FREE Training Is A Cost Your Organisation Can Do Without

Knowing the qualifications of your instructor ensures you're getting professional instruction to enable you to be competent.
Phil Newton

Phil Newton

Managing Director
free training blog skills shop

Whether you’re an individual or an organisation looking into training, what drives you to purchase a particular course…  Is it the location, the trainer, or the cost?  We look at the true cost of FREE training…

“FREE First Aid Courses”

This was the search I put into Google and was astounded at the number of free training courses out there.  Before booking onto one of these courses you need to ask yourself why are you doing the course?

If it’s simply to use the skills at home then there is no issue, but if it’s for work then the course must meet HSE minimum requirements to be recognised as a first aid at work course.  If it doesn’t then it won’t be worth the toilet paper it’s printed on.

Questions You Need To Ask?…

Whether you’re looking for a first aid, manual handling, safeguarding course or any other for that matter you should ask the trainer certain questions.  If they can’t answer them then I would seriously consider going elsewhere.  

What Qualification Does The Trainer Have?

Back in 2013, it became mandatory that all instructors should hold a Level 3 qualification in Teaching and Education (Formerly called PTLLS).  If you decide to use an individual working from home or even some well know national charities that deliver training, you’re instructor may not hold this.  To checkout the qualifications of the instructors at Skills Shop you can click here.

Knowing the qualifications of your instructor ensures you’re getting professional instruction to enable you to be competent.  The other month I contacted a local hotel chain who told me they were happy with their existing instructor.  

When I googled her I was horrified to find out that her level of qualification was holding a First Aid at Work certificate.  Attending a first aid course does not give you the competencies and skills required to teach others.

How Often Do You Refresh Your Qualifications?

You’ll probably agree that you’re only as good as your instructor.  That’s why we refresh our instructor qualifications every 3 years.  In fact, every time I drive to deliver a course I listen to audiobooks to educate myself even further.  I look at driving as FREE university time.

What Qualification Am I Receiving?

If someone is running an “Awareness” course then the course will hold no nationally recognised qualification.  All our courses are at an accredited standard.  We can issue either an in-house or accredited certificate depending on the requirements of the delegate.

Can I Do It Online?

I always prefer face-to-face training but with the recent coronavirus pandemic Skills Shop is turning to online training which can read about here.

In terms of first aid, HSE does not recognised an online first aid course as a valid form of qualification.  They will allow blended learning.  People often confuse blended and online learning.  Blended learning is the use of different mediums, such as video with the delivery of a course.

What Guarantees To Do I Have?

Normally when you decide to do a course you’ll do the following:

  • Google a course
  • Book on it
  • Attend the course
  • Frame your certificate
  • Wait to re-qualify

During this time your knowledge, competency and skills are diminishing.  At the Skills Shop we love to be different:

  • We give you a 100% money-back guarantee on all our training so there is no financial risk.
  • We provide all the training materials so you don’t have to make lots of notes.
  • We’ll provide the additional support throughout your certification.
  • We’ll keep you up-to-date with any legislative changes or changes to techniques.

My Own Experience

In 2013 I decided to upskill my own knowledge by becoming a conflict management and restraint instructor because at the time we taught secondary school children in a private setting who were disenchanted with the school system.

I ended up booking on a training course which was twice the distance from my home and twice the cost of another instructor course.  You may wonder why I did this?

The answer’s simple.  Not only did I ring the company up and speak to the owner but I also checked out the testimonials to ensure they were real people.  The company in question was the National Federation of Personal Safety ( and the person, Mark Dawes.

Even today, if I’ve got a problem I know I can ring up Mark and he will help me out.  Skills Shop is the same, we will look after you every step of the way.

FREE Training v Paid Training… It’s Your Choice

A FREE course may sound like a good idea to begin with but depending on the levels of qualifications of your instructor, whether the qualification is nationally recognised and the support you get should an incident arise at work, the FREE course could cost you in the long run.

This is why Skills Shop do all the due diligence for you because we want to give you peace of mind from the outset.  Although we don’t offer free training the level of service you’ll receive is priceless!

Related Topics


Connect with us via our socials: 



Derry Street, Barrow-in-Furness, Cumbria. LA14 2EF