Diageo debuts digital on-trade educational platform

14th May, 2020 by Nicola Carruthers

Smirnoff owner Diageo has launched its Virtual Academy to provide training for on-trade workers at home during the pandemic.

The Diageo Learning for Life: Virtual Academy provides webinars and training modules

The new platform has launched as part of Diageo’s Learning for Life hospitality programme, which is run in partnership with The Springboard Charity.

Launched in the UK in 2014, the Diageo Learning for Life scheme has helped more than 140,000 individuals across the world.

Created by The Springboard Charity, the Diageo Learning for Life: Virtual Academy is open to new applicants who are looking to develop key skills in hospitality and improve their future employability, as well as more than 2,000 individuals who have previously taken part in the Learning for Life programme across the UK.

On the evening of 20 March, all UK on-trade venues were ordered to close until further notice due to the Covid-19 outbreak.

The digital platform has launched to support those who are unemployed or unable to work due to the pandemic. The academy seeks to encourage hospitality workers at home to improve their skills and earn new certificates, which will help them to be at the frontline of the recovery process once bars and restaurants are reopened.

Last Sunday (10 May), UK prime minister Boris Johnson said parts of the UK hospitality industry could reopen as early as July.

The new programme will be delivered completely online for the first time, with more than 40 digital knowledge, skills and training modules and webinars available for learners to support, motivate and alleviate isolation.

Guest speakers from the industry will also host digital sessions and each student can access one-to-one mentoring and coaching.

Lucy Lamb, programme manager at Diageo Learning for Life, said: “As the coronavirus pandemic continues to develop, we have halted our traditional classroom and work experience programme in line with government recommendations.

“With 900 individuals still actively involved in the programme across the UK, we had to move quickly to think of alternative ways to continue supporting them.

“The Diageo Learning for Life programme provides students with a foundation in hospitality, which increases employability by developing key skills including customer service, teamwork, resilience and communication.

“We hope the Diageo Learning for Life: Virtual Academy will encourage those at home to use the time to complete modules to build on their accomplishments, secure new qualifications and increase their employability ahead of the restart.”

To find out more about the Diageo Learning for Life: Virtual Academy, visit springboard.uk.net/diageo-learning-for-life-virtual-academy.

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