Halfords is delighted to announce that it has been awarded a Princess Royal Training Award - in conjunction with City & Guilds - for its GEARS training programme.

This hugely prestigious award recognises UK employers that successfully link their skills development needs to improved business performance and who invest in the training of their staff.

Measured against key hallmarks, recipients must evidence how the training is integral to the organisation, its efficiency and effectiveness, and how the organisation’s success has been impacted by the training.

Learning is fundamental to Halfords’ colleague attraction and retention strategy, with the GEARS and Aspire programmes demonstrating how learning sits at the heart of the colleague journey. For Retail starters, GEARS provides the core customer and technical skills required for successful performance.

Open to all, GEARS training is delivered through a combination of e-learning, technical and face-to-face workshops. The first two stages of GEARS even allow colleagues to achieve a Retail Level 2 Apprenticeship standard, with progression encouraged into a specialism or leadership role (Aspire programme) thereafter.

This year has seen a variety of different organisations awarded the accolade – from large and multi-national companies, to charities, public sector and small businesses – with only a handful from the retail sector, including Halfords.

Clare Moore, Group People Director, was presented the award by HRH Princess Anne at St. James’s Palace in October: “Friendly expertise is at the core of what we offer to our customers, whether that’s through selling the right product or providing a great service. The Gears programme delivers that for us, so to have that programme recognised through such a credible award validates all of the hard work that went into the design and continues to go into its delivery and review.

“Meeting colleagues from some of the other businesses who had achieved the award brought home to us how prestigious the Princess Royal Award is, and it’s great to be able to talk about it to current colleagues and those who are thinking about a career with us!”

For a full list of the recipients for 2018 ceremony, please visit www.princessroyaltrainingawards.com/2018-recipients/.