Coronavirus update for customers

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Coronavirus update for customers

Operational Update on NOCN Group Qualifications and Services

NOCN Group offers a wide range of services including regulated qualifications, EPA for apprenticeships, Job Cards in construction, Access to HE Diplomas, bespoke accreditation and educational and skills support training.

You will find out more operational detail on the implications of COVID19 for each of these services, including advice for students and centres preparing for external assessments, through the following links:

Please note that NOCN will be following the guidance issued by the ESFA, IfATE, Ofqual, CCEA, QAA and Qualifications Wales, and will update our customers as things change.

If you have any concerns or would like to discuss the impact on your centre, apprentices or learners please contact us on or 0300 999 1177 (Option 5).

Working to support our valued customers

You will be aware of the various Government and World Health Organisation (WHO) announcements and official advice over COVID19.
The situation is unprecedented and has been continually changing. With colleges and schools now closed and the country in effect ‘locked down’, other than essential services, we will endeavour to continue to support you, your apprentices, learners and card applicants through this difficult period.

We support Ofqual’s statement that the most important principle is fairness to all learners and apprentices, not only for those being assessed now, but also for those assessed before COVID-19.

Centre Support

All our staff are working from home, so we are still offering front line support, through telephony, email and web chat as usual.
Certificates for regulated qualifications and cards are being issued to centres in the normal way.
We aim to provide as full a range of our services as possible, where these can be delivered remotely, and we can use remote or recorded assessment methods, whilst maintaining the integrity of the assessment.
All face-to-face appointments for approval visits, External Quality Assurers, and external assessments have been suspended until training centres reopen and normal business resumes.
We are providing digital on-line support, including offering WebEx interviews, developing online invigilated exams in place of physical papers, and digital content support.

Please contact us to discuss how best we can support you on or 0300 999 1177 (Option 5).

Best wishes from all at NOCN to you our valued customers. We hope you all remain safe and well.

Graham Hasting-Evans, Group Managing Director

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Our Partners

NOCN works in collaboration with a number of key strategic partners including leading industry influencers including:

WorldSkills UK champions world-class apprenticeships and technical skills through Skills Competitions, WorldSkills UK LIVE and skills role models. In 2019, NOCN formed a strategic partnership with WorldSkills UK to work together to share global skills insights with businesses, education bodies and governments through the WorldSkills UK Productivity Lab – a programme designed to mainstream international skills excellence to help boost productivity and economic competitiveness. As educational charities, we share a common vision to create opportunities through learning and skills development.

“We are excited to be working more closely on our Productivity Lab programme with NOCN, who have been at the forefront of vocational and technical education development in the UK.”
Dr Neil Bentley-Gockmann OBE, Chief Executive, WorldSkills UK

As the organisation representing independent learning providers, AELP is a major voice in the sector. NOCN is a patron of AELP, a sponsor of several working groups and regularly cooperates on key initiatives.

"AELP has always worked closely with partners committed to high quality provision and this is why we are proud that NOCN is a patron of the organisation. NOCN is recognised for the quality of its awards and its commitment to quality and customer service. We share an agenda of continuous improvement in a period of great change. NOCN is a major supporter of the AELP events programme including our national conference and this programme is a vital means of driving improvement through the sharing of information and best practice. NOCN supports our members to ensure that training providers continue to contribute to the productivity agenda and drive with better skills for Britain’s workforce."

Stewart Segal, Chief Executive, AELP

In 2016 NIACE merged with Inclusion and relaunched as the Learning and Work Institute. NOCN remains a close and committed partner due to its common heritage and shared outlook – NOCN was established with the support of NIACE 30 years ago and both organisations are committed to increasing educational opportunities for all. As an expression of its commitment to Learning, NOCN was a major sponsor of the festival of Learning 2016.

"Our partnership with NOCN is an important one to us. We share a set of values and a strong focus on how adult education can transform lives. Working together, we are able to achieve much more for young people and adults who deserve flexible and respected qualifications to help them get on in life and at work."

David Hughes, Chief Executive, L&WI

There were 27,738 TUC learner registrations in this period for a range of NOCN qualifications, including an Award for Trade Union Representatives, a Certificate in Employment Law and a Diploma in Occupational Health and Safety. NOCN has worked with the TUC for many years and continues to support its efforts to improve levels of educational attainment for its members and representatives.

"NOCN’s approach to accreditation and development is professional, timely and resourceful, with well-developed systems and processes in place. They have supported us, given advice and ensured that our intentions have translated into qualifications that are meaningful for our learners. We have an excellent and productive working relationship with them."

Liz Rees, Head of TUC Education


NOCN is ACAS’s accrediting body for the Certificate in Internal Workplace Mediation (CIWM) course. Brian Thornton, Head of Advisory Services Policy at ACAS said: We’re delighted to have NOCN on board with us for our CIWM course, which is a highly valued service amongst our customers. Successful mediation in the workplace is crucial and so it is really important that the accredited recognition for our course will continue to come from a leading Awarding Organisation.


We have worked with Institute of Productivity to develop a suite of Level 4 management qualifications which aim at improving productivity in businesses. This was launched in 2015 and due to its success we are now developing a complete online solution for the Certificate course which will allow trainee managers to both seamlessly learn online and also sit the examinations in the same system. The online course and examinations will be launched in 2016. Working in partnership with NOCN has been a rewarding experience. They keep us ‘on our toes’ by (rightly) challenging us to justify any statements we make, but whenever we struggle or stumble they provide the encouragement, and professional support we need. John Heap, Managing Director, Institute of Productivity


OCN Northern Ireland

NOCN works with regional delivery partner OCN Northern Ireland to provide a service to all learners in Northern Ireland.

"OCN NI is one of the leading awarding organisations in Northern Ireland. Through our collaboration with NOCN we can offer training providers in NI access to over 500 regulated qualifications across a wide range of subject areas. Since I became CEO, our partnership with NOCN has never been stronger. Graham and his team are a pleasure to work with and by sharing ideas and resources we have avoided duplication, allowing both organisations to focus on developing highly valued qualifications. The two organisations also share a similar vision and set of core values which has enabled us to form a strong alliance."

Martin Flynn, Chief Executive Officer, OCN NI