A South Wales hair and beauty business that is bringing through a new generation of well-trained and qualified professionals has been named VQ Employer of the Year at the Vocational Qualifications (VQ) Awards 2019.
Scarlet Knight received the prestigious award at a ceremony held at the National Museum in Cardiff on May 15. Now in their 12th year, the coveted VQ Awards celebrate those who use technical, practical and vocational qualifications to achieve success.
The award is a symbol of dedication towards a chosen profession. The awards help to celebrate those Welsh learners, trainers and employers who are already going that extra mile when it comes to developing vocational skills and qualifications.
Scarlet Knight puts each of its employees through apprenticeships and has gained an excellent reputation for providing high quality treatments supported by outstanding customer service for its clientele from Rhondda Cynon Taff and beyond.
Created by Charlotte and John Knight – themselves former apprentices – the company has 15 employees and places work-based training at the core of its business, providing six Level 2 and 3 NVQs covering the breadth of the industry.
“Since 2012, we have helped numerous individuals gain a career within the hair and beauty industry. Some of which have stayed with us in full time employment and others have had the confidence to go and start up their own business,” said Charlotte, who started her own vocational journey in 2007 by taking NVQ Level 3 Apprenticeships in Hairdressing and Management.
“The candidates who have stayed with us have progressed to become team leaders and managers and still thrive today under our guidance and mentoring.”
The company’s staff-focused approach has sculpted a team of passionate, dedicated and respectful employees who are encouraged to continue their training in order to progress their own career paths.
Ambitious plans for the future include developing a team member to become an on-site assessor to accelerate on-the-job progression, and a goal to opening their own dedicated training academy to support a larger number of apprentices.
Said Charlotte: “I think it is amazing for our business to win the VQ Award because it gives us the recognition I think we deserve in our sector for the hard work we have put in with our trainees over the years. For us as a small business, it feels particularly special to be acknowledged in this way.
“Our plans for the future are to keep going, to keep taking on apprentices, and just keep making a really skilled world class workforce for the hair dressing and beauty industry.”
Lisa Lee, internal quality auditor at ISA Training, has worked with Charlotte and John since they were apprentices and has supported Scarlet Knight on its journey since.
“I always knew that they had the right attitude and potential to have a successful business and most importantly to invest their time and money to train the next generation,” said Lisa.
Runners up in the VQ Employer of the Year category were Deloitte LLP, Cardiff and St Cyres School, Penarth.
There are four award categories – VQ Intermediate Learner of the Year, VQ Higher Learner of the Year, VQ Trainer of the Year and VQ Employer of the Year – which encompass the spectrum of learning, training and employment.
The award ceremony coincided with VQ Day – which celebrates vocational achievement and the benefits of technical, practical and vocational learning to both the individual and the Welsh economy.
Minister for Education Kirsty Williams said:
”Work-based skills are more important than ever, equipping learners with the skills and experience they and their employers need within the modern workforce.
“The awards set the gold standard for Vocational Qualifications in Wales and reward our outstanding learners, businesses that are committed to developing their staff and trainers who work with passion and always go the extra mile.
“Each of the finalists and winners should be extremely proud and I would like to congratulate them all on their achievements.”
The VQ Awards are jointly organised by the Welsh Government, the National Training Federation for Wales (NTfW), ColegauCymru/CollegesWales, Qualifications Wales and the Education Workforce Council. The Welsh Government’s funding has support from the European Social Fund.
Picture caption: VQ Employer of the Year Award winner, Charlotte Knight of Scarlet Knight