RACC – A Hub for Business Development in Richmond

As a prominent member of the local business community, Richmond Adult Community College (RACC) values the opportunities brought about by its long-term membership of the Richmond upon Thames Chamber of Commerce. Not only do we host many Chamber events at our Parkshot campus, we also use these events as an opportunity to get closer to the business community, gaining valuable insight into current economic issues and gaining an understanding of the workforce development needs of members.

Membership has also provided us with the opportunity to showcase our extensive facilities by hosting Chamber events from political hustings, business breakfasts, to business mentoring and masterclass sessions. These events are well supported and we are always considering ways of extending our offer to the business community.

Not only does the College act as a physical hub for the business community – we also understand the importance of providing skills-based and professional courses, workshops and seminars to support the professional development of business owners and their staff.

As the Borough of Richmond upon Thames is home to a strong core of start-ups and SMEs we have developed a new suite of enterprise courses to help businesses grow including:

• Designing and building websites for e-commerce
• Marketing and PR
• Social Media for Business
• Business Growth
• Management training
• App Development.

Participants have commented about the valuable networking and collaboration opportunities presented on these programmes as well as the skills and knowledge gained.

For the more established businesses in the Borough, we offer a variety of courses allowing businesses and their employees to develop and grow together. Whether staff are seeking further professional development through management, IT or accounting qualifications or personal development through more creative or socially based courses, the choice is endless at RACC. We can even host corporate away days – combining fun, creativity and team building.

We understand the pressures that businesses face and as such have designed our courses so there is flexibility in how and when to study – with some being offered in short, intensive bursts and others in on a weekly basis. Courses are available in the evenings and at weekends with many learners welcoming back the concept of going to “night school” to improve their career opportunities.

A new area of expansion for RACC is in the introduction of apprenticeships – which are for adults as well as school leavers. More and more adults are recognising the value of learning on the job at the same time as gaining a professionally recognised qualification. This is an area set to grow and our dedicated Business Development team will be working with local employers to build the range and scope of apprenticeships on offer.

Like the businesses we serve, we have to be responsive to our customers and therefore we try to be flexible and ensure courses are cost effective, relevant and have impact. We are also agile enough to be able to respond quickly and set up new courses and workshops throughout the year, where there is demand. With this in mind, we are continually seeking feedback from business owners and leaders and will continue to provide opportunity to respond through the Chamber and its professional communications network.

Set in the heart of Richmond (a two-minute walk from Richmond Station, and immediately adjacent to Old Deer Park public carpark) – RACC will continue to provide a hub of innovation, creativity and enterprise for Chamber members, combining physical space, enterprise opportunities, training and events.

For more information, visit our new website at www.racc.ac.uk or to discuss your business training needs contact Vanessa.Hodder@racc.ac.uk