Grass is greener at TAFE
10 September 2009
If you drove past Kangan Batman TAFE's Broadmeadows campus last weekend, you could be forgiven for thinking the Institute had some sort of gardening problem which required the services of a fleet of Jim's Mowing trucks and trailers.
Fortunately, rather than tackling errant plants and shrubs, the 18 franchisees spent the day at the Institute going through their paces as part of the Jim's Mowing Certificate II in Horticulture.
For the past six months, the 18 participants have been working through the course, honing their horticulture skills and learning new techniques to apply on the job.
Kangan Batman TAFE trainer Andrew Priest said the course had been tailored specifically for the Jim's Mowing franchises and highlights how adaptive the vocational education and training sector has become.
"Creating these custom courses for businesses and delivering them in a way which fits in with a hectic work schedule is increasingly important in today's marketplace," he said.
"Participants in these courses have the opportunity to learn skills which are entirely relevant to their work and then put those skills immediately to use.
"Some of the participants have become franchisees after career changes, and didn't necessarily have all the skills which go with the job.
"This course provides them with the chance to broaden their knowledge. We've received some great feedback from the course so far, so there's plenty of scope to further develop the Jim's Mowing training package and deliver it nationally."
The 18 Jim's Mowing franchisees hail from all corners of greater Melbourne - from Doncaster and Hampton to Cheltenham and Atwood.
Jim's Mowing regional franchisor Garry Hardingham said that with each franchise currently turning over around $80,000 a year, the course represented a great investment both for the Jim's Mowing brand and the individual business owners.
"We see great value in providing these sorts of opportunities for our franchisees," he said.
"The qualification increases their confidence, skills and abilities, and gives the brand a real edge over our competitors. If the guys who complete this course ever decide to leave the business, they can take that qualification with them into a new role.
"With 1776 Jim's Mowing franchises in Australia, New Zealand, Canada and most recently, in London, the brand continues to gain recognition in an ever-growing industry, and it's important we manage that growth with quality training and better opportunities for our franchisees."
Kangan Batman TAFE's Jim's Mowing Certificate II in Horticulture (Landscaping) will be held again next year.