The first pilot programmes for R2 Register of Tree Work Operatives are now underway.
Tree work businesses and self employed tree workers are now using the on-line software where they can keep a record of their skills, training and experience. The pilot programmes are running as far afield as Dartmoor, Norwich, Oxford and Watford, with more dates in the diary for pilots starting in May.
Feedback from tree workers on the pilot has been very positive to date. They are particularly interested in the job levels being recognised as an industry standard that is quality assured so they can see where they currently stand in the industry. They also liked the facility to upload photos and evidence of work they are particularly proud of and that their R2 online record will build throughout their career. The CV writer also proved popular, with the facility to export information into a standard CV format easily.
Graham Joyce, Managing Director of Devon-based Dartmoor Tree Surgeons Ltd said: “The people who make up our company, at whatever level of skills or experience, are our greatest asset. The R2 Register recognises this and allows everyone who works here, whether full time, part time or as sub-contractors, to put a recognisable value on time served within the industry as well as accounting for all their training and assessment achievements. I believe that this can only aid us and the industry as a whole. I hope it will enable people to map out a career progression for themselves and broaden out the awareness of the arborist’s skill base away from aerial work. We are proud to be involved in this project.”
R2 has graded jobs in a progression structure. Members must achieve certain criteria at each level, and apply to be quality assured before they reach the next job grade. The authoring and definition of the graded R2 jobs is nearing completion. The management committee look forward to feedback from tree workers and their employers on the pilot.
Each job level has qualifications and training to achieve, experience in the industry and also practical tasks which users must undertake to do the job. To record these achievements, the R2 software has areas for uploading training and qualification certificates either as photos or scanned images. It also keeps a record of the time users have worked in the industry, at each level of their career.
Each job also lists the tasks a user must undertake in the work place and R2 keeps a portfolio of what they have actually achieved. This includes practical tree work tasks, for example felling and processing small trees to include using basic assisted fell techniques. On five separate occasions the user must safely fell small trees of less than 380mm diameter at felling height. On at least two occasions the user must install and direct the assisted felling of trees using a rope or winch.
In addition to technical tree work tasks there are other ‘soft’ skills that users must achieve including time keeping and team leading skills.
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