Quarterdeck's move to online training pays off amid pandemic

Leadership training firm Quarterdeck has moved online following the Covid outbreak with 1,000 participants completing over 34,000 minutes of its CPD accredited digital courses over the last eight months, generating an additional £50,000 in revenue.

(L to R): The Quarterdeck team comprising director and head of training Alan Aucoin; operations director Kris Northfield; and managing director Laura Bouttell
(L to R): The Quarterdeck team comprising director and head of training Alan Aucoin; operations director Kris Northfield; and managing director Laura Bouttell

The Harrogate-based firm, which delivers leadership and people management programmes, said that when the pandemic struck, it realised that it swiftly needed to move from in-person to online training. The group said it rapidly developed a user-friendly library of its own bespoke Learning Management System software to deliver the training.

Since last autumn, the Quarterdeck team has written, recorded and edited almost 40 video courses and over 120 lessons. It is currently adding around two new courses every month as well as responding to customer requests for bespoke content. The firm said its ability to track and organise learning for clients has also proved to be a key benefit.

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Laura Bouttell, managing director of Quarterdeck, said: “Like many businesses that previously relied on face-to-face contact with clients, we had to re-think our offering following the first lockdown.

"We quickly developed a new product, Quarterdeck Online, which has surpassed our expectations. By the third quarter of 2020, it was performing strongly as, having recovered from the initial shock of the pandemic, increasing numbers of businesses recognised the need for strong leadership skills while trying to give direction to teams working remotely.

“Covid has, of course, had a profound impact on the way we live and work. With many businesses seeing the cost savings and employee lifestyle benefits of continued home or hybrid working, the need to communicate a shared vision and strong cultural messaging has also risen up the agenda.

"Our Inspirational Leadership Programme (ILP) has been designed to do exactly that – it provides practical ways of solving problems, focusing on developing participants’ practical skills and helping them to change behavioural patterns.”

Quarterdeck said its ILP training has been developed to improve productivity in both sales and operations, increasing the loyalty of the team, and ensuring that everyone is working together to achieve success.

The customised coaching includes a 360 degree assessment to help participants identify areas in which they are strong and those where they need further development.

Every, a Leeds-based compliance and HR management solutions provider to the education sector, is one of the businesses that turned to Quarterdeck Online. Its team has watched over 350 videos as well as benefitting from a free live coaching session for 10 employees as part of a three-month programme.

Every's talent partner, Sarah Wood, said: “Quarterdeck Online has been such a fantastic solution, especially during these very strange times with face-to-face development and training sessions temporarily halted.

"We have been able to quickly adapt and utilise Quarterdeck’s professional coaching and embed video learning throughout our teams with ease. This service is definitely not your typical ‘e-learning’ tick box solution, this is much more.

"It is accessible, quality bespoke coaching that delivers real impact. The personal service that sits alongside the video content is also superb. I would highly recommend it.”

Ms Bouttell added: “Fortunately, our experienced trainers have been able to develop online programmes which have proved as effective as our face-to-face sessions in getting real results for participants.

"We are already seeing companies putting forward multiple members of their teams and recommending us to other companies as they see that our online options really work, saving both time and money.

“We believe good leadership has a trickle down effect – you take care of your people and your people take care of your business. We’re so confident in our products that we offer a full money back guarantee, but, despite thousands of users, we’ve never been asked for a refund based on the quality of our training.”