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Posted 24th December 2021

Best Workplace Training Provider 2021 – UK

Located in Hull, Portull Training Services Ltd. was founded in January 2007 to meet the demanding needs of the ports industry with regards to plant and machinery training.

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Best Workplace Training Provider 2021 – UK
Heavy duty construction equiptment outside a training facility

Located in Hull, Portull Training Services Ltd. was founded in January 2007 to meet the demanding needs of the ports industry with regards to plant and machinery training. Since formed, Portull has become a well-established, high-quality training organisation with demonstrably successful models of delivery that provide a pathway for all its learners. PTS maintain and continue to build strong links with regional colleges, educational awarding bodies and customers and develop significantly broader ranges of training solutions to meet other industries.

With a company philosophy based on the belief that the needs of its customers are of the utmost importance, Portull’s entire team is committed to developing economic growth through structured community support, development and partnership working. The training provider is now looking to move forward, be more strategic and consolidate its key position to be the “Trainer of Choice” for specialist plant and equipment across a broad range of market sectors; developing “Portull Group” to incorporate its sister company HPLA and offer onward employment.

The Portull Group not only develop and train staff for our customers, 90% of Portull Staff are a result of attending and successfully completing their funded courses. Once employed Portull and HPLA develop and mentor each employee in their chosen field, for example, Tutors, Instructors, Assessors, Administration and Front of House.

Portull encourages staff members to progress to senior roles and management levels.

During 2020, Portull trained 4 employees to a category level four (Train the Trainer) with the Road Transport Industry Training Board (RTITB), with one staff member going on to be one of only 40 in the country to deliver the Train the Trainer courses with the Independent Training Standards Scheme and Register (ITSSAR) to provide the next generation of practical training specialists, recently developing staff to become duel accredited.

Portull performs a pivotal role in responding to the dynamic skills and employment needs in its local area. Portull has forged strong extensive links within the Humber and York, North Yorkshire and East Riding regions and obtained strong alliances with a network of voluntary and community organisations. This ensures they maintain a responsive attitude to emerging opportunities and agile to referral agents. Their clients’ needs carefully calibrating the position it occupies and maintaining a flexible Pathway to the Employment programmes it offers; providing a clear line of sight for unemployed people to gain paid employment.

The company works with over 500 small, medium and large employers to ensure occupational currency is retained, specific skills needed to respond to the emerging roles and vacancies that employers have. It retrains current staff, trains and recruits new staff in direct response to employer need.

Responding to emerging employer needs, especially around the Humber Ports sector where job opportunities are plenty and somewhat varied, has seen Portull engage in a capital investment programme. This engagement has required Portull to develop state-of-the-art facilities and purchase equipment of industry standard to enable the business to teach real and occupationally relevant skills to learners.

To supplement Portull’s support, assistive technology, specialist support and other reasonable adjustments in accordance with the Equality Act 2010 Partnerships are formed from a wider range of external agencies.

The primary mechanism for referral of Portull’s offer is through its key referral agents such as job centres, community and voluntary groups and local authority funded organisations. Portull’s staff actively work with the community to offer immediate skills-based opportunities to job seekers, either through its successful programmes or other ranges of qualifications.

Portull’s commitment to stakeholder engagement provides the business with the insight to adapt and flex to dynamic labour market needs with a service offer that has both relevance and currency with employer skills requirements, roles and vacancies. As a result of the strength of their relationships, Portull performs a demonstrably successful role in assisting business and economic growth, helping to tackle unemployment and addressing wider social issues.

An example of engagement includes continual investment into its equipment and training centre, allowing it to offer more courses in an authentic workplace environment. Renovation of the original equipment and cranes that were part of the building saw them incorporated back into the building’s history, preserving the heritage of the site. The company also paid for a mural to be painted on the buildings to further celebrate the site and shipping and fishing heritage of the local area.

In engaging and supporting learners, Portull has adopted a comprehensive approach to identifying skills needs to maximise positive outcomes. Learners are given information, advice and guidance to gain extra knowledge and confidence around course content, duration and expectations. Profiling is also provided to allow staff to gain an accurate picture of each learner’s skills needs.

The analysis forms the basis to map out a specific set of actions, targets and skills development. Determining the qualifications learners will pursue to maximise their chance of achieving a positive outcome is of paramount importance. This personalised approach is particularly pertinent to learners from disadvantaged backgrounds as all factors affecting successful outcomes, including welfare and financial issues are identified and supported.

Portull’s well-established approach to quality, driven by self-assessment and quality improvement plans, are monitored monthly alongside other quality assurance metrics. The results of internal and external audits give Portull the consistency, quality and adequacy of their learner’s progress.

Not just simply focused on training the people that pass through its doors, Portull is focused on engaging with the community and maintaining the history of the same, whilst providing end-to-end service that supports people in gaining sustainable employment, they continue to support businesses.

Portull continues to work with ex-Armed Forces personnel, signing to commit to honour the Armed Forces Covenant and making Hull4Hereos their Charity of the Year 2021. Portull also sponsors local projects such as Hull Kingston Radio, Amateur Rugby League Teams, Football Clubs, East Hull Open Age Rugby Club.

Portull have also provided part of its premises to Places for People to assist learners in accessing housing, working with local food banks and the Salvation Army.

The National Careers Service/Education Development Trust are also based on site to offer further support to learners. Mental health and welfare support is another priority, with Portull referring to partners such as Andy’s Man Club, creator of the It’s OK to Talk campaign to help reduce suicides in men.

During the last year, Portull Training Services have noticed an increase in its learners requiring support in obtaining sustainable employment, safe and secure accommodation, and foodbank information. As a company, it feels that it is important to assist all learners to obtain these services and have assisted many individuals by providing clothing, food and network support. Portull have also further closed the gap with its sister company, HPLA to supply temporary to permanent sustainable employment for the individuals currently struggling, placing over 69% of unemployed individuals back into work, sustaining 95% in employment and receiving positive five-star Google feedback.

Portull continue to work with employers following the increase in redundancies during the unforeseen COVID pandemic. Extending the hand of held, offering employer and employee support during unprecedented times, has at times, produced its own challenges which Portull have executed well. Assisting newly unemployed personnel by supplying new skills and upskilling, ensures the individual is presenting themselves moving forward in their best light. These new and improved skills ensure a higher percentage employability rate within an already struggling market

Although the pandemic of 2020 took hold in March and April, this led to a further upturn of resource demands and as many customers lost personnel to furlough, quarantine and sickness, the demand continued to grow. Whilst many industries shut down for lockdown, Portull and HPLA experienced an uptake in demand, embracing working relationships to be able to support businesses and learner’s, they continued to offer all the flagship products and services.

Whilst Portull’s funded provisions were placed on hold initially, the pandemic had created many occupational safety and health risks across various business sectors, with the training provider’s customers being drastically affected. Portull responded to the pandemic quickly and adapted delivery models, schemes of work and changed their staffing structure to ensure that their customers’ and clients’ needs were continuing to be met. These measures allowed Portull to continue with the funded provisions to support vulnerable adults and assist with local labour market requests.

As the pandemic continues, the related risks and recovery are a high priority factor with Portull and its customers. Portull have therefore, stepped in to help other business owners, it has recruited, trained at cost for its customers and provided mental health, financial and welfare support for learners.

Portull employees also took the opportunity to learn new skills, develop new efficient ways of thinking and let go of inefficient ways of working. Portull staff have persevered and stretched themselves with learning specific behaviours whilst maintaining their effectiveness and efficiency in the workplace. Portull are continuing to support their learners through remote and distance learning, creating WhatsApp groups, arranging group and one-to-one Teams meetings. By offering a 24-hour learner support network as well as face-to-face delivery Portull have provided an “around the clock” function, much needed by their learners.

As a result of their dedication not only to their learners but their community over the last 12 months, Portull achieved contractual growths, retaining contracts with HPLA and gaining a further six contracts to provide labour alongside eight contracts via Portull contacts. These had carried over as a result of strengthening and closing the gap between both sides of the company.

An increase of stakeholders now means further partnerships have been formed with both companies now having working partnerships with; Operator Training Solutions Limited (OTS), HSS Hire & Training for additional training requirements, Howdens Joinery and Fairshare Foods. In addition Copernus, Greencore, and Yorkshire Greens to provide manufacturing, warehouse, and factory labour to fulfil staffing gaps, giving more opportunities for employment. Although Portull have seen a dramatic increase, it has continued to maintain its relationships with companies such as Alexander Dennis, Selkirk’s, Al-Ko Kober, Karro & Chaucer Foods, Collett & Sons Haulage and Siemens Gamesa, world leader in the renewable energy network.

Portull plan to be the Training provider of choice, training those in and out of work and have recently submitted a tender to financially support the opportunity for growth.

In conclusion, Portull maintains the road to success is their personal approach, the family vibes, commitment, and the never-ending support they offer their learners, staff and community. The moto Portull adhere to, reflecting on their selfless dedication is “If Portull are unable to do it for you, we will not hesitate to find you the source that can”.


For business enquiries, contact Cherie Jackson at Portull Training Services Ltd via www.portull.com.

Categories: Leadership, News

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