Your chance to have a say on UK Standards for Information Security Skills

e-Skills has issued an invitation to input into the public consultation for the development of the UK’s NOS (National Occupational Standards for Information Security (aligned to the IISP Information Security Skills Framework) and to participate in a NOS consultation workshop on Jan 31.

The draft standards can be found here

This consultation should also be seen as an opportunity to input your views on the information security skills needs that you need (or will need in future) as an employer or as an individual, whether or not you can see how these fit within the draft NOS frameworks or those of IISP.

e-Skills is working to ensure that its wider portfolio of security related programmes is driven by employer needs, just government policy and the business models of self-funding accreditation and funding agencies. Inputs which do not fit this consultation may well therefore prove invaluable as inputs to its other exercises.

Meanwhile they are seeking inputs from as wide a range of potential users of the new standards as practical. There will be a workshop for those with recognised industry experience in central London on the afternoon of Thursday 31st January but they are also welcoming comments by e-mail. The agenda for the workshop will cover:

·         e-skills UK‘s Cyber Security activities

·         Summary results from an employer survey of Information Security skills needs related to NOS

·         NOS overview and e-skills UK role

·         Break-out sessions  

·         Overview of draft IS NOS and linkage to IISP

·         A detailed look at the NOS content

·         Future Actions & Next steps

Those wishing to attend or having questions should contact [email protected] 

Those not wishing to attend but wishing to input should do so in advance or during the week afterwards.

As part of the approvals process for NOS they need to provide evidence of consultation. A list of those providing feedback will be maintained and made available to the approval panel. This list will not be made public but in order to ensure that the new NOS are widely accepted they wish to be able to use attributable quotes from inputs,  including on their website, when promoting the NOS.

Those of you who have never heard of the National Occupational Standards and have no idea how they are used should read on. The description will also help you to understand the gulf between the courses run by the FE and HE sectors and those run by commercial training providers. Robust inputs from employers on their needs are essential to filling the gap to the benefit of UK plc.  

About the National Occupational Standards (NOS) generally

NOS provide UK-wide, demand-led, evidence-based benchmarks of competent performance which underpin vocational learning and development, apprenticeships and qualifications across all sectors, occupations and parts of the UK. They encompass the employability skills of self-management and organisation of work, thinking through and solving problems, working with others, communicating effectively and understanding the business.

NOS are used by Awarding Organisations/Bodies (AO/Bs), Further Education (FE) and Higher Education (HE) institutions, professional bodies and private training organisations as benchmarks from which to develop programmes of learning and qualifications. They are also used by organisations to support human resource management and organisational development processes. In some sectors, demonstration of competence against NOS is required in order to run a business or practice a craft or profession.

Over the past 25 years, National Occupational Standards (NOS) have been the mechanism for ensuring that vocational education, training and qualifications equip the workforce with the skills the economy requires. A third of the workforce now holds a qualification based on NOS, nearly two million people have completed or are currently on apprenticeships and many millions more are following learning and development programmes designed to meet the requirements of NOS.

Sector Skills Councils (SSCs) and other standards setting organisations work continuously with employers and other key partners to develop and refine NOS in order to express and present current and projected industry requirements in ways which are immediately accessible to workers in their sectors/occupations. There are NOS covering virtually all functions carried out in the workplace today – a truly unique resource with the potential to focus the efforts of employers, workers and educationalists to develop the skills required to increase the UK’s productivity and competitiveness and ensure the individuals’ employability.

More information can be found here 

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