Improve International Retains Investors in People Bronze Standard

Improve Internation IiP 2016 Improve International, one of the UK’s leading providers of veterinary CPD, has retained the Investors in People (IiP) Bronze Standard it first achieved in 2010.  The company was one of the first in the veterinary sector to embrace IiP and has retained the Bronze Standard for a second time after a reassessment in January 2016, involving a series of in-depth interviews with the company’s management team and employees.

Improve International is one of the UK’s leading veterinary training companies with an 18 year track record in providing structured continuing professional development (CPD) to veterinary professionals.   Its postgraduate certificate programmes are accredited by the European School of Postgraduate Veterinary Studies (ESVPS) and validated by Harper Adams University.  Several of its Postgraduate Certificate programmes (PgC’s), including its flagship Small Animal Medicine and Small Animal Surgery programmes , confer eligibility for applications for the RCVS’ Advanced Practitioner status.


IiP aims to transform business performance through people, providing a framework for key business areas with participating companies given support and tools to enhance their performance.  They are then benchmarked against set criteria to achieve the Standard or the higher levels of Bronze, Silver and Gold.  In achieving the Bronze Standard, Improve International is judged to be an ‘advanced’ Investor in People.  This award is achieved by just over 5% of Investors in People-recognised organisations in the UK, all of which have demonstrated additional evidence above the Investors in People core Standard.

Jeff Pullen, the IiP specialist who carried out Improve International’s reassessment, commented:  “Improve International has successfully retained its Investors in People Bronze award – a magnificent achievement considering the significant changes that have taken place within the company over the past year.  What this clearly demonstrates is that organisations that invest in their people – developing them and communicating with them  - are agile, flexible and able not only to survive change but to positively thrive on it.”

Alison Babington MRCVS, Business Coordinator at Improve International, said:  “We were assessed against the IiP framework which required us to provide evidence that we meet 39 core evidence requirements, plus a minimum of 26 additional evidence requirements to maintain the bronze level.

“To prepare for the reassessment we reviewed our business strategy and its communication to all members of the team.  We had to identify and provide evidence for the support we provide for learning and development;  how employees are encouraged to take on responsibility; how knowledge is shared and how people’s contributions to the organisation are recognised and valued.  As we are now a larger organisation than at our last assessment there were more factors to consider but the process helped highlight the progress we have made and the breadth of skills we now have in the company.

“We were delighted to retain our Bronze award.  It is rewarding to be externally assessed and to be reassured that our investment in staff is impacting positively on the company.”

Acquired by Benchmark Holdings Plc in February 2015 and based in Swindon, Improve provides high quality CPD in a range of formats for veterinary surgeons, veterinary nurses, receptionists and practice managers to help them to develop their skills and knowledge, using a combination of review lectures, case-based discussion and where, applicable, hands-on practical sessions.

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