The Garden Centre Association’s (GCA) GROW (Garden Retail Online Workshops) e-Learning platform In-Store Security course has now been launched just in time for the busy Christmas sales period (November 2023).
With most retailers seeing an increase in thefts, resulting in significant money being lost each year, this course has been written to help prevent those losses.
GROW’s Instructional Designer, Antony Snow, says: “There has been a lot of publicity recently regarding the rise in retail crime and how significant sums of money are lost as a result of it, so I’m delighted that we have launched this new course on In-Store Security.
“Retail theft is a problem that affects all retailers throughout the year, but with the busy Christmas trading period just around the corner, this course will provide our members’ employees with an insight into why people steal and an understanding of the part that they can play in deterring and preventing theft from their garden centre."
GROW courses cover a range of important topics to help employees gain knowledge and confidence in products and services, so they can successfully assist others, whether colleagues or customers.
Peter Burks, GCA Chief Executive, adds: “This is a pertinent new course, especially relevant for this time of year, which has been written to provide our garden centre members’ teams, and also those at Horticultural Trades Association (HTA) garden centres, with the knowledge to help prevent thefts. Antony is also putting together an equally as important Sustainable Pest Control course and this will be live soon too.
“We are always working on developing GROW and increasing what we provide to cover all the topics our members might need. It’s available 24 hours a day, 365 days of the year, so people can log-in when convenient for them. It’s also a cost-effective way of delivering training and personal development that enhances customer experience and this is great for everyone.
“Many members have told us how effective it is in giving their staff confidence while providing essential education and training for them too.”
GROW started as an initial idea, devised during a strategy meeting of the GCA’s executive committee, to bring education and training tailored to individuals employed in the garden centre industry.
It’s a self-funding and non-profit facility with any surpluses being reinvested into its ongoing development and improvement. Currently there are more than 100 courses and 12,000 plus users throughout the UK.
These courses include a wide range of topics that cover horticulture, customer service, food safety, regulated sales and health and safety.
All the courses have been written by experts in their field and are designed to apply to a garden centre environment, with the content for the horticultural courses drawing on the vast experience of members within the GCA.
Peter adds: “If you’re not using GROW already, but would like to find out more, please contact Antony or I for further details. You can also find out about it on our website www.gca.org.uk/gca-grow-information, or by emailing email@example.com.”
The GROW e-Learning facility is available to GCA member garden centres, as well as to HTA garden centre members too. The new course is accessible immediately to existing subscribers.
For further information, please visit www.gca.org.uk.