PIQ College

I need to practice social distancing…from my refrigerator!

Here at the Professional IQ College we used to only worry about Level 5. Now we have a whole new range of levels to be concerned about. 

Still, most of us have managed to find the funnier side. My body has absorbed so much hand-sanitiser and disinfectant, when I pee, I clean the bowl as well!

What a strange and unique time we find ourselves in.

This morning I saw a neighbour talking to her cat. It was obvious she thought her cat understood her. I came into my house, told my dog.....we laughed a lot. 

You’ve probably all been sent these jokes already but humour is a great foil for tough times. Some of you will be doing it tougher than others. For those of you with children at home, how’s that going? We have been going spectacularly well. On the first day of home schooling we suspended two students for fighting and fired the teacher for drinking on the job. On the third day, one of these little monsters called in a bomb threat! On day six, I heard one of them say, “I hope I don’t get the same teacher next year!”

By the way try, on your jeans every few days. Pyjamas will have you believe everything is fine in your kingdom.

As we approach level 2 of this pandemic (and please behave yourselves so we do not have to go back to level 3 or 4) we will be faced with many new challenges. 

I want to focus on the emotions of being allowed to return to an environment that is outside of the world we have lived for the past six weeks. Bursting your bubble will be a real challenge for some. For others, the chance to get away from their enforced bubble and join the “real world” can’t come fast enough. 

For those who are nervous, we need to be very aware of the reasons why. We need to allow this emotion to be real and not minimised or ridiculed. 

Like me, there are many in the population who have compromised health issues. (I have no spleen thanks to a very nasty racing boat accident many years ago). These people will need to be catered for in our brave, new world. 

Can they continue to work from home when everyone else is in the office? Does that compromise the office structure and flow? What does that do to your IT systems?

Other questions that need answers might be:

1)    Is your office set up for social distancing?

2)    Is there segregation in the communal areas like:

            •    Photocopier/printer room

            •    Lunchroom or breakout room – can you make changes in your breakout areas i.e. remove some tables and chairs to allow for social distancing rules?

            •    Can you stagger breaks so that fewer staff are in the breakout rooms at one time?

            •    Do you share toilet facilities with other businesses or offices? If so, how are you going to ensure everything is clean after each visit?

            •    Is there someone in the office responsible for ensuring all the above issues are being addressed? i.e. front door handles, common grab rails, reception desks etc.

            •    Do you have enough provisions of cleaning/sanitising materials on site so staff can undertake additional sanitising as required?

            •    Do your staff car-pool? Is it okay to allow this?

            •    Do you have a protocol in place to allow for non-contact pick-up and delivery with couriers?

            •    Can you set your staff up into two (or more) teams so they come into work on alternate days and teams don’t cross over until the risk of transmission is gone?

Many things will never be the same again, and that’s not necessarily a bad thing, but plenty will. It is up to each of us to manage our new environment as best we can. We, at the Professional IQ College, are here to help where we can.

I have fielded many questions recently about the Training Agreement rebate, and the possible impact on the eight-month programme of the Government announcement that they are pushing the start date of FSLAA back to at least March next year. The long and short of it is: it has no bearing at all on the timeframe allotted to complete your Level 5.
They are not linked at all. No additional time has been allowed to complete the qualification with regard to the rebate. Once you go
past the allocated time (we do have a little bit of wriggle room but not much) the rebate is forfeited. The extension relates to the delay of the legislation and the implementation of the Transitional Licensing and nothing else.

However, I am very conscious of the fact some of you have been impacted by the lockdown. If so, please contact us to see if we can give you additional time to complete your studies past the eight months. 

Some of you are waiting for  Version 2 of Level 5 to be available. We are delighted to announce, we are ready to launch Version 2 now, so please contact the college for more information. 

In a nutshell, the differences between Version 1 and 2 is that the Financial Advice piece and the six-step process have been removed from Core and placed into the relevant V2 strands. This has reduced the size and complexity of Core but increased each of the Strands accordingly. This makes for a better flow and easier qualification. The other piece that has changed is that there is a new Unit Standard in V2 covering Regulations and Legislation that is not in V1. 

At some point in the future (in keeping with the new FSLAA rules), everyone who completed V1 will need to do this bridging paper. 

Lastly, I am immensely proud and grateful to all my staff at both IBANZ and PIQ. They have worked tirelessly from home to keep both businesses running efficiently and effectively. To Robyn, Karen, Sylvia, Zeeshan, Marianne, Lisa and June, a huge thank you.

Please call us for more information.

Stay well, New Zealand. 

Cheers from me and the staff at PIQ and IBANZ. Remember, be kind to customer service people - some are doing it tough too.



June 2020

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