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Free e-business training for London SMEs
In a recent survey of UK businesses, 53% of companies in the retail sector said that they did not have sufficient internal skills to be able to implement internet technology*.
Seeking to bridge this skills gap and help small and medium businesses gain confidence in new technology, the Greenwich Enterprise Board is partnering with Business Link London and ecommerce provider Actinic Software, to deliver free internet skills training under the new "Business Success" programme.
With joint funding from the London Development Agency and the European Social Fund, GEB is able to offer free hands-on training to 500 SMEs from any London borough to enable them to develop their e-strategy. The programme covering modules in: An Ecommerce Overview, Building an Online Store with Actinic, E-Business and the Law, Internet Marketing, Editing Digital Images, Creating an Effective Web Site and Search Engine Marketing.
The GEB is now contracted by the LDA to train up other London training providers so that the same programme can be delivered in West and North London as well as South and East. A new module covering Actinic Audio Store, aimed at the music industry, is planned to launch shortly.
Phil Rothwell, business development director for Actinic, says, "For small businesses, the cost of acquiring the skills they need for growth is a perennial problem. By working together, the Greenwich Enterprise Board and Actinic are unlocking the sales potential of the internet for many organisations who might otherwise have to take a rain-check."
Deirdre Alsey, GEB's IT manager agrees, "Most of the small business owners who attend our 'Building an Online Store' and 'Ecommerce Overview' courses simply don't known where to start. It has been very encouraging to see how confident they become during the training process as they realise that selling online does not need to be complicated or costly."
*Source: Actinic Ecommerce Report 2003 by pfa Research
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