Training London Fire Brigade

Delivering improved training at a reduced cost in partnership with London Fire Brigade

Training London Fire Brigade

Delivering improved training at a reduced cost in partnership with London Fire Brigade

Contract Summary

  • INDUSTRY SECTOR: Emergency Services
  • SERVICES DELIVERED: managed Training Service
  • CONTRACT DURATION: Commenced: 1st April 2012 Duration: 25 years
  • CONTRACT LOCATION: Four facilities across London

Key Outcomes

  • TRAINING DELIVERY: Up to 25,000 delegate days per year and circa. 300 Operational Firefighter Apprentices each year
  • REDUCED COSTS: Introduction of blended learning solution so delegates can access and self-enrol on training packages
  • RELEASED RESOURCES: Frontline staff released back into operational duties
  • HEALTH & SAFETY: Reduction in reportable H&S instances

The Challenge

In 2008 London Fire Brigade (LFB) decided to look at innovative ways of delivering its training and future-proofing existing training infrastructure.

As a result of successful community safety work, which has led to a reduction in the number of ‘real’ operational fires, they also wanted to increase firefighters’ exposure to core skills such as Carbonaceous Fire Behaviour whilst at the same time maintaining frontline services.

A training partnership was considered to be the best route forward with the following objectives:

  • Future cost avoidance and cost certainty
  • Efficient resource utilisation
  • Operational efficiency
  • Revenue generation
  • Increased training at evenings and weekends
  • Catering to individual as well as organisational needs
  • Reducing delegate travel time to attend training
  • Delivering a blended training solution using technology and modern techniques to complement traditional classroom and practical training sessions

The Solution

Manage Training

Babcock provides a fully managed service to LFB, taking on responsibility for the full training programme from training needs analysis through to design and development of courses, planning and scheduling of the training, equipment and asset management and facilities management. Improvements delivered include:

  • Comprehensive course reviews: thorough review of each programme and its required outcomes to identify more efficient methods including blended solutions. Reviews looked at course content, audience, frequency, firefighter release pattern, requirements to attend etc. to increase overall training efficiency.
  • Structured Trainer Competency Framework: reducing the number of instructor competency sets to increase flexibility. Investment in personal development programmes for each trainer to facilitate standard training practices and packages.
  • Enhanced scheduling and resourcing: a bespoke planning and scheduling system developed by Babcock ensures LFB has the right people and equipment in the right place at the right time. The Learning Management System enables the integration of training with frontline operations for efficient use of time.

Design and Delivery of Training

Babcock delivers a portfolio of over 250 training courses to circa 5,000 operational staff and 700 support staff totalling up to 25k training days per annum.

Babcock maintains and updates the portfolio of courses ensuring that they remain up-to-date, relevant and reflect best practice. Babcock works closely with LFB to ensure that changes to courses are carried out quickly and efficiently and adhere to relevant legislation.

Babcock has worked with LFB to develop an 18-month Operational Firefighter Apprenticeship programme which includes e-learning modules, online digital libraries, online assessments and post training workshops. Apprenticeship coaches provide full support to apprentices, including during their time on station, to guide them through their entire learning journey for this nationally recognised qualification.

Provide and Manage Infrastructure

Babcock provides and manages training infrastructure on behalf of LFB. This saw a £14m investment in two new Dedicated Training Facilities (DTFs) which are home to fully carbonaceous real fire training as well as centres of excellence in Urban Search and Rescue, including Confined Space Training and Incident Command.

A portfolio of venues across London is used to enable flexible training capacity and minimise travel time for firefighters.

The Outcome

Babcock is delivering a comprehensive training service covering the management of training, its design and development plus the provision and management of infrastructure that will exceed LFB’s objectives over the 25-year contract. In addition to providing a first class training service, Babcock is delivering a cost saving to LFB of circa £66m over 25 years on their training budget, inclusive of our spend on new facilities.

Further added value has been achieved for LFB through:

  • Releasing over 165 firefighters previously delivering training back to operations as part of the transition process
  • In the first year of operation Babcock delivered more training per annum than had ever been achieved by LFB
  • Investment in trainers to ensure that they are formally accredited and are multi-skilled
  • Development and delivery of a Learning Management System, providing online course materials, firefighter CPD tracker and an intelligent planning and scheduling tool
  • Improved Health and Safety statistics within training with a considerable drop in the number of RIDDOR incidents
  • Increased course accreditations and significantly enhanced methods of assessment so that the benefits of training can be more accurately measured
  • Improved flexibility in the training programme so that it is more in line with operational requirements and the critical firefighting capability within London is maintained at all times
  • Design, development, build and operation of state of the art training facilities to provide better and more realistic training for London’s firefighters
  • Provision of multi-level performance reporting and analysis

Key elements:

  • Training design, development, delivery and management
  • Apprenticeship design and delivery
  • Facilities build, management and maintenance
  • Comprehensive performance KPIs and competency tracking

For further information email: [email protected]

If you are interested in joining Babcock as a Trainer please visit or email [email protected]