GCA?s e-learning initiative continues to GROW through 2015



The Garden?Centre Association (GCA) has recently (February, 2015) revealed that its e-learning initiative Garden Retail Online Workshops (GROW) is going from strength to strength.

After a positive 2014, two new modules have been launched for the initiative, which helps member garden centres keep their customer service at the highest standards, with plans for more in the future.

Mike Burks, who, alongside Tammy Woodhouse, is one of the GCA executive committee helping to deliver GROW, said: ?2014 was an extremely successful year for GROW. Six new organisations signed up and we launched several new e-learning modules, including Basic Planting, Basic Houseplants, GYO Tomatoes, Christmas Houseplants and Think 21/Think 25, which is a module that deals with the legal aspects surrounding the sale of age restricted products.

?In 2015 we have already launched two brand new modules, which are Basic GYO Vegetables and GYO Potatoes. We?re also working on Danish trolleys, Watering at Home, Outdoor Furniture, Barbecues and Customer Services modules too.

?GROW is available to all GCA members to ensure their teams receive quality training that is both convenient to implement and easy to manage.?

The aim of the GROW e-learning modules is to give garden centres an opportunity to train all their staff to ensure their level of basic horticultural understanding is increased and that the necessary compliance training on topics such as health and safety and food hygiene is delivered.

Iain Wylie, Chief Executive of the GCA, said: ?We are currently have in excess of 8,000 staff members from more than 90 garden centres who access GROW. It has been extremely popular and it has been great to see it expanding in the first two years since its launch and this expansion, of both content and number of users, is set to continue in the future.

?The programme is ideal for our members as it is a resource that is available to them 365 days a year and it enables targeted and specific training on topics related to the operation of a garden centre, which enables them to maintain their customer service standards at the highest level possible.

?This year looks set to be a great year for GROW as we launch new modules and hope to see more centres signing up. Members who would like to find out more should contact me via iain@gca.org.uk.?

The GCA represents nearly 200 garden centres nationwide.

Through sharing information and its inspection programme the GCA helps members to achieve high standards in customer service, plant quality and reliability.

Mike Burks


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