- A global first, the new Quality Standard comes into play in 2022 for 350+ co-working locations nationwide
- Entitled ‘QHubs’, new accreditation is designed to raise overall quality, environmental and innovation performance of remote working locations nationwide
23 November, 2021
Tuesday, 30 November is the deadline for enterprise centres, co-working locations and flexible working spaces across Cork city and county to sign up for a preparatory programme that will support them with their sign-up to the new national Quality Standard accreditation in 2022.
The first of its kind in the world, the new Quality Standard will provide an accredited standard for the 350+ enterprise hub, co-working and remote working locations nationwide that play a pivotal role in supporting start-ups, SMEs, multinationals and remote workers across the public and private sectors.
All remote working hubs are encouraged to register for this important preparatory programme, delivered via Skillnet Ireland and the Small Firms Association, which will build on the existing knowledge and skillset of managers and staff to secure the QHubs status in 2022. The programme will be delivered through the ‘Lens of the Quality Framework’, reflecting key elements of the new Quality Standard, including:
- Hub ‘Classification’ Status
- Each hub will be classified based on their strategic purpose, size, capacity and occupancy as well as services and facilities available.
This ranges from Level 1, which is a local community hub that provides good quality and affordable workspaces, shared services and networking opportunities, to Level 4, which offers more regional, national and international collaborations, shared learning and peer to peer opportunities, and market access for client companies that want to scale globally.
- A dedicated mentor will work with each hub to identify their desired ambitions and goals i.e., how to add value to their facility for client companies via improved services, products, experiences and upgrading business model and processes used.
This offers an opportunity for locations to move up through the ranking system from Level 1 to 4, if that is their desired ambition. Each hub will work towards their targets and ambitions, and will have access to the support required to achieve this.
- Training and Development Opportunities
- Each hub will have access to a range of services and supports including networking, mentoring, training and learning programmes, independent advice and guidance, thought leadership and insights, best in class research, funding information and a host of Continuous Professional Development opportunities.
- As members range from dedicated community enterprise centres in rural towns and villages throughout Ireland to larger hybrid working spaces in urban locations nationwide, this offers further opportunities to share and collaborate on the latest news, policy developments, emerging trends and global best practice.
- International Collaborations
- Locations registered for the Quality Standard will also benefit from a range of international alliances and connections with leading European and international organisations and programmes. This will offer access to a host of best-in-class global practices via strategically aligned organisations.
- Annual Progress Update
- All hubs will be measured and their progress benchmarked annually. To facilitate this, a range of KPI’s will be set in a variety of important areas such as:
- Quality, Environmental and Innovation performance
- Community & Network
- Customer Experience
- Job Creation
This benchmark system will give client companies looking to work or partner with a local hub or enterprise centre an indication of how good a fit that particular hub is for their business and whether it meets their individual needs and requirements.
Community Enterprise Association Ireland (CEAI) National Hub Network Manager, Siobhán Finn said: “We strongly encourage all hubs, enterprise centres and co-working locations around the country to register for this preparatory programme by Tuesday November 30th. This educational programme is key for all Hub managers to ensure they are ready and able to achieve the QHubs accreditation in 2022. It’s also an opportunity for Hubs to understand the benefits the QHubs standard could bring to their centre.
Both Skillnet Ireland and the Small Firms Association were critical in the development of the preparatory programme and we at the Community Enterprise Association Ireland are very thankful for all their hard work. We’re looking forward to working with and supporting all participants of the programme on the QHubs Accreditation and how it will help them become even more ambitious, creative and collaborative in the future.”
- How to Register: Any centre or hub interested in participating, should email CEAI National Hub Network Manager, Siobhán Finn on firstname.lastname@example.org
- Deadline: Closing date is Tuesday 30th November
- For more information: Visit https://communityenterprise.ie/
About the Community Enterprise Association Ireland:
Established over 20 years ago, the Community Enterprise Association Ireland, previously known as the National Association for Community Enterprise Centres (NACEC), is the country’s leading membership network of enterprise hubs, co-working locations and flexible working spaces. Government funded and supported by Enterprise Ireland, the organisation works to drive real innovation and entrepreneurship across local communities and regions.
The Community Enterprise Association Ireland achieves this by continually working to raise the overall quality, environmental and innovative performance of the sector, ensuring the national hub network continues to support the realisation of a sustainable and balanced regional development model for Ireland. As an established and respected voice of the sector, the organisation also confidently represents local enterprise centres / hubs at government level so that all new strategies, policies and funding programmes take the needs and ambition of each community into account.
The CEAI’s 2022-2025 strategy will be unveiled early next year and this is rooted in an extensive, independently-led consultative process which engaged with member and non-member centres and hubs; local, regional and national government; state agencies and the private sector. The strategy is aligned with Enterprise2025 as well as the government’s strategic priorities, policies and plans.