Industry professionals looking to broaden their knowledge and strengthen their skills whilst on lockdown or working from home during the pandemic now have many free options to choose from.
Understanding the need to not only keep busy but work our brains during an increased time at home, the likes of De Beers and the Birmingham Assay Office are lifting the fees on some of their courses to make access available to all.
So what’s on offer?
Here we present a round-up of free online courses. This will remain updated during the coronavirus crisis, with social media updates being posted as and when a new course is introduced.
De Beers Group Institute of Diamonds – Diamond Foundation Course
The De Beers Group Institute of Diamonds – Diamond Foundation Course – is now available for free (usual price over £200)
Retail staff and jewellery industry professionals are invited to take this online-only course for free during the nationwide Covid-19 outbreak.
De Beers says: “During this time of social distancing and isolation, businesses must find ways to adapt and remain productive. Staying in contact with clients and engaging them may be more difficult than usual during this period, which is why we want to offer our support. You are encouraged to contact your employer or trade body representative to learn how to access this limited offer.”
De Beers Group Institute of Diamonds has written to the NAJ, Company of Master Jewellers and Houlden Group, among others, to share this opportunity with their members.
Birmingham Assay Office – Understanding Hallmarking Course
The Birmingham Assay Office is offering free access to its understanding hallmarking course.
In a bid to support the industry, and educate consumers, the Birmingham Assay Office is offering free access to its Understanding Hallmarking course. The course will enable those wishing to improve and develop their knowledge and understanding of hallmarking whilst staying in the safety of their home.
Hallmarking legislation is long-established, vitally important to the UK jewellery trade but often misunderstood by both trade and consumers. This course unravels the myths, explores the benefits and reassurance of hallmarking and explains the essential facts. It is ideal for anyone working in the jewellery or precious metal industry or buying similar items in any capacity or consumers who want to find out more about the history of hallmarking.
National Association of Jewellers – JET Essentials
The National Association of Jewellers is offering free access to its online JET Essentials programme to help professionals stay engaged with the trade while the stores are closed.
The programme, which is designed to give students a strong grounding and appetite to progress in their own jewellery journey, is a precursor to the well-respected JET Certificate and Diploma, and promises to help develop conﬁdence to better serve the needs of customers in the future.
As part of the offer, jewellers will be able to select one module from a possible 12 with knowledge and understanding tested by a short quiz, as part of the online learning experience.
The 12 modules to choose from include: Security, Jewellery, Rings, Diamonds, Gemstones, Gold, Platinum, Palladium and Silver, Hallmarking, Design, Manufacturing, Silverware and Gifts, Watches and Clocks, Selling and Customer Care.
The Goldsmiths’ Company Assay Office – Hallmarking Videos
For professionals looking for some free videos to watch to enhance their knowledge at this time, the Goldsmiths’ Company Assay Office has a selection online.
From ‘what is a hallmark’, to videos on how to submit pieces to be hallmarked and a guide on different methods of hallmarking, there’s lots to be discovered on the company’s website.
Helen Dimmick – Free Online Webinars
Consultant Helen Dimmick has started a series of free online training sessions aimed at supporting jewellery professionals through the current coronavirus-driven crisis.
Dimmick is the former interim Managing Director of the Company of Master Jewellers. She began her career as an auction house jewellery specialist, moving to Bentley and Skinner before progressing to a key management role at Tiffany & Co. She also took over the award-winning high-street brand Green + Benz before becoming a consultant in 2018.
A fully integrated programme of weekly gemstones, sales, leadership and marketing themes will be announced as part of the online training programme.
Helen hopes that these initiatives will help businesses to “survive and thrive” through uncertain times.
Jewellers Academy – Digital Retreat and Workshops
The Jewellers Academy is hosting a free online retreat for jewellers struggling with emotional and business-related effects of COVID-19.
The event is to take place solely online with live workshops running every evening from April 14-16 2020 on topics to help jewellers to feel calm, tap into their creativity and protect their wellbeing as well as their business during this time.
People from all over the industry are attending and every jeweller from complete beginner to seasoned professional is invited to join.
The event is being organised by Jessica Rose, founder of the Jewellers Academy and the award-winning London Jewellery School in Hatton Garden.
Some of the sessions covered will include: Self-care for Jewellers, Yoga for Jewellers, How to Run a Jewellery Business in Turbulent Times, Bench Tips for Makers and Creating without Purpose. Each session is run by a different expert or tutor.
If you are offering a free course to the trade during this time, please email email@example.com.