Education and Training

Training courses specifically for the UK bed industry

The NBF has developed two online training courses specifically for the UK bed industry – An Introduction to Beds course and the Sleep Sales Course.

The Introduction to Beds Course is the perfect, fast-track induction for anyone new to beds (whatever their role in the business) to quickly get up to speed with the key areas of our industry sector.

Introduction to Beds Course

The Sleep Sales Course is aimed more at those selling beds. It is a more thorough and detailed course and focuses on giving the user ‘sleep knowledge’ and how to use it effectively to build trust with customers.

Sleep Sales Course

There are two types of official qualifications specifically for the bed industry currently available. The awarding organisation for both is OAL (Occupational Awards Ltd) – which also covers training programmes for the wider furniture industry (such as upholstery and wood machining skills).

1. Apprenticeships

These are primarily for young people, aged 16-25, entering the job market for the first time. The new Bed Makers Apprenticeship Standard (available from 1st September 2016) is a level 2 standard, designed as a two year programme for brand new entrants into the industry also needing some more general skills training (such as in English and Maths). Grants are available to offset training costs for SMEs.

(Level 2 is the equivalent of five GSCEs)

For full details on what the new Apprenticeship Standards cover, click here

For more information about how to get involved with offering Apprenticeship Standards in your business and who the training providers are, please contact Lisa Williamson at OAL,

2. NVQs

These are for people of any age to ensure they meet the skills you need – but who don’t necessarily require training in more general subject. A new Level 2 NVQ for bed makers was introduced in September 2016.

(Level 2 is the equivalent of 5 GSCEs)

More details can be seen by downloading the information leaflet.

These NVQs are offered by a number of training providers around the country. See a full list of providers

The Apprenticeship Levy

From March 2017, all employers with a payroll of more than £3m must contribute 0.5% of that payroll – but there is a £15,000 contribution from government towards your apprenticeship training to offset against that.

Download this information sheet for more details if you think you might qualify for paying the levy.

Employer Qualifications Guide Apprenticeship Policy