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NOS Frequently Asked Questions

1. What are National Occupational Standards?

National Occupational Standards (NOS) describe what an individual needs to do, know and understand in order to carry out a particular job role or function.

2. How can National Occupational Standards be used?

They can be used to:
  • Describe good practice in particular areas of work
  • Set out a statement of competence which bring together the skills, knowledge and understanding necessary to do the work
  • Provide managers with a tool for a wide variety of workforce management and quality control
  • Offer a framework for training and development
  • Form the basis of a range of National Vocational Qualifications (NVQs), Scottish Vocational Qualifications (SVQs) and a range of other vocational qualifications.

3. How do National Occupational Standards help employers?

  • Improve quality of goods and services
  • Increase productivity
  • Reduce costs for recruitment by facilitating the selection of new employees
  • Provide a means for better human resources planning
  • Help effective skills upgrading
  • Act as a benchmark for rewarding experience, knowledge and competence.

4. How do National Occupational Standards help employees?

  • Identify skills and knowledge needed for occupations
  • Provide a reference to assess ability and training needs
  • Identify and support career paths
  • Provide guidelines for certification/accreditation
  • Increase mobility within industries.