2nd STRESS-LESS Newsletter

The STRESS-LESS project provides digital stress prevention solutions for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) as well as up-to-date information on how digital stress is dealt with in partner countries. Here you can find the latest project newsletter with details of all activities:

stressless_Newsletter2_EN

STRESS-LESS

Well-being and prevention of stress from working

The STRESS-LESS project aims to provide and support the uptake of innovative open pedagogies and approaches in the field of improving the digital competences as well as personal, social, and learning competences of staff of small and medium-sized companies (SMEs). The project will be focusing on equipping people with knowledge and teaching them habits how to better cope with digital stress.

Especially as a result of digital transformation and the associated changes in business models, workflows and the use of digital tools, employees are faced with constantly increasing demands in terms of flexibility, accessibility and transparency. As a consequence of this progress workers are suffering growing stress-related conditions.

The project objectives are to

  • develop new training content about prevention and management of digital stress that can be applied in work-based settings or in “home-office” settings by SMEs, their staff, managers and trainers/mentors. The training content will be available online, free of charge via web and mobile based platform;
  • empower VET teachers, trainers and mentors in work-based settings through the development of effective digital, open and innovative pedagogies;
  • provide data from research and feedback from practical implementation of measures against digital stress to scientific organizations, training organizations and policy makers, so that they can build upon the results of the project.

As a result of the STRESS-LESS project in the long run SME staff and other learners will be healthier, less stressed, easier to communicate with, suffer less from depression and burn-out. SMEs staff will take less sick leave and be more productive, efficient and competitive.

Project duration

September 2020 to August 2022

Web

www.stress-less-project.eu
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/showcase/stress-less-project

Project Partner

Erasmus Logo

This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This communication reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.

DigiVET

logo_DigiVET

Digital Media for VET in SMEs

Digital media offers a new and effective way to engage employees who have low levels of qualifications in small SMEs in learning. In many countries the formal education level of employees is still weak and migration within and to Europe has led to an inflow of additional learners who lack the levels of language to engage in learning using traditional techniques. Digital media can help to overcome this barrier to learning by using more audio, video and visual material to support learning. However, many VET trainers and SMEs lack the competences needed to use digital media.

The objective of the project is to enhance the use of visual digital media in SMEs, to support the training of employees with low levels of qualifications. This will be done through the development of modular online learning programs about the use of visual digital media. The focus will be on visual material for the field of VET learning and shaped by guiding principles and concepts which were used, implemented and evaluated in Germany by ISOB and ‘SoWiBeFo e.V.’ (e.g. ‘Coaches for Digital Learning’ and ‘Media Pedagogy for Teachers’). The conceptual model for learning and the expertise generated from the projects will be used to develop similar material for VET trainers and facilitators of learning in small SMEs.

Objectives

VET trainers and facilitators in SMEs will acquire competences for digital learning in two steps:

  1. acquiring basic skills in digital visual media use
  2. using digital media in training of staff who have low levels of qualifications

A key feature of the project is the provision of support from trained coaches within the partner organizations, who will be available to support in-company trainers and facilitators as they introduce digital learning. In-company facilitators will work with the end recipients (low qualified staff as learners), digital and visual forms of workplace learning.
Final beneficiaries – Low qualified employees and employees with a lack of educational language skillsVisual media as instructional videos make learning independent, allow for repeating the content as needed, and can be designed to promote language proficiency at the same time.

Project Duration

November 2019 to June 2022

Project Partners

Erasmus Logo

This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This communication reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.

SOCS

Introducing Strategic Organisation Counseling using Symbols for Visualization

SMEs (especially social enterprises), Start-Ups or young entrepreneurs are very often low budgeted and therefore do not have the financial means to develop and install tools and trainings to further develop their business and the competencies of their teams. It is usually impossible for them to hire an external counsellor to support them in their strategical plan.

Erasmus+ Programme has set the objective of fighting unemployment through training and education: “EU businesses need to become more competitive through talent and innovation”. The project SOCS promotes building up on this goal by improving the learning provision tailored to the specific needs of SMEs, Start-ups and entrepreneurs, short people who have HR and organizational development tasks.

“Overall, demand is growing for non-routine analytical skills and strategies involving creativity, problem-solving, communication, teamwork and entrepreneurship – all skills that help workers to maintain their employability and enterprises their resilience in the face of change.”

A Skilled Workforce for Strong, Sustainable and Balanced Growth”, A G20 Training Strategy, INTERNATIONAL LABOUR OFFICE, GENEVA, NOVEMBER 2010

By focusing on developing the strategic, leadership, teamwork and HR management competences of the SME owners, managers and their teams, SOCS project will help them build competitiveness, grow and increase employment.

The aim of the SOCS project is to improve entrepreneurial practice by improving the skills of the responsible staff, especially those in charge in small organizations by the approach of symbol work. The innovation lies in visualization as a very precious technique to create new responses instead of only dealing and being pushed by day to day business. Symbols help to express preconscious attitudes and mental barriers, even blind spots and get more clearness about future actions.

During the two years project period, partners aim to identify the areas of interventions most needed by the targets (organizational counsellors, consultants, business owners, entrepreneurs, especially young entrepreneurs, organizational and human resources managers and students, technicians for organizational development and HR decisions in organizations, start-up founders), by finding the existing tools most adequate for use, adapt them if needed or to develop new tools based on symbol work, especially for the online versions of the tools for free use.

Objectives

  • To develop leadership and HR skills of participants
  • To improve innovation management and innovation skills and adopting it as part of a day-to-day work to improve competitiveness
  • To improve managerial practice dealing with change and challenges
  • To develop self-assessment tools based on symbol work
  • To provide to the learners the possibility to choose between solutions for f2f training or online tools

Project duration

November 2019 till October 2021

Web

Homepage: www.socs-project.eu

Projekt Partners

Asociación Caminos (Spain)
Hafelekar Unternehmensberatung (Austria)
BIMEC (Bulgaria)
CSI Center for Social Innovation (Cyprus)
Instituto Politecnico do Porto (Portugal)

Erasmus Logo

This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This communication reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.

AISAB

aisab logo

Applied Innovation for Students and Business

The AISAB Project addresses the need within the EU to improve the level of innovation and its impact, particularly in SMEs. Building on the work of other innovation projects and materials, it will develop approaches to develop the skills that support SME innovation from an HEI context and through VET. These complementary streams of work will see implementation of initiatives to drive innovation, both during the project and also on a sustainable basis, by embedding the outcomes in the day-to-day activities of HEIs and organisations delivering VET to SMEs.

The project objectives are to develop learning materials aimed at enhancing student skills in assessing and implementing innovation, and build tools that students can use to facilitate their impact when consulting in SMEs. It will also develop a toolkit for SMEs to self-diagnose their innovation practice, as well as putting in place business intervention approaches that can be used to enhance innovation practices in SMEs.

Objectives

  • Develop a series of tools and techniques that leverage the work of previous projects, and established good practice, into a HE context for use with students to enhance their knowledge of innovation;
  • Create a handbook/process guide enabling HE students to work within SMEs to assess and develop innovation practice to enhance their skills in assessing and implementing innovation;
  • Design and develop a toolkit for SMEs to self-diagnose innovation practice and identify weaknesses;
  • Develop business intervention approaches to enhance innovation practices in SMEs;
  • Create case studies for use in a VET and HE context to support dissemination and exploitation of project results;
  • Write and present a research paper exploring reasons for weaknesses in the underlying culture and support infrastructure relating to innovation in SMEs.

Project duration

September 2017 till April 2020

Web

www.aisab.eu

Project partners

Universität Gloucestershire (England) – Koordination
Hafelekar Unternehmensberatung (Österreich)
PROMPT-H Bildungs GmbH (Ungarn)
Universität Sopron, Wirtschaftsfakultät (Ungarn)
Universität Primorska, Fakultät für Management (Slowenien)
Korona plus d.o.o., Ljubljana (Slowenien)
Fondazione Instituto Tecnico Superiore, Bergamo (Italien)
Universidad de Granada (Spanien)

Erasmus Logo

This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This communication reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.

2inno

Do innovation now!

Innovation is frequently marketed as a driver of growth for the whole economy as well as the key issue for enterprises seeking to enhance their competitiveness. But why is it often so difficult for a business to successfully put innovation in to practice?

The principal reason is that it´s always a risk finding the right ideas, developing them into products and services before attempting a success launch into the market. If you run a small or medium sized business, you know that you must constantly renew but you do not always have the resources, the know-how or the willingness to take this risk.

2inno.eu has been developed to address this problem. The programme has been designed for the owner/manager or management teams of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and enables even the smallest businesses to introduce and implement practical innovation processes. The 2inno methodology – outlined below – has been jointly developed by 6 project partner institutions across Europe:-

A business that participates in the 2Inno programme will be assigned their own dedicated 2Inno coach. The business will participate in two inital ‘Innovation Audit‘ workshops at which an in-depth review of its competitiveness will be completed to determine how well positioned it is to respond to marketplace challenges and to develop appropriate solutions.

Following these workhops, innovative transfer projects will be defined, implemented and monitored. Short training modules will be delivered to key management personnel throughout the process. This provides the basis for the creation of an innovation strategy that will help build a long-term competitive advantage for the business.

Results

  • Multilingual innovation web-platform:
  • Toolbox ‘2inno innovation tools’
  • Training sessions in ‘Innovation Management‘

Project duration

October 2013 till September 2015

Web

Homepage: www.2inno.eu
Facebook: www.facebook.com/2inno/
Twitter: twitter.com/2innoeu

Project Partners

Hafelekar Unternehmensberatung – Innsbruck (Austria)
Instituto de Formación y Estudios Sociales – Madrid (Spain)
PROMPT-Ltd. – Gödöllő (Hungary)
Local Enterprise Office Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown (LEO DLR) – Dublin (Ireland)
Camporlecchio Educational Srl – Bergamo (Italy)
Institute for Innovation and Technology (Korona plus d.o.o.) – Ljubljana (Slovenia)

logo eu lifeliong learning programme

This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This communication reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.

PRINOTH

analysis of customer satisfaction

From 2009 till 2012 we assisted PRINOTH, the leading manufacturer of snow groomers. A major strength of the company is the constant work on the highest possible customer orientation in terms of product development, service and support. PRINOTH emphasizes the company’s vision to set new standards through continuous innovation and places great emphasis on excellent service networks.

Our role was to support PRINOTH in the measurement of customer satisfaction and, after evaluation of the results, to propose concrete recommendations for action.

Analysis of customer satisfaction, with the following topics:

  • Based on the PRINOTH vision and corporate objectives for the coming years, an initial analysis was performed by Hafelekar.
  • Together with PRINOTH then were also discussed possible targets to incorporate them into the set of questions of the customer satisfaction analysis.
  • PRINOTH has a very international customer base. Therefore, great emphasis was placed on a detailed workflow.
  • We also supported the project through our many years organizational know-how.
  • The evaluations in the field of customer satisfaction are by nature very complex, since there are many different topics to be included and make comparable.
  • A discussion on concrete areas of action concluded the survey.

Client

PRINOTH AG

Project duration

2009 and 2012

Tray-return

Return system for trays

SISTRO precision engineering GmbH is contract manufacturer in the field of high precision components for the medical technology, sealing technology and precision engineering. In the longer term SISTRO is keen to take the role of contract production back to thereby provide more resources for developing their own products, the expansion of the company’s internal project management, process know-how and developing their own innovative capability. The present project, the development of a tray return system, is an important step to prove the role as a single-source provider of complex solutions.

In the self-catering (eg huts), many people have to be employed to clean up food trays from the tables. The staff currently being used for that task, has not got a very attractive job and is often needed only at peak times. By a tray return system those resources shall be reduced – or utilized in a more meaningful way – which would lead in any case to a cost reducing for the restaurant business. From the perspective of the guest, the system should lead to a considerable increase of the comfort factor and to find – even in a self-service restaurant – tables always cleared down.

The challenge of this project was to implement this – actually – simple idea in an efficient and cost effective manner. The key issues that needed to be solved are, on one hand, the tray detection and on the other hand the handling of the deposit return.

The innovation was primarily to adapt and integrate technologies that were originally developed for other applications to a novel, not yet existing application. The specific technical and economic challenges of the project were, in addition to the Precision Mechanics and Mechatronics, a comprehensive knowledge:

  • Product innovation: the creation of “intelligent” food trays.
  • Process Innovation: The project staff and the external partners have been closely involved in the planning of the project. In the long term we shall succeed in such way to expand the own value chain by building up in-house expertise to be able to participate more actively in development projects and to initialize them by our own.
  • Innovation Management: This project can be seen as a kind of pilot project to initiate that process actively. In this context, innovation (for SISTRO): We go “one step back” in the value chain and are willing not only to “make products” but focus more on – in large parts already existing – research and development knowledge.

The project made it possible to find an innovative, yet sustainable structure for SISTRO.

Client

Sistro precision engineering GmbH

Project duration


08.01.2011 – 29.02.2012

Partners


Electronic Design AS
Office Winter

Kathrein

Alternative surfaces for high frequency (HF) components

The implementation of a mobile filter by plastic technology and alternative coating (fulfilling the required electrical characteristics) means a technological leap for the entire mobile technology! The innovation of this project is therefore particularly important.

The intention of the project was to assess which alternative materials and material combinations can meet the requirements for electrical quality and passive intermodulation. Therefor, it was necessary to try and qualify a variety of coating materials and processes. The project aim was to develop a very special process to enable the production of a RF filter, hereby abstaining from galvanic plating.

In principle, this initiative project theoretically considered the possibility of alternative coating techniques over conventional copper and silver plating. Like in many research and development projects it is essential to exploit theoretical considerations in the run-up. Yet, in order to utilize the respective market opportunities, these theoretical insights have to be tested and qualified through practical functional models and test series. KATHREIN Austria is currently working on a successor project, which will also draw on the expertise of external partners to be able to test the project in practice.

Client

KATHREIN Austria GmbH

Project duration

01.03.2011 to 06.30.2011

NRH e-Marketing

e-marketing concept for the Neue Regensburger Hütte

The Neue Regensburger Hut (NRH) is one of the most important bases of the Stubai High Trail which is an important economic factor in the Stubai Valley in summer and a central attraction of tourists hiking in the Stubai Valley. Yet, only a few hikers and local regulars visit the huts. This makes an economical survival difficult.

The challenge was accepted by Mr. Eder: A guest that is satisfied with a “dry place to sleep and a hot soup” is long gone and is nowadays rather looking for entertainment and activities before and after the tour, seeking increased comfort and activities. In this project, Mr. Eder, together with the supporting partners, met these trends and new challenges and was able to get through a strategic and very professional approach towards a long-term safety and attractiveness of the business.

The highlight of the project is a comprehensive marketing plan:

  • Website with online booking
  • Social media integration (especially Facebook, YouTube, Google Earth, etc.
  • Event and Event Calendar
  • seminar program
  • Newsletter Marketing
  • and much more

The successful repositioning of the NRH shows that even very small companies and businesses can profit by existing funding opportunities and by active support from the outside.

Client

Thomas Eder (tenant)

Project duration

2010-2011

Partners

Advertising Agency – Ingmar Koehler