The Irish Co-Operative Society (ICOS) Skillnet application for funding for 2014-2015 is now open.

As part of the process, ICOS is calling on its members to complete an online survey to gauge training and development priorities for the industry.

In addition, training support letters from member companies are key. “These letters of support are vital, so if you haven’t completed one as yet, please contact us, so we can send you out some samples,” it said in its notice today.

The deadline for the ICOS Skillnet Application Process is 3 October.

Over the past two years more than 3,000 co-operative staff have attended training courses offered by ICOS Skillnet, across a wide range of programmes. In total are are more than 80 to choose from. Some €400k is allocated to co-operatives towards training and development costs over the past two years.

Skillnets is a state-funded, enterprise-led support body dedicated to the promotion and facilitation of training and upskilling as key elements in sustaining Ireland’s national competitiveness.

ICOS members include many of Ireland’s dairy, livestock, fish and wholesale co-ops among others and its represent 150,000 individual members.