local government

Delivering Apprenticeships Across the Public Sector

local government

08:45 - 16:20

Tuesday 4 June 2019

Central Manchester

This Forum provides participants with an excellent opportunity to examine successful apprenticeship delivery methods across the public sector. Attendees will be updated on the transition between the apprenticeship framework and the Institute for Apprenticeship’s new standards, as well as how to obtain the government’s £3.2 billion worth of funding to support the sector in meeting the 2.3% apprenticeship target. In addition, award winning organisations will share guidance around how to deliver high-quality apprenticeship schemes through establishing robust local partnerships, collaborating with key stakeholders, and tailoring programmes to meet employer needs.


This Forum is designed for the wider Public Sector. Typical job titles will include:

  • Heads of Human Resources
  • Apprenticeship and Training Managers
  • Heads of Recruitment
  • Personnel Officers
  • Heads of Learning and Organisational Development
  • Heads of Organisation Transformation
  • Higher Education Policy Advisers
  • Learning and Development Leads
  • Economic Development Managers
  • Workforce Programmes Operational Managers
  • Careers and Apprenticeship Managers
  • Project Managers

This Forum is also open to Fire and Rescue Services, Higher Education, Policing, Health, Private and Voluntary sectors to encourage debate and networking

Key Speakers Confirmed:
  • Jessica Bushell, Employer Engagement Strategy Senior Manager, Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA)
  • Paul Warner, Director of Research & Development, Association of Employment and Learning Providers (AELP)
  • Darren Shaw, Head of Assessment, Institute for Apprenticeships
  • Claire Paul, Director, Leadership Development & New Talent, BBC Academy
View the agenda and additional speakers


Registration, Refreshments and Networking


Chair's Welcome Address

Tom Richmond, Senior Research Fellow, Policy Exchange (invited)


Morning Keynote: Driving Forward the Public Sector Apprenticeship Agenda

  • Sharing guidance around effective and efficient use of the apprenticeship levy by public sector employers to help meet the 2.3% target
  • Exploring the impact of changes to apprenticeship funding since August 2018, where the number of funding bands was extended from 15 to 30
  • Detailing the additional funding available for providers training 16-18 year olds, apprentices who require learning support, and care leavers aged 16-24
  • Providing guidance around the submission of public sector apprenticeship target reports, in advance of the reporting deadline in September 2019
  • Explaining the utility of the ESFA’s online apprenticeship service, which was recognised as ‘digital public service innovation of the year’ at the Digital Leaders Awards 2018 and used by over 13,000 employers

Jessica Bushell, Employer Engagement Strategy Senior Manager, Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) (CONFIRMED)


Special Keynote: Supporting Providers to Deliver High-Quality Apprenticeship Programmes in the Public Sector

  • Providing a raft of best-practice resources to apprenticeship trainers and providers around topics such as reasonable adjustments, pricing and eligible costs, and off-the-job training
  • Sharing results from the AELP 2018 Member Survey relating to opinions on the levy, and discussing ways to improve the current allocation system
  • Understanding the importance of employers selecting the correct end point assessment organisation for their apprentices
  • Consulting key stakeholders on plans for the development of new apprenticeship standards, such as the proposed Business Administration standard, and supporting their journey towards submission

Paul Warner, Director of Research & Development, Association of Employment and Learning Providers (AELP) (CONFIRMED)


Special Keynote: Providing Apprenticeship Opportunities for Graduates and Non-Graduates

  • Examining the process and procedures put in place to combine comprehensive recruitment with talent development, ensuring apprentices have a clear career pathway
  • Outlining the lessons learnt when rolling out a large scale recruitment scheme which sees the BBC offer over 200 apprenticeship/trainee opportunities for young people
  • Examining the different methods implemented when attracting graduate and non-graduate talent into the public sector
  • Highlighting how the BBC ensures it is offering new opportunities in emerging areas, such as Cyber Security and Research & Development, to ensure they continue to attract high-quality candidates

Claire Paul, Director, Leadership Development & New Talent, BBC Academy (CONFIRMED)


Questions and Answers Session


Refreshments and Networking


Case Study: Creating Apprenticeship Opportunities Through Local Authority Supply Chains

  • Outlining how 125 construction apprenticeships and 42 business apprenticeships were negotiated through Camden Borough Council’s 2017/18 planning framework
  • Promoting STEAM careers by collaborating with science, technology and education organisations around King’s Cross to develop apprenticeship opportunities
  • Working closely with 36 local employers to increase the number and range of higher level apprenticeships amongst local employers and successfully establishing work experience placements in Camden
  • Organising free supplementary training to apprentices in a range of essential skills such as professional writing, minute taking and presentations, enabling apprentices to perform at a higher standard
  • Providing tailored support from the application process to completing the apprenticeship with the employer
  • Highlighting the processes and procedures implemented along the council’s supply chains to deliver apprenticeship opportunities and ensure a high-quality learning experience

Winner of the 2018 London Borough Apprenticeship Awards for ‘Best Work with Supply Chain and Local Businesses’ Councillor

Abdul Hai, Cabinet Member for Young People and Cohesion, Camden Borough Council (invited)


Case Study: Effectively Coordinating Apprenticeship Delivery Through a Regional Jobs Hub

  • Exploring how the Greater Manchester Apprenticeship Hub is able to support the apprenticeship agenda by pooling expertise and resources from a wide variety of partners across the city region
  • Providing a forum for collaboration between organisations with an interest in supporting apprenticeships
  • Offering grant funding for a range of projects that support the delivery of high-quality apprenticeships, such as the Apprenticeship Ambassadors scheme, placing real apprentices into schools and colleges to advocate for apprenticeships as a route into a successful career
  • Outlining progress made on the delivery of a £6 million City Deal to revitalise local industries and drive growth through apprenticeships
  • Maximising employer take up of apprenticeships in key sectors by improving information sharing, providing advice and guidance services for young people, and developing the capacity of providers to ensure supply matches demand

Councillor Sean Fielding, Lead for Education, Skills and Apprenticeships, Greater Manchester Combined Authority (CONFIRMED)


Case Study: Delivering the Nursing Degree Apprenticeship to Effectively Increase Workforce Supply

  • Facilitating trainees in working across a wide range of clinical placements to accord with Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) learning requirements
  • Partnering with the University of Leeds to support on-the-job training with off-the-job learning
  • Reporting on the successes of the programme with respect to the first cohort who started in June; evaluating any challenges faced in the process
  • Providing guidance on how to deliver excellent training for apprentices without comprising the quality of patient care

Aislinn O’Hara, Learning and Organisational Development Manager, and Apprenticeship Lead, Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust (CONFIRMED)

Katie Robinson, Head of Nursing for Workforce and Education, Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust (CONFIRMED)


Questions and Answers Session


Lunch and Networking


Afternoon Keynote: Leading and Supporting Development of Rigorous Apprenticeship Standards

  • Sharing progress around the ongoing transition away from Apprenticeship Frameworks and towards the more rigorous Apprenticeships Standards; examining the impact on both providers and employers
  • Providing guidance on successfully completing an end-point assessment plan, apprenticeship occupation proposal and forming a trailblazer group, in order to develop a new apprenticeship standard
  • Suggesting effective methods for promoting newly-approved apprenticeship standards to other key stakeholders, such as training providers, end-point assessment organisations and other employers
  • Outlining the four ways in which a trailblazer group can choose to deliver External Quality Assurance (EQA) for a standard, and advising on which models are most appropriate for particular contexts or occupations

Darren Shaw, Head of Assessment, Institute for Apprenticeships (CONFIRMED)


Special Keynote: Strategically Working Towards an Ambitious Apprenticeship Target - Lessons From the Civil Service

  • Committing to delivering 30,000 quality apprenticeship starts by 2020, representing 2.3% of the Civil Service workforce in England, through the Civil Service Apprenticeship Strategy
  • Actively promoting and marketing apprenticeship opportunities beyond traditional recruitment networks to acquire talent from a diverse range of backgrounds
  • Putting data-driven procedures in place to inform the right policy interventions to increase the percentage of apprentices from BAME backgrounds
  • Engaging with schools and colleges around the country, informing students about the role of government and raising awareness of apprenticeship routes and pathways
  • Embedding apprenticeships into workforce development pathways, and targeting key capability gaps within the existing Civil Service workforce to ensure up-skilling meets organisational needs

Julie Taylor, Chair, Civil Service Apprenticeship Programme Board (invited)


Questions and Answers Session


Refreshments and Networking


Case Study: Effectively Delivering Apprenticeships and Exceeding the 2.3% Target in Local Government

  • Exceeding the Government’s public sector apprenticeship target of 2.3% for 2017/18 by 0.11%
  • Changing hearts and minds – overcoming barriers and transforming internal culture to effectively promote and deliver apprenticeships
  • Making the most effective and efficient use of the levy and exploring how the local authority shares it with local employers
  • Sharing guidance around effective procurement practices and partnership working with apprenticeship providers to create opportunities around themes such as occupational therapy and social work
  • Developing career pathways for young people in the workplace by making use of the additional funding for 16-18 year olds
  • Linking the apprenticeship agenda with wider city development and regeneration projects

Roland Bryant, Apprenticeship Lead, Portsmouth City Council (CONFIRMED)


Case Study: Developing and Delivering High-Quality Apprenticeships Programmes for Emergency Services

  • Addressing the dual challenge of the public sector apprenticeship target and an ageing workforce through a high-quality apprenticeship programme
  • Sharing guidance around implementing an approach to apprenticeship delivery which has strategic leadership, is embedded in workforce planning and development, and has buy-in across the organisation
  • Offering additional in-house training opportunities to apprentices around writing CVs, interview skills and advanced IT skills to enhance employment mobility
  • Encouraging existing employees to engage with apprenticeships at a higher level, such as the Leadership and Management apprenticeships Levels 5-7, freeing up entry-level roles for new starters
  • Outlining key benefits of developing an apprenticeship programme, such as a pool of candidates trained to KFRS standards, who understand the ethos of the organisation, and with the potential to be recruited to “on-call”
  • Embedding an “Apprenticeship Champion” to engage nationally with wider apprenticeship scheme development, as well as individual standards review and development

Sue Flavin, Head of Learning and Development, Kent Fire and Rescue Service (invited)


Questions and Answers Session


Chair's Summary and Close

*Programme subject to change 


Nearly two years on since the introduction of the Apprenticeship Levy, the public sector is still struggling to meet the 200,000 new apprentice starters it was targeted to deliver by 2020. In the year leading up to November 2018, there were 45,314 new apprenticeship starts across the whole of the public sector, which constitutes 1.4% out of a total workforce of 3.2 million at the start of the year. Clearly, this demonstrates that the public sector still has some way to go towards meeting its target by the 2020 deadline.

Moreover, the public sector is expected to play a major role in assisting apprenticeship growth across the UK more generally, to assist in reaching the target of 3 million apprentice starts by 2020. To help meet this target and deliver the required number of apprenticeships, the government introduced the Apprenticeship Levy in April 2017 to help fund them. Upon its introduction, the Levy was expected to allow employers to address skills gaps, improve retention, reduce spend on agency support, and create embedded progression paths for the existing workforce.

However, since the levy was introduced apprenticeship starts have fallen, with numbers down nearly a quarter in 2017/18 compared with the year before. The Apprenticeship Levy and 2.3% recruitment target has drastically changed the public sector apprenticeship landscape. Failure to successfully deliver first-class apprenticeship programmes could see the public sector lose high-quality young candidates and limit the potential of the entire sector.

The onus is now on public sector institutions to work constructively with training providers, employers and the wider community to create apprenticeship opportunities and promote the valuable and viable careers that the sector can offer young people across the UK.

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