We know the benefits that apprenticeships can bring to apprentices and businesses alike. They’re one of the best ways to train individuals in their job role and teach them skills that have practical and real-world applications that help both their business and the UK economy grow.

What’s the Healthcare Situation?

Although multiple sectors across the UK are currently experiencing a skills shortage, no sector feels this shortage more keenly than healthcare.

According to Health Education England (HEE), the NHS is currently short of 42,000 staff including nurses, midwives and therapists. Staff shortages are particularly bad in mental health services, with more than 20,000 positions vacant for mental health staff in the English NHS. There is also a demand for more ambulance staff, with ambulance services in England short of almost 1,000 frontline staff.

There are multiple factors that contribute to this staff shortage. Firstly, the UK’s growing ageing population will require more healthcare services, putting more strain on the NHS and private health services. The clinical workforce is also ageing. UK nurses have an average age of 42 and 29% of nurses are aged over 50. When these workers retire, there will be a huge shortage of staff in the industry, which means that the healthcare sector must take action soon to deal with the future loss of these workers.

The current shortage of healthcare staff is already affecting the industry. According to a survey which interviewed more than 1,000 NHS employees, 80% of respondents including nurses, doctors and managers raised concerns about there being an insufficient amount of staff on duty to give patients high-quality care. One senior nurse who worked in a large A&E department said that she had to regularly manage over double the number of patients her department had capacity for, with another midwife adding that “on average, every other shift is short staffed.”

The HEE warns that the health service workforce will need to increase by 190,000 workers by 2027. The industry must be able to cope with this increase in demand for health care staff in the next few years.

So what’s the solution?

How Apprenticeships Can Help

Investing in apprenticeships is a great way to address the staff shortage problem in the healthcare industry and create a dedicated, capable and long-term workforce that will secure the future of the health service. Taking on apprentices also offers organisations a large range of benefits.

As we talked about in a previous blog, apprentices can offer businesses innovative solutions to old problems. They also increase productivity, as research has shown that employers who had an established apprenticeship programme had their productivity improved by 76%. Apprentices can also help decrease staff turnover, as nurturing apprentices throughout their programme can secure their loyalty to their company. Whitbread found that their turnover rates were 15% lower on the apprenticeship level, while nearly three-quarters of their apprentices stayed with the company for more than 12 months, compared to only a quarter of non-apprentices.

The NHS is subject to a public-sector target of 2.3% apprenticeship starts every year, which means that they already offer apprenticeships in a range of levels and careers. There are apprenticeships available across a range of jobs like Ambulance Practitioners, Clinical Healthcare Support, Emergency Care Assistance and many more.

There are many other healthcare apprenticeships out there. Some of the apprenticeships we offer End-Point Assessment for include Adult Care Worker, Healthcare Support Worker and Healthcare Assistant Practitioner. These apprenticeships will be vital in training staff to do the important, everyday work of the health service.

Adult Care Workers help provide support to individuals who face physical, emotional or intellectual challenges so that they can live as safely and independently as possible. Increasing the number of these apprenticeships will provide much needed care to the ageing UK population, as Adult Care Workers can work in residential or nursing homes, day centres, an individual’s own home and more establishments.

Healthcare Support Workers work as part of a team to deliver care to those who need it the most. They have a range of clinical duties including monitoring health conditions and tracking the recovery of their patients. An increase in Healthcare Support Worker apprenticeships will help a large variety of healthcare organisations, as after their programme, apprentices can work in hospitals, community clinics, mental health settings, GP surgeries and more.

Healthcare Assistant Practitioners work at a level above Healthcare Support Workers, and have a more in-depth understanding of the factors that influence health and ill-health. They will have skills and experience in a particular area of clinical practice. Upon completing their apprenticeship, Assistant Practitioners can work in most departments in the NHS. They will also be able to mentor healthcare assistants, trainee assistant practitioners and student nurses and provide support to the next generation of workers. If you’re interested in seeing the rest of the healthcare apprenticeships we offer EPA for, click here.

The good news is that there are already a large number of healthcare apprenticeships available. It is now up to healthcare organisations, both public and private, to promote and push the apprenticeships they offer. This way, they can increase their numbers and fill their staff shortage. They will also be rewarded in the long run with a large number of dedicated, quality staff that will help the health service survive for future generations.

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To keep up to date with the latest news from TQUK EPA, return to our blog or follow us on TwitterFacebook and Instagram.

See you around The Hive!

In this week’s installment of A View from the Inside, we chat with Kelle McQuade, TQUK’s Head of End-Point Assessment Organisation, about EPA, the Apprenticeship Levy, her pride in helping learners and what employers and training providers need to think about when conducting an End-Point Assessment.

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When I Grow Up…

Where are you from?

I started off in Milton Keynes, moved to Nottingham for ten years and then moved back to Milton Keynes for a long while… almost 25 years now!

Did you go to college or university?

Did A levels at college — French, Drama and History.

Why those?

Some of that was driven by my secondary school teachers. I had this one great French teacher. There were only three of us in her class at A level so the teaching experience was very close. History, I loved. I had another great teacher. He’s still teaching Music now and also just made his first movie. He was brilliant. And Drama just because I’m ever so dramatic.

What do you think your younger self would think of you today?

I think she might be surprised. I’m a little too sensible. I always wanted to be an ice skater. I equally thought I would do something within the performing arts. Turns out I can’t act, so that was out. But I definitely didn’t think I’d end up in education.

Would it really be so surprising?

When you’re young, you’re told you can do anything. You think you’ll grow up to be an actor or an astronaut. But then you turn around and say, “Hang on, this job that I was only supposed to be in for 15 months turned out to be a 15 year career.” You let things grow organically and learn not be too prescriptive about taking a particular path.

Beginning in education

When some people look back on their careers, they see the path they took as almost inevitable. Did that ever happen to you?

Yeah, actually.

The first teaching role I had was working with NEET learners aged 16-25 through the Prince’s Trust trying to give people a second chance.

It wasn’t a traditional classroom setting. When I was working at the leisure centre, I set up a rookie lifeguard programme. It was for learners who had been on their swimming lesson programme and wanted to know what came next. It kept them engaged.

We applied and got accredited to deliver the course. It was from there that a couple of lessons got taken on by a couple of schools. One of them was in one of the more deprived areas of Milton Keynes.

Sometimes, the internally suspended students would end up in our bar area. When the PE lessons were happening in the leisure centre, they weren’t allowed to take part, but they also weren’t allowed to be home. I ended up just talking to some of these students.

I remember one of them gave me so much abuse. He wanted to call everyone every name under the sun. But one day, I said to him, “What happens if I tell you my name, and you call me that?”

I don’t know how it happened, but it worked. The next time I saw him he was like, “Oh, Kelle mate, how are you?” And I thought, “Wow.” So I said, “I’m good, how are you? How was your day?” He’d say he wasn’t back in lessons yet because this happened and that happened, so we sat down and had a chat. Every time he came in he seemed a little bit calmer and a little bit more respectful to the staff.

Did you keep in touch with him?

I still see him. And he seems to be a very well rounded person, very lovely. Lots of my students have gone on to do some really wonderful things.

MKC, TQUK and EPA

You were Head of Curriculum and Innovation at Milton Keynes College. What did that involve?

I was in charge of quality and professional development. That meant I organised cross-college teaching and learning fairs, looked after the teacher training curricula and reviewed our assessor and IQA qualifications. I also had a team of innovation leaders — outstanding practitioners who taught maybe ten hours every week and taught other members of the training staff to develop their practice. We asked ourselves: what could we do to improve the learner experience and make sure that teaching, learning and assessment were as good as they could be? We wanted our learners to achieve the best results, whether that meant going for jobs, applying for an apprenticeship or going into higher education.

What was your first impression of TQUK?

Very different from other Awarding Organisations. Talking to Andy didn’t feel like a sales pitch. It felt very relaxed and open. He seemed to understand what training centres’ frustrations were. That certainly struck a chord with me. I was head of quality and point of contact for all Awarding Organisations when I worked at the college. There were frustrations with other organisations and how they operated. So there was something different about what TQUK were offering.

When you started at TQUK you were BDM, then moved to head of EPAO. Could you talk more about that?  

It was almost a natural transition. My background lent itself a lot more to EPA. It was brilliant to be involved with creating the EPAO from day one. I was already involved in the thick of the EPA conversations, looking at the directions we might go in. We needed to identify a decision maker and I guess I was just best placed. When it came down to the day to day nitty gritty of EPA, that was where I needed to be.

When you came in, the whole sector was getting used to the new reforms. What was it like to jump into a new regulatory landscape?

Coming from a college into an Awarding Organisation is so different. I don’t think I really appreciated all the work that an Awarding Organisation does. I certainly underappreciated the massive amounts of work that TQUK does with the staff size. When I started, I was overwhelmed and impressed with what was being achieved by the team. I still continue to be.

But I think coming in at a time whilst I was having to learn all about awarding and not having been exposed to the behind the scenes aspects of that before, there was a certain comfort that everybody was learning about EPA at the same time. You’re laying the track as you go along with everybody else. Unfortunately, that means that sometimes the information you need isn’t there yet — we’re still experiencing that on a weekly basis. I get impatient — I want everything to be perfect, and I want it to be perfect right now!

Guiding employers and training providers through the final assessment

What’s one question you get asked by employers or training providers that you hear too often?

What we seem to get asked a lot about recently is the 20% off-the-job training. Sometimes with that, it’s just a matter of linking people to the right information. We also get a lot of questions about VAT and how that’s different for levy and non-levy payers — where the cut-off points and the variations are. These things can get pretty complex and they need to get sorted out.

What’s one thing you wish employers or training providers knew already going into EPA?

The one thing I would say is that just because it’s called ‘End-Point Assessment’ doesn’t mean they don’t have to think about it until the very end. You need to start thinking about it at the very beginning because you need to know what that assessment is going to look like. We expect to have employers or training providers knocking at the door saying they’ve got a learner at Gateway, can we help? People should come to us at the start. That way, we could advise on the best practices throughout the process. We expect to see that shift over the next six months.

In the FE media, the reforms seem to be fairly controversial. Employers and training providers are raising concerns about how to implement the off-the-job training requirement and how the Apprenticeship Levy isn’t working. How do you address those concerns and still get people on your side?

One thing we always try to do is take the headache away from the partners we work with. We make it clear from the beginning that we know what we’re doing and understand assessment. We were very early to market with EPA so we learned some very valuable lessons with an initial low volume of learners. We’re now so well-versed that the volume has increased massively and we’re able to pass those key messages and lessons onto employers. It’s important for us to be that calm face that can offer reassurance and provide answers where we can. And where we can’t, we’re able to make some pragmatic, educated assessments of the situation. We have a reputation for being one of the best and most knowledgeable EPAOs in England — and we want to keep it that way.

Thoughts and reflections

Looking back on your time in education, what’s the one thing you’ve accomplished that you’re most proud of?

I’m really proud when I see a learner — whether it’s a student or a member of staff — achieve their goals. I get to think, “I had something to do with that.” Those are the things that matter, and that’s why we do what we do — to see the end product of the services we deliver.

What about situations you look back on that make you think, “I could’ve done that better”?

When I was first teaching the NEET program covering social skills and social development, half my students were older than I was. Sometimes, you can struggle when you’re trying to offer help and it isn’t being accepted. But it isn’t until you’re a bit older that you can reflect back and think, “They weren’t in a place to acknowledge or receive that help. It wasn’t about you. It wasn’t personal.”

You’re one of the only real athletes in the office. Was exercise always a big part of your life?

I’ve always been very sporty, played hockey and netball. I’ve always been very accident-prone too. As we sit here I’m three weeks into a sprained ankle. (Laughs.)

Where do you see yourself in ten years?

Mai Tais on a beach! (Laughs.)

Professionally, who knows? I don’t try to predict these things – the landscape in education is always changing. If you told me two years ago I’d be head of EPAO for an Awarding Organisation, I wouldn’t have believed you. I just enjoy the ride.

Lightning round!

You’ve now entered the lightning round! You must answer the following questions within 3 seconds or less!!

Oh God!

Who do you think would win in a fight: old Godzilla or new Godzilla?

Haven’t seen either, so couldn’t say.

Men or women?

Women.

How many streets have you lived on?

Too many, probably about 20.

Favourite member of Take That?

Gary Barlow.

What animal does Ash have tattooed on his arm?

I think it’s supposed to be a bee but it ended up being a wasp.

Love Island or Survivor?

Neither!

Favourite person in the office?

Katie, for sure.

Biggest pet peeve?

People who eat too loudly.

Favourite flavour of Fanta?

Lemon, but only while on holiday.

What is the meaning of love?

When you feel fizzy.

Like Fanta…

Yeah.

Thanks for your time!

Thanks!

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To keep up to date with the latest news from TQUK EPA, return to our blog or follow us on TwitterFacebook and Instagram.

See you around The Hive!

Our EPA team is constantly working hard to add to the list of apprenticeship standards we deliver End-Point Assessment for. As a result, we’re in the works to deliver EPA for five more standards in the very near future!

Here’s a sneak peek of all the standards to come:

Teaching Assistant

Teaching Assistants can work with students across all ages in Primary, Special and Secondary education, including those who have special educational needs or emotional vulnerabilities. Their primary role is to support their class teacher and enhance their pupils’ learning by ensuring that they understand the work set, know their learning objectives and stay on task in order to make sufficient progress.

In this apprenticeship, apprentices will learn key skills such as how to support their pupils towards independent learning, how to implement effective behavior management strategies and how to work closely with teachers to ensure that their own contributions align with the teaching objectives.

The End-Point Assessment components for the Teaching Assistant Apprenticeship include:

  • Practical Observation with a Question & Answer session
  • Professional Discussion with a Portfolio of Evidence included

Successful apprentices can progress into a number of career paths in the Educational sector such as Higher Level Teaching Assistant, Assistant Teacher and Teacher.

IT Technical Salesperson

An IT Technical Salesperson specialises in selling the technical products and services of a company, such as data storage and cloud services. They must maintain good relationships with existing clients and approach potential customers with the aim of winning new business. They should also maintain a good understanding of existing and new technologies that are emerging.

In this apprenticeship, apprentices will gain knowledge of the basic elements of computer systems, learn how to negotiate and close sales and acquire a thorough understanding of the business products they are selling.

The End-Point Assessment components for the IT Technical Salesperson Apprenticeship include:

  • Summative Portfolio
  • Synoptic Project
  • Employer Reference
  • Interview

Those who are successful in completing their apprenticeship are eligible to apply for registration onto the Register of IT Technicians.

Associate Project Manager

Associate Project Managers help manage business projects by using their resources and management skills. They will know what needs to be achieved, how it will be achieved, how long it will take, how much it will cost and will work with the project team to achieve the required outcomes.

In this apprenticeship, apprentices will learn valuable skills such as how to develop project budgets, how to prepare and maintain project schedules and how to respond to any project issues.

The End-Point Assessment components for the Associate Project Manager apprenticeship include:

  • Presentation supported by a Portfolio of Evidence
  • Professional Discussion supported by the same Portfolio of Evidence

On starting the apprenticeship, apprentices can become student members of the Association for Project Management (APM). After they complete their apprenticeship successfully, they can then become eligible for associate membership. Full membership can later be attained through further experience and professional development.

Learning and Development Practitioner

Learning and Development (L&D) Practitioners are responsible for identifying learning and training needs within a business and designing training programmes to improve their organisation.

In this apprenticeship, apprentices will learn valuable skills such as how to identify and analyse learning needs, how to design training resources to meet these needs and how to monitor a learner’s progress to deliver motivational and developmental feedback.

The End-Point Assessment components for the L&D Practitioner Apprenticeship include:

  • Work Based Project and Professional Discussion
  • Presentation based on a Learning Journal

Apprentices who successfully complete their apprenticeship are eligible to apply for Associate membership of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) or any other professional body that recognizes this apprenticeship within its membership criteria.

Learning and Development Consultant / Business Partner

Learning and Development (L&D) Consultants are responsible for identifying areas of improvement in individuals, groups and organisations and finding appropriate learning and development solutions to improve their organisation. L&D Consultants must also measure the outcomes and return on investment of any learning interventions they implement. This role can exist in a range of organisations that span across the private, public and third sector.

In the apprenticeship, apprentices will learn a range of valuable skills including how to identify organisational skills gaps and risks, how to present a range of innovative solutions to fill these gaps and how to construct and manage an L&D project.

The End-Point Assessment components for the L&D Consultant Apprenticeship include:

  • Work Based Project with Professional Discussion
  • Presentation and Q&A based on a Learning Journal

Just as with the L&D Practitioner, apprentices who successfully complete their programme are eligible to apply for Associate membership of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) or any other professional body that recognizes this apprenticeship within its membership criteria.

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We hope you enjoyed that little taste of the new standards to come! If you’d like to see the existing range of apprenticeship standards we provide EPA for, click here.

To keep up to date with the latest news from TQUK EPA, return to our blog or follow us on TwitterFacebook and Instagram.

See you around The Hive!

“Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things.” – Peter Drucker

Managers are an integral part of every business. Although their day-to-day duties differ, managers must oversee their employees, manage their budget and departmental goals and carry out all their duties in accordance with their company’s vision. A great manager juggles all of these elements seamlessly while creating a fantastic work environment where their employees are motivated and happy to work.

We thought we’d get some insight from our wonderful TQUK staff members about what makes a great manager. Here are their thoughts:

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Thomas Concannon, Junior Graphic Designer: “A great manager is able to communicate well with their team and doesn’t act as if there are any barriers between themselves and their staff. They also give constructive feedback so that their employees can learn from their mistakes and grow as a result.”
Kit Jenkin, Content Officer: “A great manager is someone who’s able to effectively motivate their team, discovering the best qualities in every person and creating roles and environments where those qualities can be fully realised. Managing also means showing leadership and providing clear direction and boundaries.”

Samuel Rossiter, Content Officer: “I think a great manager leads by example and creates a positive and rewarding work environment which their staff are happy to walk into every morning. I also think great managers trust their employees, and allow them the space and time to manage their own work. This empowers their staff and allows them to thrive!”

Matt Garrod, End-Point Assessment Officer: “A great manager knows how to keep their team and staff motivated throughout the week. Regardless of whether it’s a Monday or a Friday, they should receive the same level of enthusiasm no matter what!”

Ash Smith, Client Relationship Team Leader: A great manager understands the strengths and weaknesses of their team and uses this knowledge to properly develop their members. They’re also great in bringing their ideas to the table, using their team’s strengths to work together and bring these to life. It also helps if they can keep team morale high!”

Rochelle Crichton, End-Point Assessment Team Leader: “A great manager is approachable, open to suggestions and actively looking for changes and improvements to help their team and department. A great manager is also happy to guide and assist their staff when necessary. They should understand the pressure and stress you may be under and be appreciative of you as an individual.”

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There you go! Our TQUK members value honesty, approachability, great communication and the ability to develop their team in their managers. We’re grateful to our Senior Management Team for embodying these values here and driving TQUK forwards while helping their employees every step of the way!

If you’re interested in pursuing a managerial position, then why not earn while you learn and enroll in a management apprenticeship? To start exploring, check out the range of management apprenticeship standards we provide End-Point Assessment for here.

To keep up to date with the latest news from TQUK EPA, return to our blog or follow us on TwitterFacebook and Instagram.

See you around The Hive!

If you’re interested in enrolling in an apprenticeship, then you’ve come to the perfect place. To give you that final push towards applying for an opening, here are five awesome reasons to become an apprentice!

1. Earn While You Learn

The cost of post-16 education can be a massive stumbling block for many people.

English universities can charge up to £9,000 per year for an undergraduate degree for local students, which totals £27,000 for a typical three year undergraduate degree. Many students must borrow more than this from the government to cover other living costs, so at the end of their degree they may graduate with around £35,000 of debt.

Compared to university, not only is it free for apprentices to enroll in an apprenticeship, but you also earn an income while you work! Additionally, you must be paid for both your normal working hours and any apprenticeship training you undertake at your training provider throughout the week.

2. Incredible Range of Choice

There is a huge variety of apprenticeships offered by businesses of all sorts! You can now become an apprentice in sectors like agriculture, beauty, business and IT, engineering and so much more. So, regardless of what career you’re interested in, there will be an apprenticeship out there that’s perfect for you!

To start exploring, why not check out the range of apprenticeship standards we provide End-Point Assessment for?

3. Practical Work Experience

In an apprenticeship, most of your learning is done on the job. So, if you prefer to learn practically, then the style of training provided in an apprenticeship is perfect for you! Additionally, because you’ll be working in real work environments, you’ll learn loads of skills specific to your job and industry. This valuable work experience will put you a step above fresh graduates from university, as they often struggle to find work because of their lack of experience.

4. Great Option for School Leavers

The 2018 GCSE and A Level results were recently released and for 16-18 year olds leaving school, an apprenticeship is a great option to consider. Apprenticeships are designed to take individuals who have no experience in a role and fully train with the necessary skills and experience needed to excel in their job. This is perfect for school leavers who have little experience or training in their desired career, as they will gain all of this in their programme.

You also have a great chance of securing a job with your employer after your apprenticeship! 90% of apprentices stay in employment after their apprenticeship, with 71% of those staying with their apprentice employer after the end of their programme. In this tough job economy, apprenticeships are a great option to start off your career!

5. But Anyone Can Become An Apprentice!

Apprenticeships are a popular option for young people, but don’t be fooled! There is no age limit for an apprenticeship—anyone over the age of 16 not in full-time education can enroll. So, for those who are interested in changing their careers, or who’d like to move into a job that requires a different skill set, an apprenticeship is the perfect opportunity for a brand new start.

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If you’d like to see where an apprenticeship can take you, check out our blog on 5 Celebrities Who Started Out As Apprentices.

To keep up to date with the latest news from TQUK EPA, return to our blog or follow us on TwitterFacebook and Instagram.

See you around The Hive!

Hiring an apprentice brings a large range of benefits to your business while helping out the hundreds of thousands of people around the UK who are looking for work. Apprenticeships are designed to train individuals with little or no experience in a role into workers who have all the skills needed to excel in their job. As an employer, the time you spend investing in your apprentices will help them become excellent employees dedicated to improving your business.

Here are five fantastic reasons why you should hire an apprentice:

1. You Increase Your Productivity

Hiring an apprentice is a fantastic way for your business to grow its talent and develop a motivated and highly skilled workforce. Because apprentices earn while they learn, they’ll be trained in the latest industry knowledge while developing vital skills that’ll benefit your business, all the while receiving a wage.

An apprentice can also increase your company’s productivity! According to research conducted by the National Apprenticeship Service, employers who had an established apprenticeship programme reported that productivity in their workplace had improved by 76%, while 75% reported that hiring apprentices improved the quality of their product or service.

2. You Decrease Staff Turnover

Hiring an apprentice means training and nurturing them throughout their entire programme. Investing time and energy in apprentices like this can really secure their loyalty to your company and help decrease your staff turnover.

For example, Whitbread, the UK’s largest hotel, restaurant and coffee shop operator, focused on improving staff retention in their apprenticeship programme, as it was a business challenge for the organisation. Their findings were great: for entry level, back-office roles, turnover rates were 55%, while on the apprenticeship level this was reduced to 40%. Furthermore, when calculating retention rates, nearly three-quarters of their apprentices stayed with the company for more than 12 months, whereas only a quarter of non-apprentices did.

As a result of these numerous apprenticeship benefits, the company has set an ambitious target to recruit 1,500 more apprentices into the business over the next two years.

3. You Benefit From Fresh Thinking

Apprentices can bring new ideas into your organisation and develop many more as they gain experience in their role.

CBI Magazine asked a variety of businesses why they hired apprentices. Tricia Vincent, Training and Competency Manager at Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy, said that “Inquisitive and curious minds enable us as a business to progress, develop and innovate. Our apprentices complete some quite complex projects that push not only their newly acquired engineering skills, but also encourage their ability to problem solve. We empower them to make suggestions on improvements and present their ideas.”

At the Manchester Airport, Press Office Manager Seb Thompson also talked about the benefits he received from having a social media apprentice: “It has made a real difference and brought a new perspective that you don’t get through the normal recruitment process. They are totally immersed in the digital world. And as they learn and develop with their qualification we have seen them bring in a wealth of innovative ideas and trends so the whole team actually ends up learning something new.”

4. You Contribute To Your Community

Hiring apprentices ensures that your business gives back to the local community by helping combat youth unemployment in your area. By doing this, you’ll help create a skilled workforce that’ll drive your company forward and enhance your organisation’s image in the process.

According to research conducted by the Centre for Business and Economics Research in 2015, offering apprenticeships was perceived by two-thirds of the public as contributing to society and providing opportunities for young people. As a result, five million consumers are more likely to buy from an apprentice employer and one in four consumers would even pay more for goods and services from companies that employ apprentices.

5. You Use Your Apprenticeship Levy Contribution

If your business has a payroll of £3 million or more, then you must pay the apprenticeship levy whether you employ an apprentice or not. This levy is charged at a rate of 0.5% of your company’s pay bill, and as an employer, you’ll be given 18 months to spend each payment.

So why not use it? By hiring apprentices, you can ensure that your levy doesn’t go to waste and spend that money on attracting great young talent and developing your staff to benefit your business in the long run.

A win-win all around!

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And there you have it — five great reasons why your company should hire an apprentice! If you’d like to see the range of standards we provide End-Point Assessment for, click here. Otherwise, to keep up to date with the latest news from TQUK EPA, return to our blog or follow us on TwitterFacebook and Instagram.

See you around The Hive!

TQUK EPA was the first End-Point Assessment Organisation to pass apprentices on three new standards, including the Adult Care Worker, Commis Chef and Hospitality Team Member standards.

Now, we’ve done it a fourth time.

In partnership with Creative Support, TQUK EPA is proud to announce that we’ve passed the first apprentice on the Lead Adult Care Worker Standard!

Lee Wild became the first apprentice to be passed on the Lead Adult Care Worker standard on the 1st August 2018. She received a Merit overall for her hard work, and both TQUK and Creative Support are delighted with the results.

TQUK EPA and Creative Support have worked together to pass apprentices in a variety of standards. We passed the very first apprentice, Sona Peskin, and the first apprentice in the UK to receive a Distinction, Joseph Bailey, on the Adult Care Worker standard.

The Lead Adult Care Worker standard is the next level up from the Adult Care Worker standard. Lead Adult Care Workers help care for adults with support needs so that they can achieve their personal goals and live as independently as possible. They are also expected to provide frontline leadership and guidance to other care workers.

Committed and Hard-Working

Everyone working with Lee was impressed with the hard work and commitment she displayed throughout the programme.

Her On Programme Assessor, Miltos Baralos, said:

It was clear throughout her apprenticeship that Lee had the experience and knowledge needed to carry out her duties. We worked together—she showed interest in developing her knowledge and I supported her to achieve this. We had effective communication and regular contact. During the face to face meetings, we had Professional Discussions on different subjects for her qualification and Lee found this very helpful.

After she completed her mock Multiple Choice Test, I contacted Lee and we went through her results together. I also discussed with her, in more detail, the components she would need to be aware of during her Professional Discussion, which was the concluding assessment element to her End-Point Assessment.

Before Lee’s EPA meeting with her End-Point Assessor, I was contacted by TQUK to discuss the assessment arrangements. It was good for me to be contacted by the End-Point Assessor and the EPA Coordinator, as it felt very personal and helpful. I was happy with the approach given by TQUK, as they gave prompt feedback on the apprentice’s assessment outcomes, which was very important.”

Janet Glentworth, the Vocational Centre Manager for Creative Support, had this to say:

Creative Support are proud to train the first Lead Adult Care Worker apprentice. It was tough at times, as the standard was new to us all, but Lee and her assessor were willing to take the challenge on board, and this has resulted in Lee achieving a Merit. Lee and her assessor also commented on how much the apprenticeship training helped her develop a more rounded approach as a learner than only undertaking a diploma in Health and Social Care.

Receiving the End-Point Assessment through TQUK has also affirmed that Lee has met the national standard through their rigorous assessment. This has resulted in Creative Support achieving another first with TQUK.”

Kelle McQuade, Head of EPAO at TQUK, also chimed in with her thoughts:

We’re very excited that we’ve completed Lee as the first Lead Adult Care Worker Apprentice in the UK. Having now been the first EPAO to complete apprentices on four new standards, we’re really starting to flourish as an EPAO. Our organisation grows every day and we consistently keep adding new standards to our EPA offerings.

“We’ve worked with Creative Support in the past and have always been really pleased with the care and support they’ve provided their apprentices. This case has been no different—Creative Support have provided Lee with fantastic help from the very beginning and everyone involved in her programme, Miltos included, should be really proud of her achievement.

“I’d like to extend my congratulations to Lee and all the staff at Creative Support who’ve helped her on her journey. You should all be proud of yourselves! Here’s to TQUK and Creative Support achieving more firsts in the future!”

If you’d like to see the other apprenticeship standards we deliver End-Point Assessments for, then click here. To keep up to date with the latest news from TQUK EPA, return to our blog or follow us on TwitterFacebook and Instagram.

See you around The Hive!

We have some exciting news today!

TQUK EPA has been approved to deliver end-point assessment (EPA) for six more apprenticeship standards!

We look forward to working with our training providers to assess the next generation of professionals in retail, hospitality and catering.

Find details on our new standards below:

Retailer

Retailers can work in a variety of shops such as high street chains, supermarkets and department stores. They are dedicated to assisting customers and providing quality service that exceeds expectation. In this apprenticeship, apprentices will learn key skills such as how to serve customers in line with the brand’s standards, how to use a till and process payments and how to use a variety of sales techniques to complete sales.

The End-Point Assessment components for the Retailer Apprenticeship include:

  • A 30 minute On-Demand Test
  • A Practical Observation
  • A Professional Discussion

Successful apprentices can progress into team leading, supervisory or first line management roles within retail, higher level training or apprenticeships.

Retail Team Leader

A Retail Team Leader should deliver excellent customer service while providing critical support to managers. Retail Team Leaders can also guide and coordinate the work of the team when needed. In this apprenticeship, apprentices will learn key skills such as how to coach and support team members, how to coordinate the work of the team and how to hit financial targets by using resources effectively.

The End-Point Assessment components for the Retail Team Leader Apprenticeship include:

  • A 60 minute On-Demand Test
  • A Retail Business Project
  • A Professional Discussion

Successful apprentices can progress onto other retail management positions.

Retail Manager

A Retail Manager is responsible for delivering sales targets while providing a fantastic experience to customers. They must also lead their team to achieve their company’s vision and objectives. Apprentices will learn skills such as how to provide clear direction and leadership to their team, how to communicate marketing objectives to their members to drive results and how to ensure that members behave in line with the brand vision.

The End-Point Assessment components for the Retail Manager Apprenticeship include:

  • A Two Hour Written Exam
  • A Retail Business Project
  • A Professional Discussion

Successful apprentices can progress on to a retail store manager, senior retail manager or area manager position.

Chef De Partie

A Chef de Partie is responsible for running a specific section of a professional kitchen which they’re assigned. They usually manage a small team of workers and must make sure that all of their dishes go out on time while keeping their work station organised. Apprentices will learn valuable skills such as how to prepare, cook and finish a range of advanced culinary dishes, how to implement the correct food safety practices and how to handle and store ingredients to maintain quality.

The End-Point Assessment components for the Chef De Partie Apprenticeship include:

  • A Two Hour On-Demand Test
  • A Practical Observation
  • A Culinary Challenge Project and Observation
  • A 90 minute Professional Discussion

Successful apprentices can progress onto a senior culinary chef role.

Senior Chef Production Cooking

A Senior Production Chef is responsible for producing food in high volumes, both consistently and to a high quality. This role requires high energy, good organisational skills and excellent attention to detail. Apprentices will learn vital skills such as how to create standardized menu items, how to work to agreed practices to ensure a safe and hygienic kitchen and how to support team members to deliver high-quality products.

The End-Point Assessment Components for the Senior Chef Production Cooking apprenticeship include:

  • A Two Hour On-Demand Test
  • A Practical Observation
  • A Business Project
  • A 90 minute Professional Discussion

Apprentices who successfully pass can progress onto a higher level position within the kitchen, a higher level apprenticeship or further training.

Hospitality Manager 

A Hospitality Manager must be a highly motivated team leader who has excellent management skills and who thrives on providing outstanding customer service. Apprentices will learn how to manage finance to minimise costs within hospitality businesses, how to use operating models to help achieve the business vision and how to monitor customer satisfaction to ensure the product is delivered to the highest standards.

The End-Point Assessment Components for the Hospitality Manager Apprenticeship include:

  • A 90 minute On-Demand Test
  • A Business Project
  • A 90 minute Professional Discussion

After their apprenticeship, apprentices can work across a huge variety of organisations including bars, restaurants, cafes, hotels and more.

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If you’d like to see the full range of standards we provide EPAs for, visit our page here. Otherwise, to keep up to date with the latest news from TQUK EPA, return to our blog or follow us on TwitterFacebook and Instagram.

See you around The Hive!

 

How TQUK Can Help You

The new apprenticeship standards are designed to improve upon what’s gone before and help with the apprentice’s initial journey into their chosen career, before you know it, they’ll be on the road to success.

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