Setting up a Management Apprenticeship Programme


At a time when management performance has been identified as the biggest factor in boosting productivity, there is an urgent need for UK employers to raise their game when it comes to management and leadership.

The Government are tackling this head on by creating leadership and management apprenticeship trailblazing standards that have been created by employers for employers.  For many years, apprenticeships have been focused on getting school leavers into entry level technical roles.  This is an out of date perception.  The new reality is that management apprenticeships will radically change the way that management training is delivered and funded.

Management apprenticeships benefit employers and individuals, and by boosting the skills of the workforce they help to improve economic productivity. The new management apprenticeships are structured, work-based training programmes that are delivered and assessed against the new leadership and management apprenticeship standards.

Management Apprentices will benefit from the following:

  • Become more marketable– a qualification speaks volumes, giving apprentices the recognition that comes with letters after your name and a head start when progressing their management career
  • Gain professional recognition – Apprentices will gain an industry recognised Management Apprenticeship as well as gain a management qualification recognised throughout the UK and Europe.
  • Improved management and leadership skills– Apprentices can sharpen their professional edge and enhance their effectiveness as a manager within their business. Leadership confidence and competence is raised immediately through gaining an extensive toolkit of proven techniques, skills, and tools.

Trailblazer Management Apprenticeship Journey

The management standards that have been introduced for apprentices are as follows:

  • Level 3 Standard for Team Leaders/ Supervisors
  • Level 5 Standard for Operations/ Departmental Manager

The Apprenticeship Journey for both management apprenticeship standards is presented below:

Apprentice Enrolment & Preparation

Employers may recruit apprentices or identify talented individuals within the business to attend an apprenticeship programme.  To ensure that apprentices are engaged as early as possible, it is important to plan the communications that underpin the programme, i.e. how will apprentices be briefed, how will their line managers be involved, how can ‘buy in’ to the process be achieved, who will sponsor this development within the business etc.

On Programme Learning and Assessment

In order to develop the skills, knowledge and behaviours detailed in the standard, apprentices will attend a structured training programme over the course of 18-24 months.

A requirement of the standard is that apprentices carry out 20% of their learning ‘off-the-job’.  This supports the vocational aspect of the programme to apply learning in the workplace.



Before end-point assessment takes place, the provider and the employer must be confident that the apprentice has developed all the knowledge, skills and behaviours defined in the apprenticeship standard. This stage is referred to as the ‘Gateway’.

Independent End-Point Assessment


The purpose of end-point assessment (‘EPA’) is to test the entire apprenticeship standard and requires apprentices to demonstrate the knowledge, skills and behaviours as set out in the standard. It is the final synoptic assessment, conducted by an independent assessment organisation. This forms an integral part of the SFA’s quality assurance for the Apprenticeship reforms.

The EPA process is robust, comprising a range of assessment methods, to ensure that all components of the Standard have been fully tested and met.  The programme should fully prepare apprentices for EPA.

To discuss how to align existing management programmes to new trailblazer management standards or initiate a new programme of development for management apprentices, please get in touch to set up a telephone appointment by e-mailing

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