What is an Apprenticeship?

The standards-based apprenticeship programme (known as 'trailblazers') was launched in England in 2013 following the Richards Review of Apprenticeships which concluded that there was a need to redefine what an apprenticeship was, and that the original traditional values of an apprenticeship needed to be reinstated. The report made a number of recommendations and taken on board by the Government for the trailblazer programme and set out in their English Apprenticeships 2020 vision document.

A set of principles were established that would puts the employers in the driving seat, increase the quality and consistency of apprenticeships, simplify the system to aid understanding, and give employers purchasing power and choice in the delivery of an apprenticeship There are now a large number of occupations either available for delivery or under development and those approved or in development can be viewed below on the FInd An Apprenticeship section.

The existing apprenticeship framework within England has been phased out and replaced by the standards-led apprenticeships. There are no changes planned for apprenticeships administered through Scotland and Wales and continue to be offered through the existing framework programme.

Apprenticeship Development

Employers can form a consortium and become a trailblazer development group to set a standard for an occupation though making a submission, providing no other standard exists, or overlaps other standards. The group should consist of at least 10 employers with 2 small employers (less than 50 employed) being present, and chaired by one of the employers.

The group’s role is to develop the standard which set out the skills, knowledge and behaviours for the occupation and the end point assessment, being the measurement of the competencies for the occupation, ensure the apprentice is ‘job-ready’ at the end of the apprenticeship. In determining the standard, the occupation requires at least 12 months of rigorous training - with 20% of that time allocated towards off-the-job’ training.

CPA Apprenticeship Development Management

The CPA have provided a project-management service to the employer development groups for these trailblazers:

  • Lifting Technican Level 2 (completed)
  • Construction Plant Operative Level 2 (completed)
  • Construction Equipment Maintenance Engineering  - Mechanic - Level 2 (completed) and Technician - Level 3 (in development)
  • Hire Controller (Plant, Tools & Equipment) Level 2 (completed)

The CPA will further act as a public point of contact for each trailblazer and will post updates and draft documentation for public review.

Apprenticeship Delivery - Supporting Employers

To assist CPA Members in navigating the process of identifying approved training providers, assessment organisations and other aspects on employing apprentices, the Association has appointed an Apprenticeship/Skills Delivery Ambassador, Paul Skitt,  who is working with the providers to encourage the take-up and advise them on the particular aspects of each of the plant-based occupations. Paul is further working with CPA Members in guiding them through the process on taking on apprentices and how the employers themselves can deliver the majority of the required training in-house.

Paul would be pleased to assist any CPA Member in navigating the registration and delivery aspect of apprenticeships and can be contacted at paul.skitt@cpa.uk.net

CCATF Membership

The CPA are also members and supporters of the Cross-industry Apprenticeship Task Force (CCATF)  which is a cross-industry initiative designed to increase employer engagement in apprenticeship training and both communicates positive messages to employers regarding training and apprenticeships and influence government policy to ensure  the best environment is created for construction apprenticeship training.

Find an Apprenticeship

Further information about apprenticeships can be obtained from the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education

Available Apprenticeships and a List of Training Providers and Assessment Organisations

Plant Occupations Apprenticeships