October 2014


New Qualifications for Business Administration, Customer Service, and Management and Leadership

On the 1st September 2014 Skills CFA’s new apprenticeship qualifications for Business Administration, Customer Service and Management and Leadership went live.  These qualifications sit within the corresponding apprenticeship frameworks for England, Wales and Northern Ireland.  The following qualifications are now available:

Business Administration

  • Level 1 Certificate in Business Administration
  • Level 2 Diploma in Business  Administration
  • Level 3 Diploma in Business Administration
  • Level 4 NVQ Diploma in Business  Administration

Management and Leadership

  • Level 2 Diploma in Team Leading
  • Level 3 Diploma in Management
  • Level 4 NVQ Diploma in Management
  • Level 5 NVQ Diploma in Management and Leadership
  • Level 7 NVQ Diploma in Strategic Management and Leadership

Customer Service

  • Level 1 Certificate in Customer Service
  • Level 2 Diploma in Customer Service
  • Level 3 Diploma in Customer Service
  • Level 4 NVQ Diploma in Customer Service

All new qualifications at levels 1, 2, and 3 now include the combined qualification, incorporating the previously used separate competence and knowledge qualifications. The combined qualification is compulsory for apprenticeships started on or after 1st September 2014. Separate NVQs and Technical certificates are no longer acceptable in the context of the new apprenticeship qualifications; however they can still be achieved as stand-alone qualifications. At Level 4 and above, NVQ qualifications have been developed. This means that for the Level 4 Business and Professional Administration Higher Apprenticeship, and the Level 4 and Level 5 Management Higher Apprenticeships, the new NVQs will sit alongside the current knowledge qualifications (with certain stipulations) or new knowledge qualifications that have been created with the new units.

In addition to the inclusion of the combined qualification, the main changes you will find within the updated frameworks will be changes to the GLH hours, ERR component options, and the embedding of the PLTS.

For further information on the new unit breakdown, Skills CFA assessment strategy and PLTS mapping of the qualifications please visit the Skills CFA website.  The new updated frameworks can now be found on the AFO website.


New Framework Implementation Dates and Funding

After some initial confusion surrounding the implementation dates for the new apprenticeship frameworks; we have been in close contact with the Skills Funding Agency regarding this matter.

On 26th September SFA issued the following message:

“Change to Apprenticeship framework implementation dates: Business Administration (Intermediate & Advanced - framework number 490), Management (Intermediate & Advanced - framework number 487) and Higher Apprenticeship in Business & Professional Administration (Higher - framework number 620).

We have identified that there was a gap in the availability for delivery of three Apprenticeship frameworks following recent changes to qualifications within the frameworks. The implementation date of the revised frameworks detailed above is being changed to 1 September 2014 so that provision is not affected.  Providers must still search the Learning Aim Reference Service (LARS) for the qualification level operational start date set by awarding organisations.

The changes will be available on LARS and data collection systems by 30 September 2014.”

Funding rates were attached to apprenticeship qualifications on 24th September 2014.  Due to the inclusion of the new diploma qualifications there have been changes to the funding rate. Please visit The Hub to search funding rates.


New Qualifications Training Events

Throughout June, July and August Skills CFA held a series of national workshop events with practitioners on the updates of Skills CFA’s new qualifications.  The workshops allowed an opportunity for practitioners to discuss and understand the new changes and challenges facing their apprentices and apprenticeship delivery in light of the implementation of new qualifications on 1st September 2014.  Attendees found it useful to discuss with others in the field their provisions for the new qualifications.  Collectively sharing ideas was useful for all to take back to the workplace and classrooms.

At Skills CFA we continue to receive calls asking for further events, more events are likely to be implemented towards the end of the year once an interim evaluation has been completed for the previous sessions.


Apprentice Graduation Ceremony for Advanced and Higher Apprentices

The graduation ceremony will be held on 19th November 2014 in Central Hall Westminster, which in itself is Central London's largest Conference & Events Centre and has just been shortlisted as a finalist for the 2014 M&IT Industry Awards 2014.

Skills CFA, in association with The Association of Colleges, the National Apprenticeship Service, The Association of Employment and Learning Providers and the Federation for Industry Skills and Standards will celebrate the success of advanced and higher apprenticeship achievements in business related skills.

The graduation also aims to raise the profile of the apprenticeship route in comparison to academic pathways. More than this, the ceremony will look to engage with unengaged employers and apprentices as well as celebrate with providers and employers currently engaged with apprentices.

Finally, the graduation ceremony will culminate in the announcement of our two awards, Advanced and Higher Apprentice of the Year and Apprentice Employer of the Year Awards.

For more information visit:


Recruitment Apprenticeships

This September 29th, Skills CFA will be turning the spotlight onto recruitment apprenticeships, with a weeklong virtual campaign promoting the programmes to employers and learners.

From July 2014, aspiring recruitment professionals were able to take the new Level 2 Intermediate Recruitment Resourcing Apprenticeship. This new apprenticeship, offers a clear progression pathway onto the already popular Level 3 Advanced Apprenticeship in Recruitment and the Level 4 Higher Apprenticeship in Recruitment.

The aim of the campaign is to showcase recruitment apprenticeships and increase employer and learner engagement with them.  We are encouraging professional bodies, employers and training organisations in the Recruitment sector to help promote recruitment apprenticeships to other businesses and to young people.

The virtual campaign to raise awareness about recruitment apprenticeships will be taking place the week commencing 29th September.  We invite you to join the following organisations backing the campaign:

  • Association of Employment and Learning Providers - AELP
  • Capital International Staffing Ltd
  • Edo Ltd
  • Greater London Authority - GLA 
  • Institute of Recruiters - IOR
  • learndirect
  • My Apprenticeship+
  • National Apprenticeship Service - NAS
  • Outsource Training
  • Recruitment Employment Confederation - REC
  • Skillsfirst Awards

To get involved please follow us on Twitter or LinkedIn and use #recruitmentapprenticeships


Articles we’ve been tweeting about!

Varsity Blues: Time for apprenticeships to graduate?  - Million Jobs report detailing informative comparisons between apprentices and graduates on earnings, employment, productivity and taxpayers returns.  Full of interesting case studies too!

Number of NEETs at lowest level since 1994 – This Apprentice Eye report spreads the good news according to the latest National Audit Office report.

Apprenticeships: How to earn £32k while studying for a degree – The Telegraph article about how the best companies are using apprenticeships to completely change their company culture.

Are apprenticeships overlooked by careers Advisors? – This Apprentice Eye article discusses careers advice being aimed at adults rather than young people, with apprenticeships often being overlooked.



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