We are about to see a profound change in the way organisations attract and develop people. The apprenticeship system is the catalyst for that change.
The apprenticeship levy, which comes into force in April 2017, has grabbed the headlines. But there was an equally important development last year: the higher-level degree apprenticeship.
The new degree apprenticeship programmes offer an alternative to traditional degree courses. While the latter typically leave students with thousands of pounds of debt, and without relevant work experience, degree apprenticeships allow people to gain a degree without the debt, graduate with four years’ work experience and get paid throughout.
For employers, degree apprenticeships offer new means of developing a pipeline of qualified and experienced young talent – people who can make a valuable contribution from day one of their degree programme. You can also use degree apprenticeships to improve productivity and increase retention by using them to train your existing members of staff.
It’s easy to imagine a degree apprenticeship at a top employer becoming as sought after as a place at a top university. Conversely, employers who don’t offer them may find themselves frozen out of the contest for the best candidates.
If your organisation is looking to develop a degree apprenticeship programme, don’t be tempted to re-badge a degree course from a higher education institute. The best apprenticeships offer a carefully honed blend of study and work-based learning. Here are five key things to consider as you develop your programme: