How your training provider will carry the load of an apprenticeship

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In part three of “7 steps to start an apprenticeship”, we look at how to choose the right training provider.

Having sought AAT’s advice, finding a training provider is your next move. A training provider is there to help you navigate the process of designing, setting up and running your apprenticeship.

With the right training provider on board, things will really start to come together.

“Training providers are brilliant they have so much knowledge and are always there to help you navigate through the processes. It’s a really straightforward process once you know what programme and what apprenticeship it is you want to set up,” says Helen Bloodworth, Senior Manager Professional Qualifications, RSM.

In the early stages, they will provide invaluable advice for example, in defining your job. Your apprenticeship role can’t be just for to have someone make coffee, it must have scope for learning and development in order to qualify for funding. Using their experience, the training provider will help you tweak your job so it contains the right elements to fit with the apprenticeship standard.

Off the job training

‘Off the job’ training is a critical part of an apprenticeship. It doesn’t automatically mean ‘off company premises’, but it does require that apprentices spend 20% of their time away from work duties focussing on acquiring the skills and knowledge for their qualifications.

This can all be managed by the training provider. A good training provider will “hold the employer’s hand” throughout the apprenticeship process, from helping you place the initial advertisement through to coaching your apprentice in their end-point assessment (final exam).

Training providers can also do much of the ‘heavy lifting’ (functions such as HR and handling the paperwork) that your team might not have time /del/to deal with.

Aside from training, a quality training provider can tailor the apprenticeship training towards the needs of your business. If a training provider teaches apprentices bookkeeping at the start of their course, but you feel costing is more relevant to your firm, they may be able to accommodate these requests for recruitment help: writing and listing the job spec/advert; help with interviewing candidates handling administration and paperwork

The questions you should ask a training provider

  • What qualifications do you offer?
  • Are you AAT accredited?
  • What are your fees?
  • What is the course duration? When are the course enrolment and end dates?
  • How do you deliver their apprenticeship? In the college, at your workplace, remote learning or a
  • blend?
  • What are the class sizes?
  • How regularly will update me on the apprentice’s progress?
  • Are all optional papers offered at AAT Level 4 (some training providers are not able to do this)?
  • What are your success rates?
  • Also, find out which staff member at the provider will be working with your apprentice.

Free guide – 7 steps to start an apprenticeship

AAT’s free guide to launching an apprenticeship in seven easy steps will walk you through the process, from job description to funding.


AAT Comment offers news and opinion on the world of business and finance from the Association of Accounting Technicians.

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