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New degree apprenticeship backed by big UK employers

Launch of new Government-backed Degree Apprenticeship will tackle the “ineffective managers draining British productivity.”


The UK’s first Degree Apprenticeship has been launched with Barclays, Nestlé and Serco among the first to offer the training. Within weeks, Virgin Media, the Civil Service and many other employers will be taking on new management apprentices. The launch of the apprenticeship addresses a blind-spot in UK business education, with 71% of UK organisations admitting they fail to effectively train first time managers.

The new Chartered Manager Degree Apprenticeship has been developed by a group of 40 employers and universities, led by Serco and supported by the Chartered Management Institute (CMI). The scheme was given the green light in July by the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills. This course is among the first of the Degree Apprenticeships offered under the Government’s Trailblazer programme, which was announced in March by Prime Minister David Cameron.

The Degree Apprenticeship is aimed at helping meet the requirements of a growing UK economy needing more than one million new managers by 2020. Under the scheme, managers who complete the apprenticeship will earn a degree in management and business and become a Chartered Manager.

Skills Minister Nick Boles said:

““By uniting the very best of higher education with work-based learning, we are transforming the routes into top management jobs. Great businesses are run by great managers and I am confident many of tomorrow’s business leaders will learn their trade through the Chartered Manager Degree Apprenticeship.”

Nine higher education institutions*, including Sheffield Hallam and Anglia Ruskin, are among the first to offer the Degree Apprenticeship to employers. It is expected that many more universities will offer the course in the next academic year.

The four-year courses bring together a world-class business education, work-based learning and professional development through to Chartered Manager status, tailored to the needs of employers and employees. The Chartered Manager Degree Apprenticeship will provide work-based learning for both non-graduate existing managers as well as school leavers.

Apprentices will follow a programme developed by employers, CMI and the Chartered Association of Business Schools, ensuring they earn degrees from renowned universities and business schools. Apprentices become members of CMI and will attain Chartered Manager status by the end of their apprenticeship. Chartered Manager is the highest accreditation that can be achieved in the management profession**.

Ann Francke, Chief Executive of the Chartered Management Institute, commented:

“People are being asked to lead without training or support, with ineffective managers draining British productivity. Today’s launch finally addresses the core issue that a third of managers are rated as ineffective by their teams, a key cause for the UK’s poor performance in productivity. The new Chartered Manager Degree Apprenticeship ties together the training offered by educators and employers, with apprentices offered the threefold guarantee of a quality degree, on-the-job experience and a professional pathway for future development.”

Employers from across the country are being urged to get involved in Degree Apprenticeships so that many thousands of apprentices can complete the new apprenticeships by the end of the decade, helping meet the requirements of a growing UK economy needing more than one million new managers by 2020.