I am new to this so please forgive any ignorance! I am after some advice, information and guidance if possible.
I work for an NHS Trust who are going to be rolling out the delivery of an apprenticeship programme in-house towards the end of next month (Level 3). It is an initial pilot and if successful we will look at 12 a cohort, twice annually.
I understand we need to submit ILR data and will be using the basic one from the ESFA as we received some ridiculous quotations for other providers! However I can see that we will still need some sort of tracking system in place to help track the progress of our learners.
Our pilot programme only has 6 apprentices, so my question here is: How do others do this when you only have a very small cohort? Can we do this as we would with our other non-apprenticeship certified programmes which is via an Excel tracker we previously devised.
I am feeling so nervous about this, but I suspect this is because this is unfamiliar territory for us and I don’t want to mess it up!
Also, if there are any small orgs who have just done this, I would love to know how you got on. Especially with your ILR submissions. Happy to share my details with anyone if needed.
StaceyJune 24, 2020 at 3:41 pm #448900
It might be worth you seeing if there is another NHS Trust that is new to it and looking at small cohorts too? Do the Trusts have anything like FEconnect where you can leave a message and see what response you get?
SueJune 24, 2020 at 4:12 pm #448912
With 24 starts a year you should be fine with the Learner Entry Tool, a spreadsheet and a pile of paper.
I usually advise providers to invest in a proper system once they don’t know all of their learners by name, but there are certainly advantages to having one from day one (and it is an investment).
Having said that, a proper system won’t stop someone making a dog’s dinner of it!
I’ll leave it to small providers to tell you what the speed bumps are.June 24, 2020 at 4:14 pm #448914
A big thank you! I feel slightly lighter on seeing your reply. We will definitely be looking at a proper system towards the end of the year. Something we will be enlisting the services of our I.T department to support us with. Some of the quotations I received were crazy and not something we are able to fund as an NHS Trust. That being said, once we are able to fully establish our apprenticeship programme and hopeful future ones it should be something that is much more within our reach financially.
StaceyJune 24, 2020 at 4:20 pm #448916
Thank you Sue!
I have spoken to others and they tend to make scary faces when I mention the ILR in general! We will definitely be looking at a potential partnership once we have evaluated our pilot. We do have a few in mind.
StaceyJune 24, 2020 at 4:24 pm #448918
I mentioned it Stacey because I do know of an NHS Trust using the Learner Entry Tool, so they are out there! I’ve used it myself for the last four years and I still learn stuff here. No one thinks any question is a silly one, and it you are a newbie there is a lot to learn. Steve is particularly helpful 🙂
The Learner Entry Tool is more than adequate for your needs right now – the hard thing is choosing your next piece of software !
Best of luck Stacey.
SueJune 24, 2020 at 4:36 pm #448922
This definitely gives me confidence! I just need to find out who does as it all seems to be very much smoke and mirrors when trying to find out who (I have tried in the past but not got far!) Hopefully someone on here will be able to confirm it. It is also great knowing you have used it for 4 years. This provides me with some confidence. Was there any other guidance you found useful towards the set up and data entry when you captured your first apprentices?
StaceyJune 24, 2020 at 5:05 pm #448926
Stacey, if you don’t mind sharing your email address, I’ll drop you an email with some info.
SueJune 25, 2020 at 10:33 am #449014June 25, 2020 at 10:38 am #449018
Thanks Stacey, just sending you something now.
SueJune 25, 2020 at 11:00 am #449022
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