About the Technician Apprenticeship Consortium

The Technician Apprenticeship Consortium is a group of mainly engineering consultancy practices that have come together to develop and deliver Advanced Technician Apprenticeships in relevant engineering disciplines.  

In March 2010, Mott MacDonald was instrumental in establishing a consortium of 6 of the largest UK engineering consultancy practices to plan and deliver an Advanced Technician Apprenticeship in Civil Engineering.  Other founding members were Arup, Capita, Halcrow, Hyder and WSP. The impetus was a requirement of the TfL Engineering and Project Management Framework that companies had to accept the GLA Strategic Labour Needs and Training commitment which included a target for recruiting apprentices. 

 

Background and Purpose

The purpose of the Technician Apprenticeship Consortium is to;
  • Bring together engineering consultancy firms to enable them to meet their business needs through the recruitment and training of technician apprentices
  • Ensure that there is a valued work based route to professional status for aspiring engineers including those who are currently under-represented within the sector such as females, ethnic minorities, the disabled and those from disadvantaged backgrounds.
  • Increase the numbers of young people taking up this route and the number of companies appreciating the benefits it brings and so committing to providing technician apprenticeship places
  • Broaden the availability across a range of engineering disciplines through using the common base of the Engineering Council UK-SPEC to compile a suite of linked qualifications working with sector skills councils, professional institutions and awarding bodies.  
Over a three year period the consortium has grown and flourished.  Highlights include;

  • The employer led consortium approach replicated at several locations across the UK.  The original group of companies recruited 8 apprentices in September 2010, 40 apprentices started courses across the English regions in September 2011 with a further 140 starting in September 2012.  Estimates for September 2013 are in excess of 240 including starts in Wales and Scotland.  There were a large number of applications for the available posts requiring a minimum of 5 GCSEs Grades A-C including Maths (grade B), English and a Science subject or the equivalent in Scotland.
  • Ten colleges who are members of a network. Most are already delivering the apprenticeship programme with the rest starting in September 2013.  A Service Level Agreement in place which sets out the roles and responsibilities of the colleges, companies and professional institutions.
  • The Construction Youth Trust working with the consortium and funded by the National Apprenticeship Service, Transport for London, the Royal Academy of Engineering and The Gatsby Charitable Foundation successfully recruited and supported a number of young people from non-traditional backgrounds for apprenticeship positions in London through its Budding Brunels schools engagement programme. 
  • In December 2010, the consortium won the Mayor of London’s Responsible Procurement Skills and Employment Award in recognition of the innovative and employer led nature of the programme and in December 2011, the consortium won the Training Journal Apprenticeship Programme of the Year Award against some stiff competition from across all business sectors.
  • In May 2012, the consortium received a two year funding grant from the Gatsby Charity Foundation to assist in the work needed to evolve the consortium into a more formal entity.  This was necessary if the consortium was to continue to thrive and meet its objectives.  It was agreed that the best way to accomplish this was through working with a host organisation such as ACE which would enable it to maintain its employer led approach.

How it works

Currently the consortium operates at two levels.  

A National Group

which is responsible for; 
  • setting policy and objectives 
  • setting direction 
  • setting priorities 
  • approving an annual business plan
  • approving changes in governance 
To join the National Group a company agrees to sign a Membership Charter and pay an annual subscription.The consortium manages its day to day affairs through a Management Group which meets on a quarterly basis to; 
  • Action and monitor against the agreed annual business plan
  • Manage financial income and expenditure
  • Provide recommendations for action to Company Members 

 

 

Regional Groups 
These are linked to colleges (see Section 4 below) delivering the apprenticeship frameworks. The role of the Regional Groups is to; 

  • Monitor and support the college in the delivery of the apprenticeships
  • Influence college curriculum delivery and assessment model.
  • Collaborate in the recruitment of talented young people.
  • Share good practice and resolve issues that may arise.
To join at either national or regional level a company must have committed to the recruitment of at least one technician apprentice. The consortium offers benefits to companies of any size from the very small through to large global businesses. Please click here for details on the governance of the consortium, and here for the membership charter

 

Current members

National Group


 

 

                                                                                                     

      
            

 

         

 

 


 
   
             

Regional Groups

Strong regional groups have been established in London, Leeds, Solihull and Southampton.  Plans are in place to develop similar groups at other colleges around the UK.  Contact details for each of the colleges can be found in the Regional Contact List