Finding and choosing the right training provider can be essential to the success of your apprenticeship to make sure both your apprentice and your business reach your combined future potential.

In the UK, you have to hire an external training provider for apprenticeships. You can also search for training providers in your area.

What is a Training Provider?

Training providers do much more than just train your apprentice on a set curriculum, they:

  1. Make sure the apprenticeship is the exact one that your business needs
  2. Tailor the training to make sure the apprentice is getting the necessary skills for your business
  3. Create an appropriate pace of learning for your apprentice
  4. Remain in contact with you to negotiate your business’s needs

Whether you are a small or large company, and whether you are starting an apprenticeship for a 16-year-old or an adult, deliberating the complexity of your needs against hundreds of different training providers, the choice is far from easy.

When choosing an apprenticeship training provider, there are a few key factors to consider. The first is accreditation. All apprenticeship training providers in the UK must be accredited by the government in order to deliver apprenticeship programmes.

You can check whether a provider is accredited by searching the Register of Apprenticeship Training Providers on the government website.

Another important factor to consider is the quality of training. apprenticeship training providers must meet rigorous standards in order to be accredited, so you can be sure that any provider you choose will deliver high-quality training. However, it is still worth doing your own research to make sure that the provider you choose has a good reputation.

You can read reviews of apprenticeship training providers on the government website.

Finally, you need to consider the cost of training. apprenticeship training programmes are funded by the government, so there is no upfront cost for businesses. However, businesses may be required to contribute to the cost of additional resources or support that apprentices need in order to complete their programme.

We have drawn up 5 critical considerations you should make to help you choose the right training provider for your apprenticeship:

  • Company Size and Region

If your business works across numerous different regions, it might be appropriate to find a large training provider that can meet your needs in more than one place. On the other hand, if you are a localised business, it might be more appropriate to choose a local provider who can concentrate on your needs in the area.

  • Quality Teaching

A good technique for finding out if a training provider will provide quality teaching is checking if they have a Curriculum Team, that deals with adapting the teaching to fit your needs. Checking their Ofsted rating is also essential.

  • Accountability

You want your training provider to have a good set of reporting tools that will allow you to ensure the training is meeting the needs of your apprentice and your business.

  • Reputation

The training provider should be proactive at engaging in the wider sector, so it should be easy to find evidence of campaigns, events or reviews by customers that show a good understanding of your business needs. An easier way of checking a training provider’s reputation is seeing if they have gained any awards or accreditations for their work with apprentices. Check the FE Choices employer satisfaction survey, detailing employers’ experiences of their training.

  • Culture

You will be working alongside the training provider, so think like you’re hiring another member of your team. They must align with your company culture and values as they will be imprinting them onto your apprentice, and association with them will have an impact on your company image.

The Next Steps

Once you have found a few potential apprenticeship training providers, it is time to get in touch and arrange a meeting. This is your opportunity to ask questions about the provider’s accreditation, quality of training, and experience delivering apprenticeship programmes. It is also an opportunity to discuss your specific needs and requirements and find out what support the provider can offer you.

Once you have made your decision, the next step is to sign a contract with the provider. This contract will outline the terms of your agreement, including the cost of training and any additional resources or support that you will need to provide.

The apprenticeship training provider you choose will play a crucial role in the success of your apprenticeship programme. Taking the time to find the right provider for your needs will ensure that your apprentices receive the high-quality training they need to succeed in their careers. For more information, take a look at our additional resources for employers. If you have any further questions, don’t hesitate to contact us directly.