What is the point of employer engagement within apprenticeships?

Apprenticeships are designed to ensure a learner has a combined practical and theoretical knowledge of their chosen profession, by focusing on workplace learning with at least 20% off the job training. Without employers, apprentices have nowhere to work and learn, which is why it’s essential to maintain a high level of employer engagement throughout their learner’s apprenticeship.

Creating a culture of employer engagement as a training provider ensures your learner remains on track for a timely completion and the assessor, employer and learner know exactly what they need to contribute to make this happen.

Employers are in charge of developing the new standards that shape the modern apprenticeship, with frameworks being thrown out, apprenticeships are now designed for the employer, by the employer. Their engagement from design through to completion is the new method of a completely digital learning journey, from start to end.

How can you improve yours?

Know what the expectations of your employer is

Making sure you’re on the same page from the start to the end of your strategic partnership with an employer can only improve delivery. Regular check-ins or reviews with the employer and the apprentice can ensure there are no missed deadlines and the apprentice is on the right track for end point assessment completion on time. With no surprises, employers can rest easy knowing the training provider and apprentice are working together to achieve a return on investment for the employer.

Make it easy for them to monitor their apprentice

Employers want to ensure a return on investment for their apprentice, which is why it’s important for them to know where their apprentice is at throughout their course. An online system that allows employers to export reports or see at a glance important data is an easy way to keep employer engagement high.

Streamline your process and technology systems

Imagine all the systems you use regularly in your own job, now imagine adding another system on top of that to learn and utilise for monitoring an apprentice, plus another to check their assessments, plus any others the training provider or college may assign you. Annoying right?

The best providers are those who only need to give their employers access to one system as their software talks to any other platforms they may use. Having a single-sign-on system boosts productivity and time efficiency, it’s a no-brainer, right?


Whether you’re doing this by phone, email, face-to-face or via an online meeting room, keeping communication open and regular is a must. The transparency of popping into a meeting room to ensure the employer and apprentice are ok or if they need help is an easy way to ensure everything is running as smoothly as possible.

How are others doing it?

Dave Lee, Director of Apprenticeships at Heart of Worcestershire College uses Smart Assessor and Smart VLE to improve their employer engagement:

“We are trying to have more of a structured approach to using SA for everything now so this includes using it for recruitment and selection which we piloted for a council recruiting for Finance Apprentices. I created an aptitude assessment which was specific to the Finance Level 3 Standard and we had 19 applicants sit this, English and Maths and complete a basic interview after.

Following this, we were able to pull off data from SVLE to send to the council that showed all three results for each applicant which will now be used to select who will invite in for interviews. This has been a real success and is the process we will now be adopting for all applications, the beauty of this is that we can either invite applicants in or they can carry the activities out remotely.

We can also track an individual from recruitment all the way through the journey which the employer can do as well.”

If you would like to see how Smart Assessor can improve your employer engagement, why not book a short consultation with our Strategic Partnership Consultant, Kieran?

Click here to book an appointment.