ncfe logo 200x200NCFE has welcomed the government’s decision to approve another of the apprenticeship standards submitted by the Supply Chain and Logistics Trailblazer group, for which NCFE is the chosen awarding organisation partner.

The Supply Chain Specialist Large Goods Vehicle Driver (LGV) Level 2 Trailblazer apprenticeship standard has been granted approval as part of the government’s plans to increase the number of quality trailblazer apprenticeships across the country. This is in line with the government’s pledge to support 3 million apprenticeships by 2020 – placing ownership of the skills and knowledge required to perform key roles within industry firmly in the hands of the employers.

In order to drive up the quality of apprenticeships, Trailblazer employer groups have developed standards which outline the skills apprentices in these roles are expected to have to meet the needs of employers.

NCFE was selected as the awarding organisation to shape and support apprenticeship development for the Supply Chain and Logistics Trailblazer group last year and, as the group’s chosen partner, the organisation has been using its experience and expertise to develop high quality standards for apprenticeships in the sector.

In August last year, the group, which includes representatives from the Ministry of Defence, trade association The British Association of Removers (BAR), Nagel Langdons, other employers such as DHL, John Lewis and Sainsbury’s in addition to NCFE, submitted three standards to the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS). One of these – the Supply Chain Operator Level 2 Trailblazer Apprenticeship Standard – was approved, but NCFE and the other members of the group expressed disappointment at the government’s decision not to approve the LGV driver standard at that time.

Now approved, this apprenticeship standard will have a significant impact on the freight and logistics sector, in which there has long been a skills shortage. With the support of NCFE, the Supply Chain Trailblazer group will now work with training providers to develop assessment plans for the approved standard, and is also preparing to submit the third of the Level 2 standards it has developed – Warehouse Operative – before starting development of Level 3 and 4 standards.

David Grailey, Chief Executive of NCFE, said: “Along with all the representatives in the group, we are pleased that the government has recognised the need to provide quality training routes for LGV drivers and therefore approved this standard. This means that some of the many vacancies can now start to be filled, and that young people – with whom the industry wants to engage – will be able to access the training they need to apply for these roles.

“We’re proud to have been involved with the work of the Supply Chain Trailblazer group so far, and we look forward to continuing to help shape the future of apprenticeships, ensuring programmes are tailored to industry needs and offer real opportunities to learners.”

Colin Snape, HR Manager at Nagel Langdons and chair of the Supply Chain Trailblazer group, commented: “The approval of the LGV driver standard is a significant win – we expect that there will be high demand and this will have a positive impact on the sector as we intend to have licence acquisition included for the first time. There has been a shortage of LGV drivers for a long time, and this apprenticeship will support businesses by getting trained, high quality drivers into employment.”

Any employers or training providers interested in being involved in the next stages of developments are invited to contact the Supply Chain Trailblazer group via the enquiry form at www.supplychainskills.org. Providers can also contact Emma Jewitt at NCFE on 0191 2398058 or emmajewitt@ncfe.org.uk for more information, or visit www.ncfe.org.uk/apprenticeships to find out about the high quality apprenticeships that NCFE offers.

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