The SIP will develop a science industry sector standards plan including Apprenticeship Standards (Trailblazers), based on the sector occupations.
Employer members from the Science Industry Partnership (SIP) are the Trailblazers of apprenticeship reform. They have developed new standards and specified that the end point assessment that confirms the apprentices competence should be assessed by an independent assessment body (SIAS).
The SIP Trailblazer group has delivered and received ministerial approval for four apprenticeship standards and their associated assessment plans:
- Laboratory Technician
- Science Manufacturing Technician
- Science Industry Maintenance Technician
- Laboratory Scientist
SIP Membership provides you with the opportunity to make sure that Apprenticeship Standards for the sector continue to meet the needs of your business so that apprentices coming into your organisation can add value and make a contribution quickly because their training is relevant.
Craig Hargreaves, Senior Trainer Maintenance Services at SABIC, the North East-based chemicals manufacturer and previous Chair of the SIP Trailblazer Group outlines the important of new standard development,“just as a business carries out regular reviews and adapts to industry and market needs, so the Trailblazers has enabled us in the Industrial and Life Sciences sector to assess what skills and training we now need as an industry to ensure we maintain our competitive advantage in the global market. Trailblazers has also allowed the science sector to address an identified skills gap.”
“Currently the industry is finding it more difficult to attract younger employees. There are a number of factors for this, particularly in the North East, where there is competition from other industries in the process industries’ supply chain, such as the offshore oil and gas sector which has drawn on the limited talent pool.”
“The redesign of apprenticeships has also allowed the industry to develop a set of expected behaviours needed for the highly regulated environment in which we operate. It is important now for us to have individuals who are happy working within a team, communicate at all levels, see safety as a priority and have the skills with which to deliver effective results.”
On completing a Trailblazers standard, the apprentice can also gain a recognised UK professional qualification at RSci Tech or Eng Tech level as the group has been working with recognised industry bodies such as IMechE, Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC), IChemE and the Science and Engineering Councils.
Industry and Occupational Standards
Membership also provides the ability to have say through setting the industry Gold Standards and Occupational Standards upon which the vocational qualifications available at colleges are based.
Find out more about Apprenticeship Reform here