Do you have buy-in from your senior management team?
A successful and sustainable apprenticeship programme needs to be championed by the senior management team of the service. It is critical to the future travel of a service, and how it responds to local needs and meets the objectives of the IRMP.
Senior leaders need to:
- Analyse current and future staffing skill needs to respond to IRMP
- Prioritise training needs to meet IRMP – for example, ask whether local needs are to be met with firefighters or community safety advisers, or a combination of both
- Assess past performance in terms of delivery of training, including retention rates, costs and completion of courses
- Assess infrastructure to meet training needs, including existing staff, equipment, premises, and facilities
- Assess whether systems are in place to administer learning and delivery, including the management of training contracts, quality assurance of training provision and support to staff
- Understand that staff support includes attracting internal and external apprentice candidates, sign posting courses, providing pastoral and other support during training and ensuring training needs are met
- Understand gaps in training provision and ability which can be filled by professional training providers
- Analyse whether roles are clearly established and linked to apprenticeships for promotion
- Link apprenticeships to succession planning, including career pathways