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Overview of apprenticeship

This occupation is found in all organisations where goods and/or services need to be sourced and purchased in line with national or international procurement laws, or internal governance processes. This occupation is found in the following sectors;

  • public sector such as the NHS, the Emergencies Services, Local Authorities, Central Government and the Education Sector.
  •  private sector such as Finance, Construction, Energy, Utilities, Mining, Facilities, Automotive, Manufacturing, Engineering, Pharmaceuticals, Fashion, Food, Hotels, Hospitality, Entertainment and IT.
  • Third Sector including charities and other not for profit organisations.

The broad purpose of the occupation is the process of procurement or buying low value goods and services. Procurement and supply assistants are vital for the smooth functioning of the procurement and supply department in any organisation. They are often responsible for ensuring data is correctly administered and maintained in accordance with legislation of the organisation's own procedures. They will use their knowledge of procurement regulations/policies to support the wider procurement team in tasks such as quotation and/or tender response evaluation, supplier database maintenance, purchase order review and conversion, and stakeholder liaison. The individual will also often have purchasing requests and low risk contracts for which they will develop requests, quotes, or obtain prices and delivery. They will provide support in procurement to enable supplier selection, management and supplier closure and undertake a role in the management of supply delivery and quality assurance.
In their daily work, an employee in this occupation interacts with their procurement teams as well as colleagues from other internal departments such as operational functions, finance, legal, IT, sales and marketing. This role also includes interaction with external stakeholders such as suppliers. This role may involve off site and supplier visits, however it will be mainly office based.

An employee in this occupation will be responsible for:

  •  Contributing to the sourcing of new suppliers using market research for on-going tenders on behalf of the wider team.
  • Challenging the organisational need for the purchase especially where Corporate Social Responsibility or value for money considerations suggest the procurement can be better channeled through existing assets or an existing contract.
  • Support and contribution to higher value activities such as construction projects and capital expenditure
  • Assisting with the monitoring of the commercial benefits and status of procurement projects, for example, spend and trend analysis, cost-benefit analysis saving profile - forecast and actual; and may utilise that information to support procurement decisions, assist with supplier reviews or in developing reports for other parties, such as the Category Manager or Head of Procurement.
  • Supporting a wide range of procurement processes including the conduct of tenders, with the use of e-tendering tools (e.g. managing supplier correspondence).
  • Working with management to develop procurement documents (e.g. ITT templates and T&C's).
  • Basic understanding of regulations, internal policies and procedures, to educate the wider business areas (helpdesk support) and adopt commercial best practice.
  • Supporting development of consistent procurement processes and procedures.
  • Having strong customer focus, commercial acumen and a pro-active approach striving to meet the demands of customers in a timely manner.
  • Supporting supplier negotiation and help to ensure value for money deals are obtained.
  • Collating relevant management information to report to the wider procurement team and in preparation for internal/external audits.
  • Working with internal and external clients to facilitate a wide range of procurement processes.
  • Ability to set up, facilitate and administer e-tendering and e-evaluation systems, including management of supplier correspondence.
  • Ensuring all procurement systems and databases are managed, maintained and information cleansed for accurate reporting.
  • Adhering to corporate operating procedures – (if in public sector governing public procurement, including compliance with the Public Contracts Regulation).
  • Being responsive to customer enquiries and support contract and supplier management activity across a range of commercial areas.
  • Building excellent working relationships with peers, colleagues, customers, suppliers and other external stakeholders.
  • Providing prompt procurement system advice to buyers, across the business, to enable compliance and best practice.
  • Providing timely returns and accurate statistical data as required ensuring that Commercial data are recorded.

Delivery Plan and Assessment

All Apprentices must spend 20% of their time on programme completing Off-The-Job training, this includes independent study, internal training, and any shadow shifts. Apprentices will be supported by 1:1 meetings in the workplace by their dedicated Programme Tutor. Additional learning resources and information will be made available online to ensure a fully blended learning experience. Apprentices may be required to attend monthly sessions at a WSC location, or in their workplace.

Learners will be required to complete an End Point Assessment at the end of their learning.

Where will this course take me?

As well as ensuring full competence as a Procurement and Supply Assistant, this apprenticeship provides a potential progression into a Level 4 Apprenticeship in Commercial Procurement and Supply.

Down to business, what can I do and what can I earn?

The minimum wage for apprentices is £4.30 per hour. However, the average wage for apprentices with WSC is £5.63 per hour.  Your wage is decided by your employer and most will look to reward excellent progress and completion of your apprenticeship.

Entry requirements

Whilst any entry requirements will be a matter for individual employers, typically an apprentice might be expected to have already achieved 5 GCSEs including Maths and English, Grade C or above or 4/5 (new grading). Some employers will accept other relevant qualifications and experience, including a relevant Level 2 qualification.

Apprentices without English and Maths at Level 2 must achieve these prior to taking their End Point Assessment.

Qualifications

On completion of the apprenticeship, you will have achieved:

  • Procurement and Supply Assistant Level 3 Standard.
  • Procurement and Supply Operations Advanced Certificate Level 3.
  • Skills for Success - This module is designed by West Suffolk College to ensure you have all the personal skills and behaviours to succeed in the workplace.
  • Any required Functional Skills in English or Maths.

How is this funded?

Learners

Apprentices are not required to contribute financially towards Apprenticeship training.

Employers

If you are an employer with an annual wage bill of £3 million or more, you will pay into an apprenticeship levy. This levy is then used to pay for the training element of the apprenticeship course.  The total figure for the Apprenticeship is negotiated before enrolment and once confirmed will be taken in monthly payments from your account directly to us or paid to us via invoice should additional fees be required.

If you are an employer with an annual wage bill of under £3 million, the Government will fund 95% of the training fee meaning you will be required to contribute 5%.  You may be required to contribute additional fees which we will invoice the company for.  The additional fees will be made known and negotiated prior to the Apprentice enrolment.

There are additional incentives available if you are a small employer (under 50) and if you train/recruit a 16-18 year old or 19-24 year old with an Education Health and Care Plan.

Contact us on 01284 716235 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for further details of costs and how Apprenticeships are funded.

Try out our apprenticeship levy calculator here

I'm interested. What should I do now?

You apply for an Apprenticeship in the same way you would apply for a job: find an apprenticeship vacancy, send in your CV or complete an application. We can help you with applications and give you interview advice. Please view the following page on our website to see our latest Apprenticeship vacancies.

Apprenticeship Vacancies: https://www.wsc.ac.uk/find-a-course/apprenticeships/vacancies

Alternatively, you can look on the GOV.UK website to see what other Apprenticeships vacancies may be available: https://www.findapprenticeship.service.gov.uk/apprenticeshipsearch

Employers - Please contact us to speak with a member of the Apprenticeship Team for more information and to organise a face to face visit.

Days & times

Please contact us for dates and further information


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