Issue - decisions

Social Work Degree Apprentices

16/11/2023 - Social Work Degree Apprentices





That the Executive approved the Council’s Social Worker Apprenticeship Degree which will be procured through the Crown Commercial Services (CCS)Apprenticeship Training Dynamic Marketplace DPS which is compliant with the Public Procurement Regulations 2015 (as amended).



Reasons for Recommendation:

·        The proposal fully incorporates the Council’s “Grow our Own” strategy and starts to use Apprenticeships in a more strategic means for workforce development, acting to retain and support staff to develop their careers.

·        Securing social worker apprenticeship training will enable us to support opportunities for our care leavers and the recent key policies that have been agreed in this area.

·        In meeting future workforce needs via Apprenticeships programmes we are increasing utilisation of the Apprenticeship Levy Account, helping to safeguarding against potential expiry of funds and ensuring maximisation of spend on programmes that will have return on investment and positive impact for the Council.

·        Social workers are part of a regulated service, and we must therefore plan to ensure we have resilience and availability of staff to provide a compliant service. 

·        It is also recommended that the Crown Commercial Services Apprenticeship Dynamic Purchasing System Apprenticeship route is utilised to run a competitive tendering process to ensure providers bidding have completed base-line pre-checks for quality and achievement rates.  Further questions and requirements specified within the documentation ensure providers bidding can meet specific requirements as set by the organisations enabling tailoring of the apprenticeship programme.


Alternative Options Considered: Consideration was given to releasing the opportunity via Lots.  This would have allowed each organisation to set their own questions and criteria however this would not give us the buying power required to be able to stipulate the need for Practice Educators to be supplied, trained or funding towards salaries provided and created a greater risk that each organisation would be working with a different training provider.  This could create issues related to work experience weeks not co-aligning as required to allow the rotation between organisations as currently planned and utilised in previous models which proved beneficial. Based upon this the Lead Social Workers decided they would like to proceed as outlined above.