After a recent review of vocational education and training it was decided that the design of many apprenticeships was not fit for purpose and things needed to change. Groups of employers (known as trailblazers) from different industries were asked to get together and agree new ways to train up their young workforce.

To date only 20 of these new apprenticeship standards have been given the green light but there are many more in the pipeline. To give an idea of the vast range of occupations that will eventually be covered I have listed below a random selection.

  • animal care & welfare officer
  • arborist
  • artisan baker
  • aviation grounds specialist
  • biomass installations engineer
  • children, young people and families worker
  • civil engineering technician
  • community health & sport activator
  • dental hygienist
  • ductwork installer
  • gas service engineer
  • journalist
  • maritime pipeworker
  • master builder (with a major in bricklaying)
  • ceramics modeller
  • mortgage advisor
  • recruitment resourcer
  • structural steel erector

You get the idea. But of course its important to realise that just because a new apprenticeship has been devised this does not necessarily mean that it will be easy for a school leaver to gain a place. There are a few reasons to tread carefully:

  1. apprenticeships are not government schemes to help youngsters into work. They are real jobs and the availability of jobs for school leavers depends on whether or not that particular sector of the economy is growing or shrinking; and
  2. some of these new training standards will be for very specialised jobs which are not evenly spread around the country but instead are located in towns or cities where a particular company decided to establish a factory, head office or whatever; and
  3. in some cases the jobs in question will be high prestige or well paid ones perhaps working for a famous, household name type of employer and such jobs inevitably attract lots of applications thus reducing the chances of all but the most attractive candidates – as perceived by the employer.

Those points apply just as much to the existing (now old fashioned!) apprenticeship “frameworks” that until recently the government were telling us are an absolutely fabulous offering to young people. In that sense nothing has really changed very much! That being said, the table below shows those new standards that have been approved for use along with the QCF level that applies to them.


Sector and Job Title Level
Business & Finance
Actuarial Technician 4
Aerospace Manufacturing Fitter 3
Mechatronics Maintenance Technician 3
Control /Technical Support Engineer 6
Electrical /Electronic Technical Support Engineer 6
Manufacturing Engineer 6
Product Design and Development Engineer 6
Product Design and Development Technician 3
Dental Health
Dental Technician 5
Dental Laboratory Assistant 3
Dental Practice Manager 4
Digital Industries
Network Engineer 4
Software Developer 4
Digital & Technology Solutions Professional – degree apprenticeship 6
Energy and Utilities
Power Network Craftsperson 3
Financial Services
Relationship Manager (Banking) 6
Financial Services Administrator 3
Food and Drink
Food and Drink Maintenance Engineer 3
Golf Greenkeeping (horticulture)
Greenkeeper 2
Life and Industrial Sciences
Laboratory Technician 3


Further reading:
Apprenticeships Explained