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Ten ways your apprenticeship management system should support the learner journey

professionals mapping the apprenticeship learner journey

Often with technology, it’s the seemingly small things that can make a huge difference. We regularly talk about the configurability that makes Aptem the system of choice for so many. But what does that really mean? Here are ten common scenarios where a little flexibility can go a long way to supporting the apprenticeship learner journey. 

Scenario 1: A learner has a family emergency and needs to go on a Break in Learning (BIL). 
  • The challenge: These things happen all the time, and yet for some providers, as soon as this kind of news comes in, you know there is a long list of actions for your team to take; and a high risk of human error along the way. You may need to go into their Learning Plan and manually freeze it, before going to the ILR to update the BIL and sending a message to the learner and tutor to confirm the break. None of it syncs and there is no automation to avoid having to make changes in multiple places.  
  • How it works in Aptem: Due to sophisticated, but easy-to-use process automation, you only need to raise a single tracker task in Aptem to cover all these elements in one swift process. A simple task that removes the time-consuming and error-prone process of manual updating in multiple places. 
Scenario 2: A learner is progressing well and lands a new job with a new employer.
  • The challenge: It may be wonderful news for the apprentice to secure a new role before they have even completed their apprenticeship, but as the provider, you will want to ensure you keep them engaged with their programme and that all administrative fallout is handled appropriately. You will need to think about ESFA and Ofsted reporting, as well as evidencing progress and the impact of your teaching.
  • How it works in Aptem: This is where automation tracker functionality comes in super useful. In this instance, you would simply raise a ‘withdrawal from learning’ tracker and complete a review that incorporates a survey recording the learner’s destination. The system would take care of the portfolio, messaging and ILR aspects, ensuring you capture all the data you need. 
Scenario 3: You suggest improvements for a more learner-centric onboarding process, but are mindful of the headache any process change could cause for your team.
  • The challenge: Having spent some time analysing your data, you realise that a few tweaks to the onboarding process could make a big difference to how learners and employers engage in those early days. For example, you may want to adjust the process so that learners are assessed for programme suitability earlier in the onboarding journey, and make sure the whole experience feels more personal. You may feel that you are restricted by what can be changed in your system and how long those updates will take, and resist making the change.
  • How it works in Aptem: The onboarding wizard is yours to configure in a way that works for your organisation – and it can be adapted to reflect changes in your process. You can edit the steps and features, terminology, imagery, and set up the information and guidance as you see fit. The result is a smooth, informative onboarding experience with capacity to flex in line with your continuous improvement efforts. 
Scenario 4: You’re struggling to get some employers to join review meetings.
  • The challenge: The ESFA and Ofsted are pushing for increased employer engagement in order to drive higher achievement rates. Yet time-poor line managers are all too often disengaged with the whole process. They may see it as a box-ticking exercise for which they simply don’t have time. In truth, by the time you go through all the compliance elements, there is little time for meaningful discussion.
  • How it works in Aptem: The Aptem product development team has invested heavily in review functionality. Up to 90 days prior to the review, you can invite the learner and employer to pre-complete a series of bespoke questions that will inform meaningful discussion on the day. It’s no longer about going through the motions; rather it becomes a genuinely useful check-in point for all parties.
Scenario 5: Your recent Ofsted went reasonably well, but there was some poor, and unexpected, feedback from learners and employers.
  • The challenge: As you conduct your internal Ofsted debrief, you may get into a discussion about whether or not you can build more awareness of learner and employer perception of quality. You want to find a way to consistently and continuously seek feedback but want your delivery system to do the heavy lifting.
  • How it works in Aptem: Flexible Learning Plan components can be built in Aptem that proactively seek feedback. These components are not mapped to the progress of the apprenticeship. They may look like an ‘external training’ component that links to a survey such as Survey Monkey or Qualtrics. This means you can demonstrate to inspectors that you have asked the right questions and collated the feedback ready to be acted on. 
Scenario 6: After a mock audit, you were pulled up on how your team manages Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL), and the number of errors that were spotted.
  • The challenge: Without the right tools in place, RPL can be a cumbersome process with a high level of inconsistency and error. It may be something that you team has never truly cracked, and you find yourselves battling with inaccuracy and inconsistency, potentially resulting in clawback.
  • How it works in Aptem: The free RPL calculator within Aptem removes the need for providers to manually calculate any reduction to funding based on a learner’s prior learning and experience, removing potential for error. Admin team effort is considerably reduced in Aptem because the system itself works out RPL claims, and tracks what support is provided for those learners with additional needs that you may be claiming additional funding for.
Scenario 7: It’s come to light that one particular cohort of learners is pretty demotivated, and there is little employer enthusiasm for the programme, claiming a lack of demonstrable new skills.
  • The challenge: If you don’t have a full picture of a learner’s starting points in relation to their end goal, you will likely end up with a demotivated learner and disengaged employer. Learner, tutor and employer perception of existing capability will likely vary, and change over time. A poor-quality measurement of prior learning, qualifications, skills and experience at the start of and during the learning will also result in a less tailored programme as materials are repeated or not targeted to the specific goals of the learner.
  • How it works in Aptem: Unlike some other systems, the Skills Radar in Aptem (also known as a Skills Scan) is fully customisable and can be set up for a coach, a learner and an employer to complete. Each of the scores is recorded individually, with one not overwriting the other. By default, Aptem tracks the historical assessment of all three parties, which means progression against the competency levels is easy to track throughout the programme. 
Scenario 8: You have been challenged on unidentified learning support needs hindering learner progression.
  • The challenge: In line with latest funding rules, you want to support those with pre-diagnosed learning support needs and also make sure you are identifying any hidden needs preventing the learner from completing the apprenticeship to the highest level. However, you’re wary of asking learners to log into yet more systems and take yet more time to complete the onboarding journey.
  • How it works in Aptem: Aptem Assess is an integrated cognitive assessment tool that enables you to seamlessly identify and respond to learning needs. It offers an estimated 87% of learners and experience that takes no more than 15 minutes and gives you as a provider, guidance on reasonable adjustments for Learning Plans and End Point Assessment. One system, one login. 
Scenario 9: Your coaches want to be creative in the learning assets they use, but are put off by technical restrictions.
  • The challenge: There is increasing pressure to keep learners engaged using the latest digital assets, and there is a host of materials available. However, you may find that some systems apply restrictions, for example around number of assets per activity and asset size, that hamper those efforts. If best-in-class learning delivery becomes admin-heavy, you’ll find your coaches simply back away from striving for the best.
  • How it works in Aptem: Learning is delivered in the same system as apprenticeship management, meaning one login and one interface to learn. There is a centralised resource library where you can upload and attach assets to multiple modules / programmes. As a result, your data is in one place and you can more easily spot learners who are falling behind / in need of additional assistance. 
Scenario 10: A learner has progressed through a level 3 to a level 5 management programme within the same funding year. You want to give auditors the full picture.
  • The challenge: It may be a strategic objective to encourage repeat business from learners as they move through the apprenticeship levels. Yet, when it comes to audits, some systems will only ever show the current programme, leaving auditors in the dark about a learner’s prior programmes within that funding year.
  • How it works in Aptem: If a learner has been on two programmes in a single funding year, the full history of both programmes is visible in Aptem and available to show auditors.

As the leading end-to-end apprenticeship management system, Aptem supports nearly 200 providers in achieving apprenticeship delivery excellence. Want to explore the possibilities within Aptem for your apprenticeship learner journey? Please ask us for a tailored system walkthrough. 

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