Deputy Director for Apprenticeship Programme Assurance

Department for Education

Closing date: 1 Jul 2018

Reference number





SCS Pay Band 1

Contract type


Business area

Education and Skills Funding Agency

Type of role

Operational Delivery
Senior leadership

Working pattern

Flexible working, Full-time, Job share, Part-time



Number of posts



Coventry, West Midlands

About the job

Job description

The Role

The Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) is an executive agency of the Department for Education, recently formed by the merger of the Education Funding Agency within DfE and the Skills Funding Agency within BIS. The ESFA Chief Executive is also a member of the DfE Board.

The Deputy Director reports to the Director of Apprenticeships and supports its delivery agenda, which is to:

• Ensure robust assurance of providers and employers
• Supports the end to end process of assurance through working with colleagues across the Agency and DfE
• Improve interactions with our customers

Key responsibilities

The Deputy Director Apprenticeship Programme Assurance is responsible for a division of around 35 staff, spread across a number of ESFA sites. The team is divided into four grade 6 led units.

Through effective leadership and management of these units, the Deputy Director is responsible for providing assurance over providers and other actors operating in the publicly-supported skills sector, promoting a high-quality, healthy and competitive skills market and protecting the investment of government, employers and learners through:

The design and development of a new Register of apprenticeship Training Providers that acts as market entry gateway and delivers and maintains a healthy delivery marketplace for employers and learners alike; and is fit for purpose in terms of providing assurance to the Accounting Officer and employers. The design and development of this will be through consultation and is planned to launch in September 2018.

Supporting the introduction of new End Point Assessment Organisations model to ensure there is capacity and breadth of choice for employers in relation to end point assessment [includes increased numbers, changes to payment processes and digitalisation of the service]

Maintenance and development of a programme to deliver completion certificates to all apprentices that complete an apprenticeship.

Continued development and implementation of a programme wide apprenticeship compliance and assurance strategy that is supported by a range of measures to ensure we have a consistent and clear approach to compliance.

Supporting the embedding of apprenticeship compliance and risk management into the work of every team/project across the Agency and ensuring that everyone in the organisation has a shared and common understanding of what compliance and risk management means.

Working with sector representatives to proactively encourage compliance in the marketplace.

Non-Compliance identified quickly, and appropriate action taken to reduce fraud and error

Continuously broadening and enhancing the organisation’s skills and knowledge to form the most effective prevention methods.

Production of funding rules setting out the requirements of the programme and where relevant guidance documents that support training providers and employers in their understanding of our apprenticeship requirements resulting in delivery of quality apprenticeships.

The development and maintenance of policies and processes that support training providers in managing their supply chain (subcontracting) documents to support training providers and employers looking to subcontract.

The development and delivery of a proactive, responsive and transparent market exit process that supports learners and employers in the event of market failure.

We are a national agency, facing outwards to increasing numbers of customers. We want to make sure that all our staff are engaged and empowered to act in the best interests of children and young people, and deliver value for money.

You will be expected to be a visible leader and take an active role in the leadership of the group and the wider ESFA. You will have roles which require you to work closely with policy colleagues in the DfE as well as operational colleagues in the ESFA. You will be expected to lead on aspects of national ESFA work.

What we are looking for:

The successful candidate will demonstrate the following essential skills and experience:

Strong leadership skills, able to effectively manage technical teams, inspiring and motivating people at all levels to be their best.

Previous and relevant operational delivery experience of working within a complex organisational structure to drive efficiency, improvements in delivery and value for money, and meet the needs of customers and users.

Ability to establish and maintain excellent stakeholder relationships, with the credibility to engage, influence and gain the confidence of others.

Experience of setting, communicating and translating a strategic service vision into deliverable operational plans, gaining buy in from senior leaders, and applying knowledge of digital tools and techniques.

A high degree of personal credibility and resilience, along with the enthusiasm and commitment to deliver and personally respond quickly to changing situations in complex high profile contexts to create a culture of flexibility, responsiveness and creativity.

Civil service competencies
• Changing and improving
• Making effective decisions
• Collaborating and partnering
• Delivering at pace
• Leading and communicating

Desirable Criteria

Experience of delivering a quality service.



Civil Service pension schemes may be available for successful candidates.

Things you need to know


Successful candidates must pass a disclosure and barring security check.
Successful candidates must pass basic security checks.

Nationality statement

Candidates will be subject to UK immigration requirements as well as Civil Service nationality rules.

If you're applying for a role requiring security clearance please be aware that foreign or dual nationality is not an automatic bar. However certain posts may have restrictions which could affect those who do not have sole British nationality or who have personal connections with certain countries outside the UK.

Selection process details

To apply for this post, please submit the following demonstrating how you meet the essential criteria:

• A CV;
• A 1,200 (max) statement of suitability

Applications should arrive not later than 1st July. Late applications will not be accepted.

Feedback will only be provided if you attend an interview or assessment.

Nationality requirements

Open to UK, Commonwealth and European Economic Area (EEA) and certain non EEA nationals. Further information on whether you are able to apply is available here.


Candidates in their probationary period are eligible to apply for vacancies within this department.

Working for the Civil Service

The Civil Service Code sets out the standards of behaviour expected of civil servants.

We recruit by merit on the basis of fair and open competition, as outlined in the Civil Service Commission's recruitment principles.
The Civil Service embraces diversity and promotes equality of opportunity. There is a guaranteed interview scheme (GIS) for candidates with disabilities who meet the minimum selection criteria.

Apply and further information

Contact point for applicants

Any questions about the role please contact

Sift/interview dates and location

Closing Date: 1st July 2018

Sift: Week Commencing 2nd July 2018

Panel Interviews: Week Commencing 16th July 2018


Candidate Pack Opens in new window (docx, 509kB)

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