These are my latest reflections on the impact COVID-19 has had on new higher and degree apprenticeship vacancies. It’s an update to the blogs I posted on 19th and 26th May.
The headline is that there has been a further downturn, although there is some cause for optimism. During the week of 25th to 29th May I recorded 10 new Degree Apprenticeship vacancies and 22 new Higher Apprenticeship vacancies in England.
In the 10 weeks immediately prior to ‘lockdown’ (13th January to 20th March) I recorded:
- 1,004 new degree apprenticeships and 811 new higher apprenticeships giving a total of 1,815 and an average of 182 new vacancies each week.
In the 10 weeks since the start of lockdown (23rd March to 29th May) I have recorded:
- 206 new degree apprenticeships and 165 new higher apprenticeships giving a total of 371 and an average of 37 new vacancies each week.
This represents an overall reduction of 80% in the number of new vacancies during the last 10 weeks, which is marginally worse than the overall reduction after 9 weeks (78%) and after 8 weeks (77%). However, last week was Spring Bank Holiday week, during which I would have expected activity to be slower, and I’m optimistic that we might see an improvement on this next week.
Updated ‘league tables’
I have also updated my league tables in which I record the number of new vacancies in England broken down by what I loosely term ‘occupational areas’, which I find more useful in guidance than strictly adhering to the names of different apprenticeship standards.
Since the ‘lockdown’ date of 23/3/20, the occupational areas represented in each category are now as follows (starting with the highest):
In total 25 occupational areas are represented so far and minimum starting salaries still range from £8,092 to £25,065pa.
1st Digital Technology Solutions* (current total – 50)
2nd Accountancy & Taxation
3rd Financial Services
4th Chartered Management
5th Control Engineers
6th Data Scientists & Analysts
7th Broadcast & Media Systems Engineers
8th Chemical Engineers
9th Building, Property & Valuation Surveyors
10th Building Services Design Engineers
10th Civil Engineers
10th Food Technologists
10th Mechanical, Product Design & Development Engineers
10th Packaging Technologists
15th Electronic Engineers
15th Materials Scientists
15th Quantity Surveyors
18th Business to Business Sales Executive
18th Cyber Security Technologist
18th Environmental Practitioner
18th Environmental Health Practitioner
18th Laboratory Scientist
18th Marketing Management
18th Supply Chain Leadership
18th User Experience (UX) Professional
*Digital Technology Solutions covers a range of specific fields such as Software Engineering, Network Engineering, Data Analytics, Cyber Security, Infrastructure Engineering or BIM (Building Information Modelling).
In total 27 occupational areas are represented so far and minimum starting salaries still range from £6,474 to £29,000pa.
1st Software Developers (current total – 29)
2nd Project Management
2nd Science Laboratory Technicians
4th Data Analysts
5th Broadcast & Media Systems Technicians
5th Manufacturing Engineering Technicians
7th Investment Consultants
8th Electrical Power Distribution
9th Accountancy & Taxation
10th Information Systems Business Analysts
10th Network Engineers
10th Software Testers
13th Buying, Procurement & Supply Chain
14th Cyber Security Officers
14th Policy Officers
16th HR/Learning & Development/Employability Practitioners
16th Insurance Professionals
16th Sales Executives
20th Children, Young People & Family Practitioner
20th Hospitality Management
20th IT Support Professional
20th Learning & Skills Teacher
20th Public Relations
20th Quantity Surveying Technician
20th Regulatory Compliance Officer
20th Revenue & Benefits Officer
I will continue to observe how it pans out this week and I aim to post another update next Monday. In particular I expect to see degree apprenticeships in Policing represented for the first time, as I’m aware of at least one police force that has just opened recruitment. (Please note that the reference above to a higher apprenticeship for a Policy Officer isn’t a typo, it does mean Policy not Police.)
Watch this space for further updates.
© Alan Bullock, 1/6/2020