BIG Apprenticeships

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Lead: Suzanne Profit, Course Coordinator Business Innovation and Growth GLLM
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In short

Business Innovation and Growth (BIG) Higher Apprenticeship programme uses EntreComp to map learning resources and address local employer needs

About

GLLM’s Level 5 Business Innovation and Growth (BIG) Apprenticeship is designed to meet the skills needs of businesses and organisations seeking to develop and grow. It promotes innovation and creativity across business activities and supports staff to develop appropriate skills. The programme’s learning objectives, lesson plans and schemes of work were all developed before EntreComp became available but the link between the two is significant.

BIG needs mapped against EntreComp to support local employers

The BIG Apprenticeship programme’s learning resources and outcomes are being mapped against EntreComp. The framework describes the needs and priorities of local employers in a very clear and accessible format. This is helping to build relationships with local employers by having a common language and understanding of the benefits of the programme’s outcomes and how they relate to employers’ recruitment and skills development needs.

The programme forms an integral part of GLLM’s commitment to support the local economy in North Wales by equipping local people with the skills and qualifications needed to ensure the competitiveness and success of the region. With over 34,000 students and sites across the area, it plays a key role in the local economy and contributes to the Welsh Government’s priorities of innovation and growth.

The Apprenticeship is designed to develop the skills needed to be innovative and to support organisational growth. It is suitable for a wide range of job roles where innovation is an important aspect. Job roles may be very innovation-focused – e.g. business development, marketing or product development executive/manager or innovation scout. Or, they may be general roles which benefit from an innovative perspective – e.g. supervisor or operations executive/manager.

Recent research has identified a worrying mismatch between the skills ranked as important to the performance of businesses, and those of recent entrants to the labour market. This Apprenticeship seeks to address this by focusing on the enterprising and supporting skills identified by employers as being most needed. These include creative problem-solving, critical thinking, making things happen, being resourceful, managing complexity, communication skills, empathy, intercultural awareness, leadership skills, team working, coaching, mentoring, lobbying and negotiating – all of which map to EntreComp.

Next steps

The process of mapping EntreComp against the lesson plan and scheme of work for each module of the Apprenticeship is being completed. The intention is that the entrepreneurship competences will become embedded within the teaching, assessment and learner self-reflection across the programme.

Learners will continue to develop the skills needed for business innovation and growth, and so reduce the gap between the skills that employers need and those readily available. Being able to articulate their learning in terms of entrepreneurship competences also helps them improve their employment prospects.