The Apprenticeship Route to Level 4 CIPS
How the Procurement Apprenticeship with APA springboarded Danny Forrest’s career in procurement
NH: How long had you been working in procurement before you looked to start the Level 4 Apprenticeship?
DF: No time at all, I was a chef at beefeater before I started my level 4 Apprenticeship
NH: How did you become aware of the Level 4 procurement apprenticeship and what was it about the apprenticeship route that interested you?
DF: I became aware of the level 4 Apprenticeship through Historic England Public Procurement Apprentice job advert.
Unfortunately, due to illness I was not able to complete my A Levels so I decided I would look at an Apprenticeship as an alternative route to becoming professionally qualified. I have never looked back since; I’ve gained experience in working in a professional environment that I never would have got at Uni.
NH: How did you find the learning experience with APA?
- Really enjoyable
- The support level from APA was fantastic
- Ftted to the way I learn, e.g. group work
- I gained experience from other procurement professionals from other organisations
- Helped me to understand the CIPS topics
NH: How has gaining the Level 4 Apprenticeship helped you in your day- to- day role in procurement?
DF: Sourcing suitable suppliers to provide services, goods and works, to help achieve the organisation's business objectives and maintain their portfolio of properties.
- Running Tendering procedures
- Bid Evaluation and creating evaluation criteria
- TUPE, Terms and conditions and Law
- Public Contract Regulation/ EU laws.
- Dealing with Stakeholders
- Understanding budgeting
- Supplier management
- Business behaviours
- Key soft skills
- Good communication
- Managing an E-Procurement system
- Structuring Decline letters and giving feed-back
NH: How has your career progressed since completing your Level 4 Apprenticeship?
DF: After completing my apprenticeship, I was offered a procurement assistance role at Historic England, which I turned down because to my surprise I was head hunted by English Heritage’s Senior Quantity Surveyor. Who asked me if I’d apply for the Procurements and Contracts Co-ordinator in the Estates Dept. Professional Services Team. Which I did and I was offered the job. I have now been in post for 1 year.
It also currently makes me the only procurement person employed by English Heritage until the new central team is created sometime this year, which I’ll be looking to move into.
NH: What advice would you give for someone considering the Apprenticeship route with APA to their CIPS qualifications?
DF: Don’t hesitate! It’s by far the best thing to have happened to my working life and possible future. Not only has my Apprenticeship helped me to find a very good job, it has benefited me in my everyday life too.