Apprenticeship Recruitment: Step by Step guide
Apprenticeships support the development of a skilled workforce to aid our world leading teaching and research activity. All apprenticeship training is funded through the University’s Apprenticeship Levy.
If you are thinking of hiring an apprentice, please get in touch with the Apprenticeships Team to discuss your requirements. We can offer advice and support at every stage.
- Identify apprenticeship
If you are considering recruiting a new entrant apprentice, please take a look at our apprenticeship recruitment calendar to choose the correct course and plan your timeline.
- Sign up to an information session
Please sign up to one of our monthly apprenticeship information sessions to learn more about the apprenticeship process.
- Develop a job description
We have developed a range of apprenticeship-specific documents including template job descriptions and adverts. The job description will set out the duties and the skills required for the role. Consider which apprenticeship course may be suitable for this role.
- Contact the Apprenticeships Team
Once you have a draft job description, contact the Apprenticeships Team who will then help to identify a suitable apprenticeship course and find a training provider. The team will put you in direct contact with the provider(s) to discuss the course and your role in more detail. As part of this discussion, you should consider how the provider can support your shortlisting process (see step 6 for more details on this) and the interview process.
- Decision time
Following this meeting, if you decide to go ahead with recruiting an apprentice, please inform your local HR Team so the correct local approvals can be obtained to proceed with role and they can raise a Staff Request in PeopleXD.
When the Staff Request has been approved, in conjunction with your local HR Team please forward the draft advert to the Apprenticeship Team, who will review this and recommended any changes for your approval. At this point you will also need to confirm the final job description with the Training Provider. Once the training provider, apprenticeship team and recruiting manager/HR have approved the advert and job description, the vacancy is ready to go live.
Recruitment to apprenticeship vacancies will be managed through the Recruitment Dashboard on the University's HR system. For advice on setting up the vacancy, please contact the Apprenticeships Team or refer to the Apprenticeships scenario factsheet. There is a specific Apprenticeship application form. You now have the option to customise the application form to your particular apprenticeship role by asking two additional questions. These questions should be checked by the Apprenticeships Team before you add them. Once the vacancy is live, share the link with both the Apprenticeships Team and the training provider to advertise with their networks and on the Government Apprenticeship website.
Speak with the training provider to agree the most suitable way to shortlist applicants. We recommend that on a weekly basis (or once the vacancy has closed), your department should undertake initial shortlisting and contact the applicants who are successful at this stage. These applicants are sent to the training provider to check eligibility for the apprenticeship training.
Once the training provider has confirmed which applicants are eligible, you will review the list and select candidates to interview. You may wish to ask the training provider to sit on the interview panel, or to assist with other selection methods. Please provide feedback to any unsuccessful candidates who were interviewed, referring to the selection criteria for the role.
Once you have completed the selection and identified your chosen candidate(s), please telephone them to make a verbal offer of employment. Please inform the Apprenticeships Team and the training provider of the outcome. Please confirm the dates for the apprenticeship with the training provider before issuing the contract.
Contractual conditions: New entrant apprentices are appointed under the terms and conditions specified in the Apprenticeship Agreement contract (which has the Apprenticeship Learner Agreement embedded). This document is generated from PeopleXD and the Apprenticeships Team can help to complete this. Apprentices are also bound by the Handbook for Support Staff, with the exception of their pay progression and the policy on fixed-term contracts.
- Update the HR system
You will need to update the apprenticeship User Defined Field (UDF) details for each new apprentice on the University's HR system. Please follow the guidance on the Apprenticeships scenario factsheet.
- Starting the apprenticeship
Once your apprentice has started in their post, they will be invited to an induction with the Apprenticeships Team. The training provider will correspond with the apprentice's line manager to make sure the apprentice is set up on their course and has completed any relevant documents.
Template versions of the following documents are available for download:
Apprenticeship Job description
Budgeting for an apprentice
Apprenticeships are coordinated by the central HR team and are funded by the Apprenticeship Levy which means there are no additional costs to departments for the training. Please refer to the Government guidance on how apprenticeship levy funding works. The department may also receive incentive payments for recruiting apprentices.
Your department will normally be responsible for the following:
- Provision of the relevant books and equipment that the apprentice needs
- Travel expenses incurred by the apprentice to attend their training course(s) (when these are over and above the costs of their normal travel to work)
There is an agreed salary progression framework that applies to all apprentices (except for existing staff on Apprenticeship training). As with all University employees, the Apprenticeship scale meets the Oxford Living Wage.
Apprentices are appointed on a fixed-term contract, which matches the length of their apprenticeship(s). At the end of the fixed-term contract, you may wish to appoint the apprentice directly into a role in your department if a suitable opportunity is available. Alternatively, you may wish to provide support in finding other employment or training.
We encourage you to consider progression opportunities for apprentices as part of your strategic planning and budgeting.
Please refer to the End of Contract guidance for more information.