Apprenticeships play an important part in the development offer for HMRC staff. At the start of 2021, we had over 6500 apprentices on programmes across 37 apprenticeships covering 13 professions. Our commitment and investment to apprenticeships has been recognised externally; winning The BAME Apprenticeships Award 2020 and coming 2nd in the 'Top 100 Apprenticeship Employers' National Awards in 2020.
We still have work to do though. We want to further develop our overall strategy for apprenticeships within the department, aligned with an ambitious cross government apprenticeship strategy and approach. We want a much greater focus on quality, support, relevance, consistency and compliance and we want to ensure that the apprentice experience is at the heart of our work. We want HMRC to be the employer of choice; a truly 'great place to work' which attracts and retains the very best and most diverse talent, ensuring we have the capabilities to deliver now and in the future.
This exciting new role will be fundamental in helping us to achieve these aspirations. Working with the backdrop of an enterprise-wide learning transformation programme, this role will be key in driving the agenda for structured accredited programmes in HMRC. You'll be responsible for bringing together and owning all strategic and operational aspects of apprenticeships and accreditation, deploying at relevant and integrated points to support planned capability development.
The post holder will be accountable for the leadership of team of approx. 50 people, delivering a high-quality, consistent, affordable and compliant offer across the various programmes (which include some that are delivered via the employer-provider model).
Specifically, you will:
Develop the Strategy:
• Provide transformational thought-leadership, external insights and guidance to lead the strategic thinking on apprenticeships for HMRC.
• Work with the different business groups, professions and the wider Learning Transformation Programme to understand and influence the positioning and strategy for apprenticeships moving forward.
• Establish an effective governance structure to enable decisions to be made both quickly but also within the context of HMRC's wider learning transformation.
• Investigate feasibility for a potential new 'shared-service' function for apprenticeships at HMRC, providing guidance on the optimum size, scope and structure.
Embed Best-Practice, Consistency and Compliance within delivery:
• Work with the individual apprenticeship providers across HMRC to understand the challenges and opportunities and promote consistency and best-practice within each.
• Have oversight of internal delivery ensuring adherence to regulatory frameworks and funding models, through an effective and independent auditing process.
• Ensure high-quality end-to-end service delivery and process management across all apprenticeships - utilising technology where appropriate - striving for an Ofsted rating of 'outstanding'.
• Develop an effective reporting and feedback strategy which encompasses both qualitative and quantitative progress against goals.
• Ensure the effective and consistent Procurement and Contract Management of all externally provided apprenticeships.
• Work with finance to ensure compliant and most effective use of levy funds and to improve financial forecasting.
• Work with the business to understand upcoming demand and ensure mechanisms are in place to understand resource implications and ability to deliver.
Promote & Champion:
• Responsible for representing HMRC with other government departments such as Cabinet Office and Department for Education, contributing to continuous improvement and other government-wide initiatives.
• Promote use of apprenticeships throughout the organisation, as part of a wider suite of learning opportunities.
• Build a strong network amongst key stakeholders (both internally and externally) to ensure that the HMRC Apprenticeship brand is positively represented and reflective of latest thinking and best practice.
The successful applicant will have the following essential knowledge and experience:
• Expertise and technical knowledge of formally accredited programmes, including apprenticeships, with both internally and externally managed approaches - including the levy, devolved nations policies, end-to-end compliance and regulatory requirements (including Ofsted and ESFA).
• Experience operating at a senior level, developing and implementing apprenticeship and other people strategies.
• Experience of delivering service improvements, quality assurance, compliance, audit and continuous improvement.
• Experience managing third party suppliers including specific experience of commercial processes, tenders and outsourcing.
• Experience of leading and managing service delivery in a large, complex, matrix environment often with significant amounts of ambiguity.
• Experienced people leader and manager - leading multi-disciplinary teams in a direct and matrixed structure.
The successful applicant will have the following essential skills:
• Communication - ability to communicate effectively at all levels; ensuring HMRC is represented with credibility and gravitas in all communications.
• Stakeholder Management - ability to build effective and credible relationships across a range of stakeholder groups both internally and externally.
• Functional Leadership - ability to challenge and support a team to be accountable and confident. Being a coaching manager - inspiring and engaging those around you.
• Self Starter - Ability to work independently and in ambiguous complex environments, with strong focus on performance and quality.
• Financial Management and Numerical Interpretation - ability to manage third party contracts, make sense of and model large volumes of complex data, budget and levy forecasting and management