Smart Cities Project – Building a better connected UK


Huawei Smart Cities

ITEC is working with Huawei on its visionary ‘Smart Cities’ Project.   During the summer and autumn of 2017, ITEC has gained HAINA Academy Status with Huawei and has the first qualified trainer in the UK. #Basildon #Essex #Smartcities #Huawei

What is a Smart City?

The term ‘smart city’ is not clearly defined, which is creating confusion and uncertainty for many UK cities.

However, what most smart city definitions have in common, is that they consider the use of new technologies (usually ICT) and data as the means to solve the city’s economic, social and environmental challenges.

Many of us in the UK tend to consider a smart city as clean, with good transport connections.   The words we associate with smart cities include “technology”, “connected”, “fast internet” and “modern”.

In reality, Smart technologies can provide solutions for cities by helping them save money, reduce carbon emissions and manage traffic flows, as well as making local authorities more efficient and more approachable (online).  Or at least that is the intention.

One stumbling block may be the ability of our residents to keep pace with the technological advances that organisations like Huawei are able to provide.  They will undoubtedly have the enthusiasm and the ability to perform great things, but without the infrastructure, education and training for the people using the technology, whether they are Technicians, Administrators or the general public, then progress will be slow.

Quick wins are installation of fibre networks to give access to faster connection to the outside world (always welcome) and improved internal systems. Then those of us who are not quite so “tech-savvy” will get used to having to use them.

However, the perfect Smart City of the future is not that far away.   Part of the Huawei Smart Cities offer includes:

Smart Government

Better services, quick and useful decision-making, forward-looking planning — government done right

Safe CityHuawei INA

Intelligent IT, communications, and video-analysis technologies to keep the public safe

Smart Education

Communicate, educate, succeed. Spread knowledge online to make students smarter and teachers better.

Smart Healthcare

It takes strong medicine to stay healthy and Huawei’s innovative IT solutions help make it happen

Smart Transportation

Integrate traffic signal control, e-Police, and checkpoints for convenient, smooth transportation

Smart Campus

Smart Campus Solution focuses on digital security, intelligent property management, and ‘smart’ office

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ITEC’s Huawei Academy is here!


Huawei INAITEC Learning Technologies and Huawei, a leading global information and communications technology (ICT) solutions provider, have launched their HAINA (Huawei Authorized Information Network Academy) cooperation.    A formal launch is planned and will be held in the next few months in Basildon #Essex

ITEC is also nearing accreditation as a HALP (Huawei Authorised Learning Partner), which means we will be carrying out the training of other trainers from HAINA around the UK.

Huawei AIITEC is proud to announce it has the first trainer in the UK Qualified to train both students and other trainers.

Huawei is also a world leader in smart cities technologies and is looking forward to expanding its influence in the UK as part of its ongoing relationship with ITEC.

This not-for-profit partnership programme allows academic institutions to deliver Huawei Certification training to their students. The programme not only cultivates ICT talent and helps students become employment ready, but also aids in filling the global ICT skills gap by creating a bridge between academia and industry.

A wide range of key industry areas will be covered by the Huawei ICT Academy Programme and students will have the opportunity to gain industry certification and expertise in networking technologies, security, cloud computing technologies, IT storage systems and big data.  Students will gain practical hands-on experience on Huawei’s latest networking technologies as well as being able to download their own personal copy of Huawei’s ENSP (Enterprise Network Simulation Platform) networking simulator.

Kirk Redhead, ITEC’s Business Development Manager, says “The fast-changing nature of technology means that it is crucial for our students to get the best possible hands-on experience to prepare them for future careers in the sector.  Participation in the HAINA programme will give our students a great opportunity to challenge themselves and learn from the best in the industry.”  ITEC will also be making this learning opportunity available for its apprentices and employers in the local ICT sector.

Huawei is currently cooperating with over 240 universities to open Huawei ICT Academies across China, North America, Europe, Australia and more. Every year, the Academy trains over 16,200 students globally. The Huawei ICT Academy programme also runs a global annual ‘Skills Competition’ for students, giving each country’s winners the opportunity to visit China for the finals and compete with other students from across the globe.

ITEC supports both Levy and non-Levy paying employers


So… where are we since the Apprenticeship Levy was introduced?

Here at ITEC, we have been preparing ourselves and our employers for the Apprenticeship Reforms for the past couple of years.   The ways in which Apprenticeships are delivered and funded have both changed dramatically.   ITEC staff have been attending the readiness groups for the new standards and preparing for the funding changes from the Government Agency.

The Apprenticeship Levy was introduced on 1st April 2017, with all new Apprenticeship starts from the 1st May being funded either through the levy or via the non-levy contracting system.   Levy funds are added to the employer’s digital account on the Apprenticeship Service and allocated per apprentice to the training provider, e.g. ITEC.

There were some initial challenges when the Agency cancelled the non-levy tendering process due to commence on 1st May and extended the sub-contracting process.   We were then advised that our prime contractors, South Essex College and Colchester Institute, had not been given sufficient non-levy funding for themselves let alone their sub-contractors but, with some careful planning, they were able to find some funding to support ITEC’s non-levy paying employers.

Needless to say, April and May were very quiet and we spent this time reassuring our employers to stick with Apprenticeships   During June, July and August, we helped some levy paying employers to make sense of the new system and utilise their funding to engage with apprenticeships.   At the moment, we have 16 employers and their apprentices signed up for the new system and several more in the pipeline.

At the end of July, we calculated our success rates and are very pleased to report that they remain excellent at 86.33% averaged across the last 3 years.

 

Josh Barwick close up

Joshua Barwick, Apprentice of the Year 2017, with ITEC’s former CEO, Malcolm Bridges

As a small, specialised and local IT provider, we aim to meet the needs of apprentices and businesses within a 30-mile radius of our centre in Basildon.   Our specialist training programmes for apprentices and employees include IT Practitioner, IT Professional, IT Infrastructure Technician, Cyber Security, Unified Communications Support/Troubleshooter, Digital and Business administration.

 

We still have another challenge to face with non-levy funding, in that the Agency launched a new tendering process for non-levy starts for funding from January 2018.   After changing the parameters of the tender right in the middle of the process, we will not know if we have been successful until December 2017!    However, with the support of our 2 prime contractors, we hope to meet the needs of all non-levy paying employers until all businesses are on the digital Apprenticeship Service, expected April 2019.

If you need any help accessing apprenticeship funding for your employees or to support recruitment, whether a levy payer or a small business, ITEC can help.  Contact Toni Marshall on 01268 286929 or toni@iteclt.co.uk.  We can help or point you in the right direction to get further help!

ITEC launches Cyber Security Apprenticeships


They’re prepared for trouble

meerkats

Are you?

Once again, the world is hit by Cyber-attacks.  The NHS, high profile business, the Government, etc.    But it’s not just large companies that are at risk!

Could your organisation be next?

Most organisations hold sensitive data about their clients and bank details are often stored on a computer that also has access to the internet.   There’s never been a better time to have an apprentice on ITEC’s Level 4 Cyber Security Technologist programme, launching in the autumn of 2017. #Apprenticeship #Essex

Knowledge modules within the Apprenticeship are supported by professional CompTIA qualifications including Network+, Security+ and Advanced Security Practitioner.

The Apprenticeship Standard for the Cyber Security Technologist at Level 4 includes:-

  • Cyber Security Introduction (as a core module)
  • Network and Digital Communications Theory
  • Security Case Development and Design Good Practice
  • Security Technology Building Blocks
  • Employment of Cryptology
  • Risk Assessment
  • Governance, Organisation, Law, Regulation and Standards

If you would like to find out more about how to protect yourselves please get in touch with Kirk Redhead, Business Development Manager, 01268 286929 kirk@iteclt.co.uk

 

The power of partnerships for Apprentices #Apprenticeships #Essex


Audrey Clark, of Brentwood Community Print, is our ITEC Line Manager of the Year 2017 (see Annual Awards Blog).   This month, Audrey guest blogs and tells us how successful an apprenticeship opportunity can be for a young person who needs a little bit of extra TLC.     Despite her own health concerns during 2016, Audrey has mentored her apprentice so well and thoroughly deserves the accolade of Line Manager of the Year.  This is Audrey’s story…….

BCP logo

Apprenticeship Case study CW (Female, now aged 21)

BACKGROUND

CW first came to Brentwood Community Print CIC (BCP) when she was 17.

Experiencing social isolation, depression and chronic anxiety she lived with her family who were experiencing their own problems and CW had become virtually a recluse.

Under the care of the local Mental Health Trust she was referred to an employment specialist who could see that due to her high levels of anxiety, she was far away from being ready for employment.

CW one day arrived at BCP with her employment specialist. We could not see her face because she had covered it with her long hair and was crying uncontrollably.

For some weeks CW would present in the same way and it was difficult to reach her, but eventually, we did and she slowly began to trust a few people and initially worked with a female mentor making handmade greeting cards. She then was encouraged to try learning some photoshop work in the design area and with her mentor began to relax as she enjoyed working with images sourced from the Internet.

2015 AND A BOOK LAUNCH

During the following year, we worked on helping to build her confidence and she was supported by her mentor to volunteer at Brentwood Theatre assisting with window dressing and serving ice creams during the interval of a children’s show.

CW had written a couple of books during her period of isolation and her mentor then supported her with the creation of a cover for a book she was trying to get published.

We were all elated on discovering that a publisher had shown an interest and when she shared this information with the Theatre Administrator, he offered to let us use the Theatre for a Book Launch using 2 local actors to read extracts from the book to bring it alive. Members from BCP and our supporters as well as CW’s family attended the launch that was very professionally produced using a preview video made by CW and a close friend. The story was covered by the local paper and was a big achievement.

This was in February 2015, and CW now 19, was starting to grow in confidence.

LAYING FOUNDATIONS

During the summer of 2015, we introduced CW to the finance side of BCP and she had begun learning invoicing and reconciling the till when her mentor (me) was suddenly hospitalised with a stroke.

CW attended BCP for one day a week and coped admirably with working on her own until her mentor was slowly able to return.

 APPRENTICESHIP OPPORTUNITY

In the latter part of the year, Brentwood Council made a proposal to BCP to fund some of the wages for 2 apprentices and CW was identified as one of the people who would benefit from this.

Having a long-term health condition meant that CW could take advantage of the Essex County Council diversity scheme for apprentices which meant that the apprenticeship could be managed over a period of 18 months with a shorter working week of 3 days.

CW not only had to get used to working for 3 days a week and work through the tiredness but also had to overcome her fear of taking exams and attending college but ITEC Learning Technologies, the training provider, was very understanding and supportive. They regularly came to BCP to monitor CW’s progress and were always pleased with the content of the course work set and exam results.

CW completed her qualification in time, in November 2016 and obtained a Level 2 Apprenticeship in Business Finance and Administration.

GROWING WITH CONFIDENCE

During these 18 months, CW was,  on occasion, attending business networking breakfasts and events, supporting our Outreach Director in delivering external courses to businesses and helping with promoting the business in general. She found it very difficult to find the confidence to speak to people she hadn’t met before but gradually, very slowly, began to overcome this.

In November 2016, CW accompanied me and another Director to Westminster in London, where we delivered a presentation to an ACAS breakfast as we had been featured as a case study in their report on managing mental health in the workplace. This involved staying overnight in a hotel,  again something CW had not experienced before.

In February 2017, CW played a valuable part in setting up the equipment and managing the slides for a power point presentation during our workshop that was co-produced with and delivered at the University of Essex. In front of some 30 delegates, who were mostly employers from around Essex, CW facilitated one of the sessions. She felt extremely anxious but we were very proud that she took up the challenge despite feeling terrified.

CW’s biggest accolade, however, was winning an award from her Training Provider, ITEC  Learning Technologies, where she was runner-up for Apprentice of The Year 2017 and it was a proud moment to witness her going on stage to collect her trophy and pose for the camera. Something she would never have done even a year before.

AND NOW…….

With the funding expired, CW continues to volunteer with BCP for one day per week still working on the finance side and is currently mentoring one of our volunteers who is in recovery from mental illness.

CW is also using all the skills learnt to start building a business with her mother. All the facets required to do so, from company logo design, advertising through social media, marketing, networking, promoting, knowledge of cash flow and maintaining accounts have all been learnt during her apprenticeship.

BCP are very proud to have been part of the journey and very thankful to Brentwood Borough Council for giving us the opportunity to make a difference.

We all wish CW every success in her new venture and a bright future ahead.

 

Audrey Clark close up

Audrey receiving her Line Manager of the Year Award 2017 from Glibarco’s Jamie Wood

 

Audrey Clark

Managing Director

Brentwood Community Print CIC

1 JULY 2017

Levy-paying Employers – How to use the Apprenticeship Service


Employers – Using the Apprenticeship Service

Employers who will be using the Apprenticeship Service need to register to manage their apprenticeship funds at:

https://manage-apprenticeships.service.gov.uk/

At the moment, this service is only available to employers who are paying the apprenticeship levy.

Use this service to:-Apprenticeship_Employers_Badge

  • Create an account
  • Add organisations
  • Link your PAYE schemes
  • Invite members of your team to use the service

 

When you set up your account you will need your Government Gateway login details for the PAYE schemes that you want to include in your account.

 

When you employ apprentices, the PAYE scheme they are paid through must be attached to your account.

You will need to sign the electronic agreement declaration with the Government Agency before you can spend any funds in your account.  Once you’ve accepted the agreement you can:

  • Add or amend information about apprentices and training
  • Authorise payment to your training provider
  • View payment activity in your account and view your balance
  • Pause or stop a payment to your training provide if the apprentice leaves

N.B. if you do not add any apprentices to your account, your training provider will not get paid.  The data they submit must match the information you’ve approved for each apprentice in your employ.

To choose a Training Provider, use the ‘Find Apprenticeship Training’ service at:

https://findapprenticeshiptraining.sfa.bis.gov.uk/

If you have chosen a standard you will need to select an assessment organisation, which ITEC staff will be able to assist with.

A price and schedule of payments needs to be contractually agreed with your training provider for each apprentice, which includes the cost training and assessment (including any costs for end point assessment on a standards apprenticeship).

Once your apprenticeship training has commenced, monthly payments will be taken from your account and passed to your training provider electronically.

For help and assistance, please contact Kirk or Toni at ITEC on 01268 286292 – we are here to help!

 

 

 

Study Programme February 2017 – April 2017


WHAT IS A STUDY PROGRAMME?

Students aged 16 to 19 are funded for an individual study programme aimed at providing a substantial academic or vocational qualification and work experience. Our Study programme is aimed towards young people wanting to learn more about the IT and Business Administration sector.  We tailor the programme for each student and have clear study or employment goals reflecting the learner’s prior attainment. We want to give young people imaginative ways to develop, record and certificate a wide range of their personal qualities, abilities and achievements, as well as introducing them to new activities and challenges.

WHAT DO I LEARN?

1) PC Maintenance and Repair –  This is an entry point into the world of PC hardware and software maintenance. It is an ideal starting point for those who have an interest in PC maintenance and repair. You will learn about Computer Hardware, Maintenance and Fault Diagnosis of IT Systems, Testing IT Systems, Installing Software, Customer Support in the IT Environment.

2) CompTIA IT Fundamentals. This covers foundational IT concepts including identifying and explaining computer components, installing software, establishing network connectivity and preventing security risks.

3) European Computer Driving Licence (ECDL) – ECDL is the world’s leading computer skills certification.  The ECDL programme defines the skills and competencies necessary to use a computer and common computer applications. It offers a wide range of modules including Computer Essentials, Word Processing and IT Security.

4) The development of functional literacy and numeracy skills. We will support you to reach functional skills at Level 2 in both Maths and English by the time you have finished the programme.

5) Employability Skills, Interview Techniques and CV Writing.  Whilst there will always be job-specific skills that an employer is looking for, most employers will also want you to have some general skills.  These general job skills are sometimes called “employability skills”. Having employability skills can help you get a job. They can also help you stay in a job and work your way to the top. If you score a job interview, chances are you’ll be asked questions about your job-specific skills and your employability skills. This will include Communication, Teamwork, Problem solving, Self-management. We will help you to create a CV that matches your skill set and that mirrors local employment opportunities.   The aim is to ensure young people develop the skills that local employers need and as a result reduce the high levels of youth unemployment in the local area.

5) Work experience. We aim to support all learners into external work placements to practice the skills they have learnt. This enables the development of good employment skills and with support provides an environment which enables learners to build their confidence and understanding of the world of work.  Where possible and appropriate, we endeavour to match the work placement to the learner’s employment and career goals.

20170406_161640This is what our learners had to say about their experiences.

Why were you initially interested in the programme?

Matthew N – I applied for some apprenticeships but was not successful and was then offered a place on the Study Programme. I wasn’t getting on well in college and this looked like a fresh start for me.

George M – I was interested because the course involved work experience as well as learning which offers a chance for an apprenticeship. I was successful at my work experience and was offered an apprenticeship with the same company.

What did you think of the training you received?

Matthew N – I feel the training was good and the majority of it very useful.

George M – I found the employability lessons and ECDL lessons very helpful as I learned much more about the work place and gained more experience and knowledge in interviews and ECDL.

John F – I think the training was great and the work experience was helpful. I found PC Maintenance and CompTIA IT Fundamentals useful as they taught me a lot about ICT that I did not know.

Michael F – The training has been fantastic, I have learnt a lot during my time at ITEC. They have helped me with more than just qualifications and knowledge; they have helped me with my confidence and professionalism around others. I have also gained work experience and have an idea of what it is like in a working environment.

What difference has the study programme made to you personally?

Matthew N – Communication, confidence and more intelligent in different areas. I have now started an apprenticeship at a company I like and I am really enjoying it.

George M – I believe that this course has given me much insight to jobs and has also helped me gain qualifications I did not have.  It helped me gain confidence, which is important for the future.

John F – It has taught me a lot and shown me more about the possibilities and opportunities of an apprenticeship.  It has helped my confidence when talking to others.

 

ITEC Awards 2017 – Results


ITEC Awards 2017

It’s that time of year again!  The ITEC Awards 2017 were held at Bowers & Pitsea Football Club on Thursday 18th May 2017.  #Essex #Apprenticeships

The 2017 winners were announced and the results are:-

Social Media Apprentice of the Year

Outstanding achievement by a Social Media apprentice.  Presented by Reed in Partnership

Winner – KIRSTY WALKER

 CompTIA learner of the Year

A special award recognising the effort and achievement of learners undertaking CompTIA exams as part of their coursework.  Sponsored by CompTIA UK.

Winner – BILLY BROWN

Runner-up – DANIEL COSSINGTON

ITEC Student of the Year

Awarded for outstanding achievement and effort by a student undertaking a course with ITEC (non-apprenticeship courses).  Sponsored by Reed in Partnership.

Winner – MARC HOPPER

Employer of the Year

Awarded for outstanding development and support of learners at work.  Sponsored by Engleman Wills & Powers of Attorney

Winner – MUSTO LIMITED

Runner-up – GILBARCO VEEDER-ROOT

IT Apprentice of the Year

Awarded for outstanding achievement by an apprentice undertaking an IT Diploma apprenticeship.  Sponsored by Vertical Systems Limited.

Winner – DOUGLAS MARTIN

Runner-up – DANIEL FISK

Line Manager of the Year

Awarded for outstanding development and support of learners at work.  Presented by Gilbarco Veeder-Root.

Winner – AUDREY CLARK (Brentwood Community Print)

Runner-up – RICHARD BOWLES  (Gable Hall School)

ITEC Staff Member of the Year

A special award recognising the effort and support of a member of the ITEC team.

Winner – TARA FREETH – 25 Years’ Service Award

Business Admin Apprentice of the Year

Awarded for outstanding achievement by a level 2 apprentice undertaking a Business Administration or Customer Service apprenticeship.  Sponsored by Musto Limited.

Winner – JEMMA DAWSON

The ‘Malcolm Bridges’ Award

This award is to recognise the achievement and effort of a learner who has overcome barriers or difficulties to achieve the outcomes on his/her course

Winner – JOSHUA BARWICK

Runner-up – CARA WHITE

Well done to all the finalists!  Congratulations to the winners and runners-up!!   Pictures to follow.

A big thank you to all our sponsors, employers and learners.

Wendy Vickers

ITEC CEO

 

ITEC Awards Night – 18th May 2017


This year’s awards night will be held on 18th May 2017 at the Bowers & Pitsea Football Club, Crown Avenue, Pitsea SS13 2BE from 6pm.  All of our finalists and sponsors will be there, cheered on and supported by family and friends.  Some mini-quiz rounds will be held between the awards to bring a fun element to the night!   Have you got what it takes to win a prize? #Apprenticeships #Post16 #Essex

Introducing our 2017 Finalists:

Social Media Apprentice of the Year

  • Luke Dove
  • Brandon Messer
  • Kirsty Walker

CompTIA Learner of the Year

  • Billy Brown

    CompTIA runner up 2

    Michael Deeley, CompTIA learner of the year 2016

  • Daniel Cossington
  • Robin Himbury
  • Luke Robinson

Employer of the Year

  • ATL Haulage Contractors
  • Gilbarco Veeder-Root
  • Iceberg Building Services
  • Muston Limited
  • Southend Borough Council

Line Manager of the Year

  • Michaela Baker – Southend Borough Council
  • Richard Bowles – Gable Hall School
  • Audrey Clarke – Brentwood Community Print
  • Andrew Jackson – Alan Blunden & Co.
  • Jack Pearce – Globalnet IT Innovations
  • Vanessa Thompson – Musto Limited

ITEC Learner of the Year

  • George Murphy – Study Programme
  • Suzanne McCrindle – Flex-ITEC programme
  • Shay Puxley – Flex-ITEC programme
  • Jadie Parry – Flex-ITEC programme

IT Apprentice of the Year

  • Daniel Cossington
  • Edward Daniels
  • Michael Deeley
  • Daniel Fisk

    Malcolm Bridges Winner

    Shannon Wayland, ‘Malcolm Bridges’ Award winner 2016

  • Matthew Hall
  • Douglas Martin
  • Liam Parkins

Malcolm Bridges’ Award

  • Joshua Barwick
  • Holly Cossington
  • Jemma Dawson
  • Callum Massey
  • Cara White

 

But whose name will be on each trophy?  Come along and join us to find out!

RSVP to reception@iteclt.co.uk or call Hannah on 01268 286929

National Apprenticeship Week #NAW2017


5 minutes with Tarnya Till who completed a Level 3 Social Media and Digital Marketing Apprenticeship at Billericay IT Solutions with ITEC Learning Technologies between May 2014 and November 2015

Your Apprenticeship Job Title was:- Digital Marketing Assistant

tills

Tarnya and her sister, Kymbly, were ITEC’s first Joint Apprentice of the Year winners in 2016

 

Your Job Title now:- Junior on-line Shop Administrator

What has been the best thing about completing an apprenticeship?

The opportunity to put in place the theory learned and taught during an apprenticeship. This opportunity gave me a greater understanding of how to apply aspects of the framework to real working life, and develop skills and knowledge around adapting digital marketing tools and techniques to real situations.

How do you think an apprenticeship has benefited your career?

The apprenticeship has benefited my career by supplying a deeper understanding of digital

marketing, and how social media platforms can be used to support and provide businesses with effective marketing campaigns. Through completing my apprenticeship I have also gained a huge amount of confidence in my working ability, although this doesn’t directly benefit my career;  instead, it has resulted in me becoming more driven to succeed and become the best I can be.

Would you recommend this route? If yes, why?

I would recommend an apprenticeship as an excellent way to begin your career. After leaving education I had no work experience in IT.   An apprenticeship allowed me to begin my career with an employer who invested their time in me and also sent me on relevant training courses.  When my apprenticeship ended I was offered a job and my career has continued to progress.  I would like to thank ITEC for providing support during and after my apprenticeship – a team of truly lovely people! Thanks for everything!

 

tills-kerry

Tarnya (left) receives her Apprentice of the Year Award 2016 from her Tutor, Kerry (centre).  Her sister, Kymbly (right), was a joint winner.  Kerry said “although their work is very different, they both work to the same exacting standards and I couldn’t separate them”

 

Could this be you? If you want more information on completing an Apprenticeship with ITEC Learning Technologies speak to Toni on 01268 286929 – toni@iteclt.co.uk