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)


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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:

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:

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


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.


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


 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.



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.


Employer of the Year

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



IT Apprentice of the Year

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


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.


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


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 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 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


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!



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 –

National Apprenticeship Week #NAW2017

5 minutes with Caius Ajiz who completed a Level 3 IT Professional Apprenticeship at Chelmsford City Council with ITEC Learning Technologies between February 2013 and November 2014

Your Apprenticeship Job Title was:- ICT Apprentice

Caius Ajiz CMS Sally and Ian close up landscape

Caius was ITEC’s Advanced Apprentice of the Year 2014

Your Job Title now:- Technical Analyst

What has been the best thing about completing an apprenticeship?

Learning as I go and on-the-job in a ‘live’ environment.   Doing this allowed me to see how a typical enterprise was set up and how a workplace (more specifically an office space) works with the people and inter-personal skills.  Work experience is something that must be experienced to fully appreciate how to conduct oneself in an office.  Progressing and building my skills to a high level, mainly because of the people I was working with.  My colleagues are all very good at their jobs, being able to have them show me how systems work, with them explaining as we went allowed me to gain well-rounded knowledge.

How do you think an apprenticeship has benefited your career?

An apprenticeship has set me up with a good employer.  One that seems to genuinely care about its staff and makes sure that they continue to learn and progress as people.   It has given me experience of the work place and how people interact.  It has given me the necessary qualifications to make it into an infrastructure level position.  My position gives me access to enterprise level hardware and software, and allows me to exercise my knowledge every day.

Would you recommend this route? If yes, why?

An apprenticeship is an excellent path to take for someone who is highly driven, willing to learn and adaptable.  People who possess these qualities do extremely well in apprenticeships and make excellent technicians.

Caius and Brother

Caius won 2 awards at ITEC’s 2014 Awards Ceremony (pictured here with his brother)

Could this be you? If you want more information on completing an Apprenticeship with ITEC Learning Technologies speak to Toni on 01268 286929 –

National Apprenticeship Week 2017 #NAW2017

5 minutes with Stacey Hall who completed a Level 2 and Level 3 IT Professional Apprenticeship at The Gateway Academy with ITEC Learning Technologies between June 2010 and March 2013

#NAW2017 #Apprenticeships #Essex

Your Apprenticeship Job Title was:- ICT Apprentice

Stacey Brenchley

Stacey Hall, ITEC’s 2011 IT Apprentice of the Year

Your Job Title now:- Senior IT Support Technician

What has been the best thing about completing an apprenticeship?

Knowing that all the work I put into my apprenticeship, both theoretical and practical, has got me where I am today. The support and teaching from my tutors at ITEC were great, but I know that without my own hard work, I wouldn’t have the multiple professional qualifications I have now.  Although I work in the same place I did at the time of my apprenticeship (by choice), I have moved up and been promoted twice.

How do you think an apprenticeship has benefited your career?

My apprenticeship has benefited me from the beginning by allowing me to make my own choices and gave me personal, social and professional skills.   My confidence would not be where it is today without being in a working environment from the start or without ITEC and the support given.   I am working in a predominantly male-orientated environment but I have been encouraged and supported all the way by both my employer and ITEC.  I am still proud of my ITEC ‘IT Apprentice of the Year’ award from 2011.

Would you recommend this route? If yes, why?

Yes. I was able to study and work in the field of my choice.  Along with theoretical studies from my tutors at ITEC, my practical studies at work really opened my eyes about the career I was stepping into. I knew that, unlike University, if my apprenticeship wasn’t working out or it wasn’t what I thought it would be, I could change paths or end the course and not be left with a huge debt or the obligatory feeling that I needed to continue. I’m glad to say, I never had these thoughts as the process of getting me onto the course was well executed and suited to me, ITEC gave me reassurance that everything was in my hands.

Stacey and mum

Stacey with her Mum receiving her ITEC IT Apprentice of the Year Award 2011

Could this be you? If you want more information on completing an Apprenticeship with ITEC Learning Technologies speak to Toni on 01268 286929 –

National Apprenticeship Week 2017 #NAW2017

5 minutes with George Donovan who completed a Level 2 and Level 3 Business Administration Apprenticeship at Gilbarco Veeder-Root, Basildon, with ITEC Learning Technologies between June 2014 and July 2016

#Apprenticeships #NAW2017 #Essex

Your Apprenticeship Job Title was:- HSE Administrator


George receiving his ‘Malcolm Bridges’ Award in June 2015

Your Job Title now:- Health & Safety Co-Coordinator

What has been the best thing about completing an apprenticeship?

The best thing about completing my apprenticeship was that I secured a full-time job with Gilbarco Veeder-Root in a very well-established industry. It has allowed me to understand why businesses do certain things and how they are run.  I completed both the Level 2 and Level 3 Apprenticeship and now hold qualifications that are relevant to my job role.

How do you think an apprenticeship has benefited your career?

This has benefited me because I had no idea what I wanted to do in regards to a career when I left school.  Now I can develop my administration career and go in to office management.

Would you recommend an Apprenticeship? If yes, why?

Yes, I’d recommend this course because it gives the apprentice the opportunity to not only earn money whilst learning but also the qualifications that are relevant to the industry.  You also get to see the overall view of how a business runs and what to expect from a full-time job, if you are offered one at the end of the programme.


During his apprenticeship, George achieved the ‘Malcolm Bridges’ Award at the ITEC’s 2015 annual awards ceremony for going the extra mile to attain achievement.

Could this be you? If you want more information on completing an Apprenticeship with ITEC Learning Technologies speak to Toni on 01268 286929 –


George with his team from Gilbarco Veeder-Root celebrating his win at our 2015 awards ceremony


ITEC Awards 2017


Yes, it’s that time of the year again when we are planning to recognise and rewards our current stars either on ITEC’s programmes or for supporting learners on their ITEC programmes.

This year our Awards Evening will be held at the Bowers & Pitsea Football Club on Thursday 18th May 2017, 6pm to 9pm.   There will be a complimentary buffet available from 6.15pm with the awards ceremony commencing at 7pm.  Drinks will be available to purchase from the club bar.    We’re also going to set a mini-quiz challenge for each table to enter with a prize for the winners.

Admin winner 3

Our 2016 Admin Apprentice winner, Kirsty Walker (right) with ATL Haulage’s Zena Haydon

Nominations are invited for the following categories:

  • Adult Learner of the Year – Awarded for outstanding achievement and effort for over 19 year olds undertaking a part-time course with ITEC (non-apprenticeship courses)
  • Employer of the Year – Awarded for outstanding development and support of learners at work
  • Line Manager of the Year – Awarded for outstanding support of learners at work
  • ITEC Staff Member of the Year – Awarded for providing excellent customer service to learners, staff and employers
  • Business Admin Apprentice of the Year – Awarded for outstanding achievement by an
  • apprentice undertaking a Business Administration, Using IT or Customer Service apprenticeship
  • IT Apprentice of the Year – Awarded for outstanding achievement by an apprentice
  • undertaking an IT Professional apprenticeship
  • Social Media Apprentice of the Year – Awarded for outstanding achievement by an
  • apprentice undertaking the Social Media apprenticeship
  • CompTIA learner of the Year – A special award recognising the effort and achievement of learners undertaking CompTIA exams as part of their coursework
  • The ‘Malcolm Bridges’ Award – This award is to recognise the achievement and effort of a learner who has overcome barriers or difficulties or gone the extra mile to achieve the outcomes on his/her course

Do you know a shining star who deserves one of our awards?   Nominate them now.  Go to:

Social Media runner up 3

Our 2016 Social Media runner-up, Leone Murungah, with Mayor David Harrison

We are looking for sponsors for our awards so if you would like to see your company name and logo on the winners’ trophies, in our awards brochure, on the finalists’ certificates and in the event write-up in the local press, please contact Kirk or Toni to discuss further on 01268 286929 or email;

Come along and join us, Thursday 18th May 2017 6pm at the Bowers & Pitsea Football Club, Crown Avenue, Basildon SS13 2BE – See you there!