Non-Executive Board Members, Institute for Apprenticeships & Technical Education

Body: Institute for Apprenticeships & Technical Education
Appointing Department: Department for Education
Sectors: Business, Finance & Skills, Education
Location: London, Coventry and other locations as required.
Number of Vacancies: Up to 4
Remuneration: A fee of £15,000 a year is payable. Reasonable expenses properly and necessarily incurred will be reimbursed in line with the Institute’s expenses policy.
Time Requirements: Members spend 2 days a month carrying out board duties, including attending board meetings, and must be prepared to be flexible about how these 2 days are used. For example, board activities may amount to more than 2 days in one month and less in another.

Campaign Timeline

  • Competition Launched


  • Closed for Applications

    deadline extended from 1/10 to 8/10

  • Panel Sift

    final sift 10/12/2021

  • Final Interview Date

    4th February & 11th February 2022

  • Announcement

    March 2022


Assessment Panel

  • John Edwards

    Panel Chair

    Interim Chief Executive of the Education and Skills and Funding Agency • Departmental Official

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  • Peter Lauener

    Chair, Construction Industry Training Board • Independent Member

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  • Baroness Ruby McGregor-Smith CBE

    Chair of the Institute for Apprenticeships & Technical Education (appointee to be confirmed) • Representative of Organisation

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Vacancy Description

The Government’s apprenticeships reform programme is now established and has seen employers take ownership of determining the skills and competencies that they need their apprentices to achieve to best serve their business. The first T Levels are being delivered since September 2020 to provide a high-quality technical option for young people aged 16 to 19.

The Institute was established as a Crown Non-Departmental Public Body, independent of Government and employer-led with a mandate set by Ministers. The Institute is playing a vital role in continuing the apprenticeship and technical education reform process and works on behalf of employers to support the delivery of high quality apprenticeships and T Levels in England. The Institute enables apprentices or learners to be confident that their apprenticeship or T Level is of high quality, respected and will help them to build a career with a clear market value. It supports employers across the full range of the economy in every sector, from agriculture to digital, engineering and health.

The Institute:

• Acts as the ultimate decision maker on approving apprenticeship standards and assessment plans to ensure they are of high quality, sufficiently stretching and kept occupationally relevant, with employer backing.

• Advises on the maximum level of government funding available for those standards, so that they represent good value for money.

• Is responsible for Technical Qualifications, which are the main, classroom-based element of the T Level.

• Approves Higher Technical Qualifications which are aligned to the employer-designed standards.

•Maintains the occupational maps which underpin all technical education.

Subject to parliamentary approval, the Institute will also be able to approve a broader range of technical education qualifications as set out in the post-16 qualifications review and in the Skills for Jobs White Paper, ensuring that the majority of technical education is linked to employer-led standards by 2030.

The Institute’s Board has a diverse range of experience and is primarily made up of employers, education and business leaders. The Institute currently employs 220 people, based mainly across two sites in London and Coventry.

The Institute’s Board ensures that effective arrangements are in place to provide assurance on risk management, governance and internal control.

In particular, the Board has collective responsibility for establishing and taking forward the strategic direction of the Institute, having regard to the Strategic Guidance issued to the Institute by the Government each year.

• Board members must assure that the Institute develops high-quality apprenticeships and technical qualifications, so they are viewed and respected as highly as other education routes. In driving forward this ambition, Board members will develop and manage effective relationships with senior stakeholders, be a visible authoritative presence on the public stage when necessary, be a credible figure with employers and a champion for apprentices and technical education.

• Board members must always observe the highest standards of probity, impartiality, integrity and objectivity, ensuring that high standards of corporate governance are always observed.

• Board members operate on the principles of collective responsibility, support and respect. Members are provided with all information necessary to ensure vigorous debate and effective decision-making. Members may request any additional information they deem necessary to ensure that the decision-making process is sufficiently well informed and robust.

• Board members should speak with one voice in public on Institute matters. Board members should not make press or public statements in respect of the Institute’s affairs without the permission of the Chair (or, in the absence of the Chair, the Chief Executive). Briefing and assistance for Board members making public statements is provided.

• Decisions of the Board are normally reached by consensus and only in exceptional circumstances should a formal vote be necessary. All decisions of the Board are recorded. Minority views are not normally made public although, if a vote is necessary, the outcome of that vote is  recorded in the Board minutes.

• If a Board member resigns because of a disagreement with a Board decision, they may state the basis for the disagreement but may not publicly disclose the views of other Board members.

• There is an expectation that Board members will serve on at least one Board Committee.

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Person Specification

Candidates will be proven strategic thinkers able to contribute across a range of governance, policy and financial matters relating to apprenticeships, skills and technical education. The role involves developing and managing effective relationships with senior stakeholders including employers in the private and public sectors, Ministers and leaders of employer representative groups, seeking to bring them on board and win their commitment to the functions of the Institute.

Candidates will need the personal strength and integrity to maintain the independence of the Institute whilst at the same time ensuring it delivers the government’s aims and holding it to account for delivery.

The Institute works directly with employers to set standards for apprenticeships and technical education, and so it is important that its board membership supports that mission. Applications are therefore particularly welcome from current senior business or public sector employers whose organisations recruit through a range of entry routes and who employ a significant number of apprentices.

Candidates will have a good understanding of the government’s apprenticeship and technical education reforms, and the challenges and opportunities faced by businesses following the technical education reforms. Candidates will have a proven commitment to maintaining high standards, as well as being committed to diversity and social mobility and helping people from all backgrounds to get the skills they need.

We particularly welcome applications from under-represented groups, those based outside London and the South-East and applicants who have achieved success through non-traditional educational routes.



A successful candidate will meet the following essential criteria:

  • Exceptional leadership skills, with experience of working at board level;
  • A proven track record of commanding respect from employers, both big and small, at a senior level, and an understanding of the challenges that employers face;
  • A sound understanding of the central role in apprenticeships and technical education that the government expects the Institute to play, and a passion and determination for it to succeed in this role, and for delivering for employers and learners.
  • For at least one candidate: Proven financial skills that will support the Institute’s financial capability at board level and its work on securing value for money in the apprenticeships and technical education programmes.

Applicants will be assessed against these criteria in their application form and at any subsequent interview. In the event that we receive a large number of applications, those which do not clearly demonstrate exceptional leadership skills with experience of working at board level, will be rejected at the first sift stage.

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Additional Information

Appointments are for 3 to 5 years.

You can find further information about the Institute in the candidate pack and on its website:

Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education

IFATE candidate pack
Candidate Application Form
Public Appointments Privacy Notice
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