Creating an apprentice programme to meet industry demands: digital community management

Alastair Irons, Marcia Deakin, Lynne Pitwood, Karolis Svabauskas, Sarah Hinchcliffe-Smith

Research output: Contribution to conferenceOther


This session will explore the opportunities afforded by apprenticeship programmes and how such programmes can future proof the skills of employees and make a significant contribution to your organisation.

In the session we will provide a review of the development and implementation of the Digital Community Manager programme. This is a new programme which was developed in a collaboration between industry and academia to apply the Digital Community Manager apprenticeship standard to the needs of the participant organisations.

You will hear from colleagues representing Nextgen, Ubisoft, Newcastle Building Society and the University of Sunderland. The panel will be joined by one of the apprentices currently studying on the programme. The session will discuss the development process which was based on co-creation, the application of the apprentice standard, the joint delivery of the programme and the impact that the programme has had on the apprentices and the participant organisations.

At this point in time the programme is half way through the first iteration of the Digital Community Manager apprenticeship with the first cohort scheduled to finish in the summer of 2022. As a result of COVID-19 the programme has been delivered online which has provided a series of challenges and opportunities for the apprentices and for the delivery team.

The feedback from the apprentices and their employers has been positive and the quality of work produced so far has been excellent. As well as the off the job sessions (normally all day on Fridays) the apprentices have worked with mentors in their organisations to provide support and guidance. The apprentices also have the opportunity to work shadow – although this has proved an interesting challenge through lockdown.

By the end of the session you will have an appreciation of the programme, the mode of delivery, the development and learning opportunities afforded by the apprentice programme, the impact on the apprentices and the benefits to the participant organisations.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 17 Jun 2021
Externally publishedYes
EventDynamo 21 - Online, United Kingdom
Duration: 17 Jun 202117 Jun 2021


ConferenceDynamo 21
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom


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