Electrical contractors are being urged to give their views on a revised standard for electrotechnical apprentices.

Following a government review of apprenticeships in 2013, the electrotechnical apprenticeship is currently being assessed by industry employers to ensure it meets their needs and provides learners with the right level of competence.

A revised standard, drawn up by a group of industry employers and led by the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET), has been drafted and is currently up for consultation to allow the wider industry to view the recommendations and comment on their suitability.

Michelle Richmond, IET director of Membership and Professional Development, said, “The Trailblazers initiative is a real step forward for apprenticeships because it means that a range of engineering sectors will have simplified apprenticeship standards and the assessment approaches that sit alongside them.

“Professional bodies like the IET will play a crucial role in Trailblazers to ensure that achieving an apprenticeship signifies that an individual is ready to secure professional registration, such as engineering technician or ICT technician where that is available.”

Participants are being invited to comment on areas such as:

• Length of apprenticeship
• What an apprentice should be able to do at the end of the apprenticeship
• Specific knowledge and skills apprentices need to gain during the training programme.

The consultation takes the form of a ten minute online survey to complete after reviewing the two-page revised standard.

“It’s essential that employers take a look at the new standard to see what it involves,” said Paul McNaughton, managing director of Oxford-based electrical contractor Darke and Taylor. “If you employ apprentices, or are thinking about employing apprentices, this new standard will have an impact on your business. A few minutes now could make all the difference to your future workforce.”

The aim of the apprenticeships trailblazer is to put employers in the driving seat with a clearer focus on rigorous training for learners and simplicity of use for large and small employers so that apprenticeships can respond better to the needs of the economy.

The consultation closes on Monday 3rd February. To view the revised standard and have your say, visit www.theiet.org/trailblazers.