Proposals to develop a new degree-level apprenticeship in Chartered Management have been approved. These will boost the number of professional managers and improve business performance across the UK.

The creation of this new level six Chartered Management Apprenticeship follows a Government announcement made on 12 March that nine new industry-designed degree apprenticeships will be rolled out in areas including chartered surveying and aeronautical engineering.

The new programme will be led by an employer group regulated by international service company Serco and will include organisations such as, Virgin Media, Barchester, One Stop, BBC, the Civil Service, Birmingham City Council, Kinnerton Confectionary and Opus Building services. The work is supported by CMI, the chartered professional body for management and leadership, and the Association of Business schools through its network of Small Business Charter awarded schools and other members.

Lord Young, the Prime Minister’s Enterprise Advisor commented on the new apprenticeship route. He says:

“I’m delighted this Government has supported the development of a proposed degree-level management apprenticeship, which will bring together the very best of higher education and work-based learning. Backed by industry, leading business schools and the professional body, this offers businesses and employers from all sectors a new route for ensuring they have highly skilled managers to help grow their businesses and boost the economy.  This has the potential to transform management education across the UK.”


The development of this new apprenticeship builds on the recommendations of the report “Management 2020: Leadership to Unlock Long-term Growth” (July 2014). This follows an inquiry set up by the All Party Parliamentary Group on Management, which gathered evidence from over 200 employees advising on the management and leadership skills needed for employers of the future. A key recommendation to Ministers was for the apprenticeship to include management, putting more young people on track to professional management careers.

Melanie Nicholson, Serco’s Director of Skills, said:

“Serco is very pleased to be the lead employer developing this new degree-level apprenticeship in management and leadership. We believe this approach provides a focused and targeted framework which fits with what employers and our economy needs and, most importantly, provides a fantastic opportunity that will put far more young people on the track to professional management careers.”

Petra Wilton, Director of Strategy at the Chartered Management Institute (CMI), said:

“This Chartered Apprenticeship offers a ground-breaking new route for raising the UK’s management performance through building the next generation of professional managers.  We are delighted that this brings to life the recommendations from all the employers and many others who contributed to last year’s Commission of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Management. From across our networks, we have over 120 employers already expressing interest in these new apprenticeships, showing that there is a huge appetite for raising management standards.  We now look forward to working with Serco, and the many leading employers and business schools who really appreciate what good management and leadership delivers and are all committed to making a difference to management as a profession.”

The UK needs more professional management skills in order to help business growth, currently there is no clear national programmes to meet this need. At an individual level, large organisations can afford to develop tailored solutions working alongside existing providers, however this rarely meets the needs of small and medium-sized enterprises. On a national scale, CMI reveals that poor management and leadership costs the UK economy over £19 billion a year, 64 percent of employers think that a lack of management skills is holding back growth, 43 percent of UK managers rate their own line manager as ineffective, and only one in five are qualified and incompetence or bad management causes 56 percent of business failures.

Anne Kiem, Chief Executive, at the ABS, said:

“We believe this will be a game changing initiative for management education in the UK. By providing access to world class business schools, school leavers will have the opportunity to develop their management capabilities to a high level, and existing employees will be able to accelerate their pathway to management. Our members, including many who hold the Small Business Charter award, are incredibly well placed to collaborate with employers to integrate academic learning at degree level with on-the-job practical training. Through working with employers business schools will create an Apprenticeship genuinely responsive to employers needs and will deliver the next generation of managers to support the growth and competitiveness of our economy for years to come.”

In terms of solutions, research carried out by CMI, Association of Business Schools and the Quality Assurance Agency (QAA) showed that 89 percent of employers believe that embedding work experience within courses would make students more employable, 75 percent of employers seek professional qualifications to provide evidence of practical skills and new research from across 500 Chartered Managers reveals that on average they deliver over £390K of added value to their organisation.