The logistics sector has successfully won a place on the next wave of the Trailblazer apprenticeship scheme .

Trailblazer apprenticeships are intended to be simple, accessible courses designed by employers specifically for roles in their business sectors, with funding made directly available to operators for external training purposes.

The initiative was launched following a review of the existing apprenticeship model, which found that the frameworks were too complex and did not reflect the needs of businesses.

A pan-industry group of operators, headed up by Colin Snape, HR manager at Nagel-Langdons, proposed three Level 2 logistics apprenticeship pathways for students to follow - driver; warehouse operative; and operator (which includes traffic office, freight forwarder, import/export clerk). These have now been accepted onto the next phase of the national roll-out of Trailblazer apprenticeships.

Snape told “We are delighted that our group has been successful in phase-three of Trailblazers. We now want to make sure that the new standards are written by the employers within the industry and that they are accessible to small businesses as well.

"We want to design a really concise approach that any logistics business can look at and understand exactly what they need to do to employ an apprentice.”

Current apprenticeship models and funding will end in September 2017, and more than 300 students are already engaged with the new courses within the automotive and utilities sectors.

Snape hopes the logistics-specific apprenticeships will be ready for trial by 2016.

Liz Pridgeon, programme manager - skills, at Skills for Logistics, said: “Employers, working together in groups, will drive the creation of their sector’s apprenticeship frameworks. Any employer in this group can influence the development of the standard and the way it is assessed – for example, by project work or observation.”

The RHA is supporting the initiative and encouraging members to get involved. "This is the chance for the industry to design appropriate apprenticeships that are funded. The more industry involvement we have, the better the bid will be and the greater the chance of success in terms of our funding requirements," a spokeswoman said.

If you would like to find out more and how you can get involved with steering the project, please contact