What is an apprenticeship?

An apprenticeship is a vocational education programme designed by companies. The training is delivered as a collaboration between the employer and the training provider, comprising of on-the-job and off-the-job training over a set period of time.

Apprenticeships are for new employees and also upskilling or reskilling existing employees.

Upon successful completion, a nationally recognised vocational qualification is obtained. In some cases, other qualifications, certifications and even additional English, Maths and ICT, where it is beneficial or needed, are also obtained.

For more information on the delivery and assessment of apprenticeships, please visit the ‘Apprenticeships’ section and open the .pdf documents.

Who is The Apprentice and Training Partnership (The ATP)?

The ATP is an apprenticeship training provider that focuses technology apprenticeships including IT, Infrastructure, Software, Business Analysis, Data Analysis and Cyber Security.

We work with all types of organisation and sectors throughout England. The largest employer we provide to has over 100,000 employees and our smallest employer has just two, including the apprentice!

We provide outstanding apprenticeships, whether you are seeking to launch your career in one of these specialist areas, improve your skills, or even change career direction entirely.


What do apprentices get paid?

One of the main benefits of choosing an apprenticeship is that they are fully employed and paid positions. The amount you get paid can depend on your age, existing qualifications, the exact type and level of apprenticeship, employer and location. Employers understand that in order to get good apprentices they need to offer competitive market salaries.

As a guide, apprentices typically earn around the National Living Wage set by the Government. However, the best way to determine salaries is to go to Find an apprenticeship – GOV.UK ( and look at the actual salaries relevant apprenticeship vacancies are being advertised at.

How is the training delivered?

Since our inception, being a technology specific training provider, we have focused on delivering exceptional apprenticeships via a live, virtual delivery model.

Live virtual teaching is an approach where the entire curriculum, teaching methods, and resources are specifically chosen, sequenced, and refined for virtual learning. Live virtual learning, when done well, is not simply providing a teacher-led classroom session over the internet. It is much more sophisticated than that.

The maximum classroom size is 12 in order to provide the optimum ratio of trainer to apprentices. This helps to ensure the apprentices’ attention, collaboration in groups and involvement in discussion is free flowing and not overcrowded. It also enables the trainer to easily identify and support any who need extra attention and to identify, stretch and challenge any who are excelling.

Sessions comprise of individual and group activities, along with the use of technical labs and interactive illustrations. We teach the latest industry relevant concepts, along with the how to use the most common tools and platforms which the apprentices get to fully interact and practice with.

Teaching sessions are no more than 2 hours in duration and are scheduled weekly so that  attention span through the delivery medium is fully optimised. This approach cultivates faster vocational development and better knowledge retention because skills are often then practiced on the job between lessons. As a comparison, block training can stifle vocational development during the block training periods and hinder retention of the new knowledge gained throughout a block if the new knowledge isn’t practiced very soon after it is taught. Our approach also allows for relevant work-based problems to be brought to the next session and discussed to further build on vocational knowledge and skills in problem solving, which builds applied skills alongside the academic development.

Apprentices are able to see real-time development and can employers often increase an apprentice’s responsibility in line with their developing knowledge and skills.

Off-the-Job training tasks are set weekly to consolidate the subject matter taught in lessons and/or to research in preparation for the next session of teaching.

The approach is proven to help ensure first time understanding and long-term retention of information – it goes in and stays in!

How long do the ATP’s apprenticeships take?

All of the Level 3 apprenticeships we provide are set over 18 months for full time employees. The Level  4 apprenticeships are set over 24 months, with the exception of the Business Analyst which is 18 months.

For apprentices starting at Level 3 and progressing to Level 4, the total duration can be three to three and a half years, however you can have a break in between if you wish.

We have found that our particular apprenticeships are rare for part-time employees, however if a part time apprenticeship is required, the duration would be extended to reflect the specific working pattern of the apprentice.

What do the apprenticeship levels mean?

Your chosen career path, previous qualifications, training or vocational experience typically determines which level of apprenticeship you take. The higher the level, the more complex and challenging the subject matter is. The pace and content will also change accordingly.

Many employers offer progression from one level to another.

There are academic equivalents to the knowledge taught in an apprenticeship, however vocational training has the huge advantage of the vocational experience.

Try to see it like this:

A Level 3 IT apprenticeship is the academic equivalent to 2-3 A-Levels, depending on whether you gain a Pass, Merit or Distinction grade. However, you will also receive a minimum of 18 months work-based experience. This work-based experience would place you well ahead of an equivalent learner who gained A-Levels without the work-based experience.   

A Level 4 apprenticeship is the academic equivalent to an HNC, Diploma or First Year Bachelor’s Degree, but the value of the work-based experience over the 18 – 24 minimum is huge!  

A Level 5 apprenticeship is the academic equivalent to the 2nd year of Bachelor’s Degree, a Level 6 apprenticeship equivalent to a Bachelor’s Degree with Honours and a Level 7 apprenticeship equivalent to a Masters Degree.

All other forms of education are fantastic in and of themselves, however an apprenticeship has the key advantages of vocational experience, a salary and no debt arising from cost of the education.   

Who can do undertake an apprenticeship?

The entry criteria is straightforward:

  • Over 16 years of age (there is no upper age limit)
  • Eligible to live and work in England
  • Be employed/secure employment with a company providing the apprenticeship as part of their employment provision to you
  • Not already be undertaking full time education

The only remaining qualifying criteria is that you must be able to gain significant new skills and knowledge from undertaking the programme.

How do I apply for an apprenticeship?

It depends on whether you are looking for new employment with an apprenticeship or if you hope to undertake an apprenticeship with your current employer.

Seeking new employment?

Along with the Find an apprenticeship – GOV.UK (, there are numerous other websites around that advertise apprenticeships for a wide range of employers.

Whilst the ATP is the chosen technology training provider for many fantastic employers in England, we don’t provide apprenticeships to every single one of them. So, the best way to seek out an apprenticeship is to go to the GOV.UK website above, and also to use a search engine to find other websites that advertise apprenticeships. Search for apprenticeships that will best meet your requirements and apply with your CV along with a covering message. Also, check out how the training provider delivers the apprenticeship and what is included to make sure that works well for you also.

Already employed?

The first port of call is to speak to your employer, typically it would be a member of your company’s Learning and Development, HR team or your line manager.

If you have seen an apprenticeship on our website that you would like to pursue, please feel free to download the brochure and approach your employer to ask them if you can do the apprenticeship. If your employer is happy for you to move forward, then please contact us and we would be happy to help and advise you and/or your employer on the next steps.

Level 4 Associate Project Manager Learner, Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust

I am really enjoying the course and I actually love it! People think there is a lot to learn but it’s really enjoyable. The beauty of this is you do it when at work and it is flexible, the people are also so helpful! I couldn’t ask for better people to help support me. I get so much opportunity for work shadowing that I am learning how the theory is applied to real life.

Vocational Apprenticeship Centre Manager, Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust

I have been particularly happy with the relationship that has been built through constant communication and support from ATP staff. Successful outcomes are dependent on a good relationship between apprentice, employer and provider so we really value the commitment the ATP has put in to develop this excellent working relationship.
This collaborative style of working has extended to our own apprenticeship provision, with the ATP acting very much as a critical friend offering advice and guidance for our development team even when the advisory input does not directly help to further their reach with their own programmes.


Our Values



Our commitment to delivering our services with honest, ethical & moral principles with complete transparency.


By putting our employers and learners at the heart of what we do attracts fruitful long-term relationships and the desired outcomes for learners.


Going the extra mile, thinking outside the box & taking responsibility to ensure customers get what they need.


ATP people love what they do & this shows in their results.


The ATP recruits & trains highly capable & committed educators & provides them with the very best in support, tools and resources


 Our commitment to delivering our services with honest, ethical & moral principles with complete transparency.


By putting our employers and their learners at the heart of what we do attracts fruitful long-term relationships and the desired outcomes for learners.


 Going the extra mile, thinking outside the box & taking responsibility to ensure customers get what they need.


 ATP people love what they do & this shows in their results.


The ATP recruits & trains highly capable & committed people & provides them with the very best in resources to facilitate to deliver.

The ATP is a provider of apprenticeships in the following categories; Technology, Digital, Data and Business Analysis.

© 2021 The ATP

Contact Us

Altrincham Road
Wilmslow Cheshire
SK9 4LY 

The ATP is a provider of ‘Full Option Apprenticeships’ in the following categories; Technology, Analysis, Projects and Leadership.

© 2021 The ATP





Contact Us

Altrincham Road
Wilmslow Cheshire
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