The introduction of an apprenticeship standard for fleet is being investigated by the Association of Fleet Professionals.
In response to demand from the members and the wider industry, the organisation has been looking into the process involved in the creation of an apprenticeship standard and is now inviting feedback from across the sector to gauge enthusiasm.
Paul Hollick, chair, said, “The creation of a vehicle fleet apprenticeship standard could potentially be a huge boost to the industry and help further with formally professionalising roles within our sector. It is an idea with significant appeal.
“However, the size of the task and degree of industry support required should not be underestimated. We at The AFP have the energy and commitment to support employers to drive this forward but the creation of a vehicle fleet apprenticeship programme would need widespread commitment to ensure its success.”
A key part in receiving approval for an official apprenticeship standard requires commitment from a number of companies that they would take on apprentices in order to prove the need and viability for its introduction.
Paul added,“There are many steps in the creation of the apprenticeship but the one crucial to its success is to prove there is a need. This requires what is referred to as a ‘trailblazing group’ of 10-20 experienced fleet employers who will be instrumental in helping to develop the apprenticeship standard and employ apprentices in the first year of the programme.
“This is very much a question of employers putting their money where their mouths are and there would need to be a cohort of businesses willing to both create jobs and put in place all of the support resources and mechanisms that apprentices need.”
However, Paul said, the advantages of an apprenticeship scheme for vehicle fleets were numerous and obvious.
“While there are many highly qualified and capable fleet managers in our sector, supported by training and qualifications available through the AFP Fleet Academy, this is not a profession with a recognised entry route. Having apprenticeships would change that and provide much more of a structured career path into the fleet sector.
“In the future, especially as fleet managers continue to evolve into mobility specialists, an apprenticeship could eventually sit alongside career choices in other corporate specialisms such as human resources and procurement, providing a steady stream of talented individuals.”