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Julie Davison – NW Skills Development Network

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Julie Davison

NW Skills Development Network, Healthcare

The NWSDN is an innovative learning and development network offering development opportunities for staff in Finance, Informatics and Procurement. The Network comprises 98 NHS organisations across the North West supporting a wide range of areas such as Clinical Commissioning Groups, Mental Health, Community and Acute Foundation Trusts providing excellent opportunities for the 8,133 staff employed as well as offering diversity in its placement provision and learning opportunities for apprentices.

Which type of Apprenticeships do you offer?

Business Support – L2 IT Application Specialist
Business Support – L3 Business Administrator
Accounting – L3 Assistant Accountant
Accounting – L7 Accountancy / Taxation Professional
Information – L3 Software Development Technician
IT – L3 Infrastructure Technician

Why did you choose to hire an apprentice?
The Network facilitates an apprenticeship programme across the NW for Network Members.

What benefits has your company seen from hiring apprentices?
Young apprentices in member organisations have been able to develop their knowledge, skills and competency enabling them to effectively undertake a variety of roles, providing valuable input and support to the teams involved and providing a pipeline of talent for organisations.

What is the best piece of advice you would give to someone thinking about becoming or hiring an apprentice?
Don’t underestimate the amount of effort and support required to achieve a successful outcome, both from an apprentice and management perspective, or the value of the training and qualification involved.

Please tell us a positive story regarding apprenticeships that you can share?
An apprentice joined our scheme in 2015 straight from school with a keen interest in IT. She was offered a placement in an Information role at an organisation which was some distance from where she lived undertaking day release training in Liverpool, some 30 miles away. During her first year in post she flourished in the Information team successfully achieving her L2 apprenticeship. She subsequently progressed to a L3 apprenticeship undertaking block release training in Manchester which involved a lengthy journey at each end of every day travelling to and from the training centre. Towards the end of her 12 month programme she successfully secured a permanent position with the organisation going on to not only achieve her L3 apprenticeship but to be supported to undertake a L4.

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