Intellectual Property Office: Large Employer of the Year

The Intellectual Property Office in Newport faced a problem recruiting IT professionals fast enough to deal with the amount of change at the organisation. The solution was to develop a dedicated apprenticeship programme, capable of recruiting, training and retaining young people with IT and other required skills. Apprenticeship frameworks in Business Administration Level 2 and 3, Finance AAT Level 2 and 3, and IT and Telecoms Professional Level 3 are being delivered by training provider Acorn Learning Solutions.

The programme was launched in 2014, and since then 32 apprentices have been recruited, with 19 currently employed by the organisation.  All the apprentices who have completed the programme have gone on to secure permanent roles either at the IPO, with other government departments, or in the private sector.

Employing more than 1,150 people, mainly in Newport, the IPO also focuses on supporting local youth employment and works with local colleges and schools when recruiting. It plans to take on 20 apprentices this autumn.

Louise Wheten of Acorn Learning Solutions, said: “Our vision with IPO is to continue to further develop and expand the apprenticeship programmes."