Thursday, 28 July 2016 22:29

Express manager Degree apprenticeship submitted to BIS.

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Express Trailblazer polished for BIS - Carl Lomas MBE Sec to trailblazer group, Justin Moore, Chair & CitySprint director, IOC President Lord Falkland and Professor Tracey Worth Express Trailblazer polished for BIS - Carl Lomas MBE Sec to trailblazer group, Justin Moore, Chair & CitySprint director, IOC President Lord Falkland and Professor Tracey Worth

Trailblazer standard in Express Delivery Management at degree apprenticeship level submitted to BIS by Justin Moore and the Institute of Couriers.

A degree apprenticeship for managers in the evolving e-retail final mile has been submitted to BIS (July 28), polishing touches were added to the BIS submission at the recent Heads of Industry meeting of the Institute of Couriers, (July 13), aligned with the Universities of Derby and West London to cover the hot spots of the exploding sector numbers in final mile. The degree level goes alongside the existing level two for express delivery and provides a strong platform for employers approaching levy in April 2017.

Justin Moore comments,

I have written to BIS as the employer chairman of the development group for express delivery services occupations with an expression of interest for the July deadline for a degree apprenticeship in Express management. This group has already completed work to develop the Level 2 standard for Express Delivery Services. The Standard will cover the role of “Express Delivery Manager”.  These individuals are responsible for the planning and management of activities related to delivery of goods and packages, largely driven by on-line e-retailing.  Demand for these skills is already high and growing and these are crucial and senior roles in my and other express delivery businesses...

...The occupation that the BIS Express delivery group would like to develop an apprenticeship standard for is:

Express Delivery Management, level six.

Express Delivery Managers operate in the technology-led, fast-paced, 24/7 world of Express Deliveries.  This is a new and dynamic business sector where few organisations have their roots in traditional transport, warehousing and distribution operations.  The skillsets needed are those of real time business planning and time-critical decision making. The dramatic growth of online shopping in the UK,  driven by the proliferation of smart phones and tablets has fuelled new van registrations to record levels and led to an explosion of express delivery services throughout the UK that are tracked in real time. Supported by sophisticated technology platforms this is a fast-evolving sector with its own infrastructure of million-foot automated sortation sheds interlinked by the hub and spoke route networks required to achieve same and next day delivery. Business evolution reflects the rapidly developing technology, with a number of fast growing new entrants alongside businesses which have transformed their operations and skills profile to meet the challenges of internet-based retailing.

The Express Delivery environment is one where business skills and industry knowledge are used to balance dynamic customer demands with the capital and human resources in their business.   Customers have service level agreements which needs to be met on a 24/7 basis as incoming jobs are allocated to the sortation process and the people and vehicles available while the overall performance of the delivery network is maximised. Express Delivery Managers decisions are educated by real time IT systems and data regarding previous performance which need to be interrogated and analysed and used in work allocation.

They are responsible for fulfilling the promises of multi-channel retailers, whether the business is driven by retail purchase from a store, online or a catalogue and requires home delivery or delivery to a collection point (click and collect).  Thus in an express environment, consignment delivery is completed next day and often the same day.   Goods come into the ‘hub’ and are rapidly sorted and despatched.  Express Delivery Managers understand and have experience of goods identification and sortation systems and the practical and regulatory implications of handling specific types of good, such as food items, pharmaceuticals and dangerous goods.

They need business development skills to identify emerging client demands and develop innovative responses to requirements such as Sunday delivery, late cut off, changing locations of retail supplier to hub network and serving ‘out of range’ delivery locations from Scottish Isles to Channel Islands.

A specific challenge is the management of returned goods.  These need to be assessed for any damage and then allocated as fit to go back into the outward delivery process or sent to a third party for repair, re-cycling or disposal.

Express Delivery Managers are responsible for compliance of express delivery vehicles with national and local regulations and restrictions, such as Health & Safety, driver’s hours and the London-specific congestion and low emissions zones. They need to be aware of how innovative transport and ‘final mile solutions’ using alternative-fuelled vehicles might apply to their operations and implement these when they are adopted. In many express delivery businesses, some or all of the drivers are self-employed and the Express Delivery Manager is responsible to ensure adequate driver resources are available to the business at all times.

We consider that this occupation will require rigorous and substantial training of at least 36 months to achieve full competence, 20% of which will be off-the-job training in the form of the teaching programme at universities offer the degree in Express Logistics Management.  This is based on my discussions with University of Derby and University of West London who wish to work with us to develop the degree programme.

Following discussions with universities, we wish to follow the first option for Degree Apprenticeship development outlined by BIS.

• Employers, universities and professional bodies can come together to co-design a fully-integrated degree course specifically for apprentices, which delivers and tests both academic learning and on-the-job training.

We are committed to ensuring that the standard we design provides sufficiently transferable skills to enable a successful apprentice to perform this role in an employer of any size, nationally and/or in any geographic region.

We are very representative of our sector(s) and are willing to work with other employers who come forward with an interest in this occupation and with colleagues from other sectors where our standards are closely related.

We will develop the apprenticeship standard and assessment plan in line with the latest edition of the “Guidance for Trailblazers – from standards to starts, December 2015”, will aim to complete this process within a year and will ensure that the resulting standard represents good value for money for the end-users. We have reviewed the standards that have already been developed and those in development and are satisfied that there is no duplication with our bid. We have spoken to the Supply Chain Group regarding their plans for Higher Level Apprenticeships (Level 3 and above) and are content that our plans deal with a different and more specific job role.

My company and all the employers listed below as supporters of this bid fully intend to make use of the standard once it is ready for delivery. Projected annual starts for the standard we are bidding to develop by each group member are detailed in the table overleaf.

We are working with The MOD and Institute of Couriers who set the professional standards for this sector and we have invited representatives from those Local Enterprise Partnerships who have identified logistics as a priority, and in particular, the East Midlands M1 corridor LEPs; D2N2, LLEP, NLEP, SEMLEP where Express Delivery Services are of particular and growing significance to their locality.

We have discussed our plans with training providers through the Associaton of Employment and Learning Providers and with sector specialist training providers. Assuming the development process runs smoothly, we envisage the resulting degree apprenticeships being ready to deliver starts from September 2017 with an annual take-up of 1,500 starts across the whole Express Services sector.

We envisage most Trailblazer meetings taking place taking place between London and in the East Midlands as the major employers have operations there as described above.

If the standard is selected for development at this stage:

    I am happy for my organisation, CitySprint to be publically named as the lead employer and the companies listed below are happy to be named as working together to deliver this.

    I am content for Carl Lomas MBE, chair of the Institute of Couriers to be used on the website as the contact point for enquiries in relation to the Trailblazer.

    I commit the Group to working with relevant sector organisations to promote the use of the resulting standard once it is ready for delivery.

Yours sincerely, Justin Moore


Members of the express employer group fromed in BIS phase two of Trailblazer include:-

APC, CEVA, Delivered, DHL, DPD. DX. Eagle Couriers, FedEx, GLH, GSG, Hermes, Maritime, Office Depot, Royal mail, Rush Couriers, Swift Group, TNT, UK Mail, XPO, supported by the Institute of Couriers & Universities of Derby and West London.