End-Point Assessment - Lessons learned

Sara Hall, Head of NCFE Apprenticeship Services

NCFE became an End-Point Assessment Organisation (EPAO) in 2017 and has since been approved to deliver 22 standards. End-point assessment (EPA) signifies one of the biggest apprenticeship reforms in recent times and stems from the 2013 government-commissioned Richard Review into apprenticeships. The findings called for an end to continuous assessment in favour of an external assessment that more accurately reflects a learner’s capabilities and readiness for a particular role. What’s more, the independent nature of the assessment is designed to ensure that skills are transferable across different organisations and respected industry-wide.

It’s now over a year since our first apprentices entered the programme, so we wanted to share with you some lessons we’ve learned from an EPAO perspective.

Winning customers

We’ve learned that being a successful EPAO isn’t about signing up as many organisations as possible, it’s about working in partnerships with the right organisations to support successful outcomes. Working together is so important when navigating a new system and landscape as we’re doing with EPA and it’s vital that we work together in order to achieve the best for our learners.

Developing products

When developing our products, we’ve found again that volume isn’t the winning factor, its quality that is key. Developing EPA for as many standards as possible may look good in the short term but to achieve longevity and make the products work for learners, we ensure that we identify appropriate products to develop and do the right things well.

Understanding customers

Working with our customers and understanding their needs are paramount. We are constantly evolving to meet the needs of our customers and believe that keeping lines of communication continually open creates greater visibility and enables us to deliver better proactive support and capacity planning.

Delivering End-Point Assessment

We believe that our focus is right where it should be when delivering EPA. Our attention is always first and foremost on the continuity and consistency of our products and services. We’ve made a commitment to our customers and our learners to go through a very significant journey with them and keeping that at the forefront of why we do what we do is what makes us successful, and leads to the success of our learners.

We’re the first to admit that we still don’t know it all and are always striving to learn more as we move through this new landscape of EPA and we’ll continue to share our journey with you each step of the way.

You can find more about our End-Point Assessment offer here.