HR Supplier Manager - Apprenticeships


Manchester M1 2WD, Nottingham NG16HJ, Sheffield S1 2FJ,Darlington DL1 5QE,



Are you passionate about the value of apprenticeships to develop workforce skills and build a talented workforce? The Department for Education is looking for an energetic HR or Commercial professional to support the continued growth of our internal apprenticeship programme.

You’ll take a key role in a small team within HR Capability, and your work will be essential in implementing our programme strategy and operating model.

This is an exciting time to join us as we transform to be fully empowered, user-centred, evidence-based, and deliver end-to-end. We are striving for world-class education, apprenticeships, training and care for everyone whatever their background.

Apprenticeships are at the heart of the department’s overall plan to build capability and ensure we have the right people with the right skills in the right roles. We have focused on excellence in Leadership & Management through Learning & Development encompassing Future Engage Deliver and a learning offer for all managers.

As the HR Supplier Manager – Apprenticeships, you will be responsible for ensuring our apprenticeship offer delivers our strategic objectives and continues to develop both in scale and quality through:

• Leading on contract management of our apprenticeship training providers;

• Bringing in new contracts and ensuring we are building productive partnerships with all our suppliers to maximise business impact.

This is a fantastic opportunity to demonstrate your skills in balancing multiple priorities, supplier management, interpreting data and strategic decision-making.

We have a strong culture of inclusion and diversity and seek to develop all our staff to allow them to make a full contribution and to fulfil their own potential. We promote and support the use of a range of flexible working patterns to help staff to balance home and work responsibilities, and we treat people fairly, irrespective of their working arrangements.

Job description

You’ll be leading the further development of the Department’s internal apprenticeship programme. We are ambitious about the potential of apprenticeships in developing a skilled workforce. So far, we have succeeded in exceeding our public sector target for apprenticeship starts. We offer a choice of over 20 apprenticeship standards for both existing employees to develop their skills and new recruits at the start of their careers.

Our priorities for the ongoing the apprenticeship programme are based around building professional capability, ensuring a quality offer and that we can deliver on our social aims.

You will be leading on the supplier management of our training providers to ensure excellence in our apprenticeship training.

In addition, you’ll lead work to continue to roll out new apprenticeship contracts and standards within the department:
•managing stakeholders
•taking opportunities to promote the programme
•communicating the benefits of apprenticeships.

We will welcome your passion and creative thinking in identifying and promoting new opportunities to develop and enhance our offer.

Some travel may be required.


In this role, you will be:

- Developing and drafting Business Cases for agreement within DfE and/or managing the clearance/approval process for Business Cases;

- Leading contract mobilisation meetings to ensure that processes are in place to effectively manage contracts within DfE commercial expectations;

- Developing and managing a schedule of monthly supplier management meetings;

- Identifying risks and taking appropriate action to mitigate;

- Developing and managing systems for monitoring individual suppliers to include consideration of:

• Evidence and reporting of progress against milestones and Key Performance Indicators;

• Validation visits to providers;
• Risks;
• Management Information data and participation in independent evaluation;

- Providing expert challenge to both internal colleagues and contractors to ensure that Key Performance Indicators and value for money considerations are reviewed;

-Managing allocated budgets and Levy funding.

To be successful you’ll need to demonstrate:

- Experience of delivering successful procurements using a range of commercial frameworks

- Experience of planning, developing and managing procurement documentation

- Experience of contract management of complex high value projects

- The ability to influence and engage stakeholders, both internal and external, to deliver the best outcomes for the programme and our apprentices
- Proven leadership skills

- Strong commitment to the opportunities and potential of apprenticeships to build workforce skills.

- Excellent communication skills, both in person and in writing.

- Attention to detail, and the ability to weigh up options to reach evidence-based decisions.

- CIPD qualification (or be willing to work towards one)

- Proficient in the use of Excel

Previous HR experience is desirable for success in this role, and ideally experience of Apprenticeships or Learning & Development.

Desirable criteria will only be assessed in the event of a tie break situation to make an informed decision


Applicants currently holding a permanent post in the Civil Service should note that, if successful, their salary on appointment would be determined by the Department’s transfer / promotion policies.
As a member of the DfE, you will be entitled to join the highly competitive Civil Service Pension Scheme, which many experts agree is one of the most generous in the UK.

You will have 25 days leave, increasing by 1 day every year to a maximum of 30 days after five years’ service. In addition, all staff receive the Queen’s Birthday privilege holiday and 8 days’ bank and public holidays.

We offer flexible working arrangements, such as job sharing, term-time working, flexi-time and compressed hours.

As an organisation, which exists to support education and lifelong learning, we offer our staff excellent professional development opportunities.

Apply today!