After hundreds and hundreds of emails, 8 meetings with Institute for Apprenticeships representatives, 2 industry workshops gathering together numerous repairers from around the country, and 1 year of hard work by our team, AutoRaise are absolutely delighted to announce on behalf of the industry Trailblazer group that the Vehicle Damage Assessor Apprenticeship Standard and End Point Assessment Plan has now been approved for delivery.
Designed by employers within the vehicle repair sector this Standard is at level 4 with a duration of up to 36 months.
Working with three leading industry training providers, numbers were crunched to determine how much it would realistically cost to deliver this Standard (including End Point Assessment). The Institute for Apprenticeships allocated a funding band of £9,000 and experts within the sector agreed that this was in line with their thinking.
The Standard and Plan will ensure that VDAs obtain the underpinning knowledge they require to competently assess a vehicle’s damage, input data into estimating software and understand how this all comes together to ensure viability of a safe repair.
Employers who have previously relied on examinations without any underpinning training or knowledge transfer have roundly welcomed the programme.
Commenting on the Standard, Robert Dearnaley – Managing Director of Fix Auto Rochester and Fix Auto Maidstone - said:
“Having a structured, in-depth learning process which takes candidates through the entire spectrum of estimating a vehicle, dealing with customer needs and delivering a quality outcome will be transformational for the whole industry. It was fantastic be part of this forward-thinking group of fellow repairers and industry stakeholders who are committed to make positive changes to our industry”.
Employers have a wide range of options when selecting someone to become a VDA apprentice which gives them flexibility to ensure they find the best fit for their business. Choosing from existing VDA staff, staff in the business not in a VDA role, those with a technical background or those without…. the possibilities are endless.
What the apprentice will need to have is a passion and willingness to learn and the commitment to attend their employer’s chosen training provider 1 day a week or 1 week out of every 6, to undertake their “off the job” training. The remaining 80% of their time, the apprentice will be at work, learning on the job.
AutoRaise would like to thank all of those who were instrumental in supporting the development of this much needed apprenticeship programme including:
Chris Oliver – Trailblazer Lead
Andy Moore - Emtec
Andy Walters – Rainbow Bodyshops
Ben Cardy - AIC
Ben Martin – PSA Training
Bill Duffy – Rye Street Group
Carl Flint – GB Flint/Fix Auto Nottingham
Dave Sargeant - Gemini
Dawn Mullins – Aylesbury Panelcraft
Earle Avann – Rainbow Bodyshops
James Dunn – AW Repair Centres
Louise Woolacott – Fix Auto Mid Devon
Mark Connolly – The Vella Group
Paul Smith – Fix Auto Loughborough
Phil Travis - Morelli
Peter Randhawa – Steer Automotive Group
Richard Harrington – Fix Auto Stevenage
Richard Taylor – GT Motive
Richard Tutt – Motofix
Rob Oldale – Blackpool and the Fylde College
Robert Dearnaley –Fix Auto Rochester and Maidstone
Steve Harris – Fleetline/Fix Auto Croydon
Scott Dunnell – Fix Auto Dagenham
Stuart Perry – Automotive Training Solutions
It’s essential that the industry gets behind addressing the skills shortage, whether it be taking on new apprentices, hosting Industry Showcase Events or simply helping to spread the word.