New apprenticeship aims to attract fresh blood into plant sector

THE Construction Plant-hire Association (CPA) has announced the official launch of the new Hire Controller (plant, tools and equipment) Trailblazer Apprenticeship Programme.

Following approval by the Institute for Apprenticeships (IfA), the CPA hosted a focus implementation group launch in conjunction with the CITB to outline the new standard, documentation and end-point assessment devised to support the initiative.

The move follows work by an employer-led Trailblazer Working Group, which determined that a Hire Controller Trailblazer Apprenticeship Programme was ‘critical’ to help attract new recruits to the plant industry and also upskill existing staff.

The CPA has provided managerial and administrative support, while both the International Powered Access Federation (IPAF) and Hire Association Europe (HAE) have been involved in the development of the apprenticeship, which is supported by CITB. This means the programme is recognised by all primary trade bodies and industry federations in the hire sector and members of the CPA, IPAF and HAE will all be able to make use of the new pathway into the hire and powered access rental sector.

The launch event in London was hosted by CPA technical development manager Peter Brown and Neil Hartis MBE of the CITB, and was attended by Kevin Minton (CPA chief executive) as well as representatives from CITB, IPAF, HAE, several members of the Trailblazer Working Group, employers and organisations who will be delivering the new scheme.

The new apprenticeship has been set at a level 2 and will take between 12-18 months to complete, with 20% of that time featuring ‘off-the-job’ training.

The process aims to develop behaviours such as forming positive relationships with customers, working both within a team and independently, developing a ‘health and safety-first’ attitude, being self-motivated to meet operational targets, remaining respectful of equality and diversity, and remaining committed to continual personal and professional development.