Two-year contract for the provision of External Quality Assurance of End Point Assessment Organisations awarded to Open Awards.The contract award follows a competitive procurement process which commenced in January 2019.

Today (Tuesday 16 April) the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education (the Institute) has awarded a new two-year contract to Open Awards for the provision of External Quality Assurance (EQA).

This decision sees a continuation of service from Open Awards who have been delivering EQA since 2017. However, this new contract will mark a step-up in service provision as it requires delivery against a new EQA framework, due to be published by the Institute in the coming months.

The new EQA framework will ensure quality, consistency and credibility in apprenticeship assessment across all EQA providers.

The Institute will also be working with Open Awards to establish and sustain an evidence-led, continuously improving, and effective service that drives up the quality of end-point assessments. It aims to reassure employers, learners and their families that apprenticeships are high-quality and credible, and those who complete an apprenticeship are able to thrive in their chosen career.  

Nikki Christie, Deputy Director for Apprenticeships, Assessment and Quality, said:

We are delighted to confirm that Open Awards will provide EQA on behalf of the Institute for the next two years. They were re-awarded the contract following a competitive tendering process and demonstrated how they will combine value-for-money with first-rate quality of service, delivering against our new EQA framework to ensure high quality end point assessment.

Heather Akehurst, Chief Executive of Open Awards, said:

The re-award was a tribute to the hard work undertaken in the last two and a half years by Open Awards staff and importantly the EPAOS with whom we work.

The contract award follows a competitive procurement process and was made on both technical quality and value-for-money of the proposals received.