Applications are now open for membership of our route panels.

If you are interested in being considered for panel membership, please complete the expression of interest form and upload a copy of your CV.


What is the route panel role?

Our aim as an Institute is to ensure that apprenticeships and technical qualifications provide opportunities for the broadest range of individuals and employers and are viewed and respected as highly as other education routes.

To help drive this work, we have appointed 15 sector-based route panels, made up of individual employers chosen for their outstanding sector knowledge, experience and expertise.

The routes are:

  • agriculture, environmental and animal care
  • business and administration
  • care services
  • catering and hospitality
  • construction
  • creative and design
  • digital
  • education and childcare
  • engineering and manufacturing
  • hair and beauty
  • health and science
  • legal, finance and accounting
  • protective services
  • sales, marketing and procurement
  • transport and logistics

*Energies and utilities – applications are also invited for membership of this newly established panel, which will work alongside existing route panels to consider the future skills needs of this growing sector. You can find out more about the energy and utilities panel here.

Route panel members provide strategic oversight for the sectors in which they operate, drawing on their knowledge and experience of the day-to-day realities of different occupations in those sectors to help shape skills development. They understand existing and future skills needs, enabling them to advise, challenge and make recommendations on the relevance, quality and credibility of apprenticeships, technical qualifications and other technical education products. 

Panel recommendations feed into the IfATE Compliance Board, where panel recommendations are reviewed, and final decisions are made.

As well as contributing formally to route panel meetings, many panel members are also passionate and active advocates for technical education, promoting the benefits of this across their networks and representing IfATE and its work to other employers and stakeholders.  

Members may also, from time to time, be asked for their views on issues related to their sectors or to business more widely, providing a trusted source of employer views for IfATE and other government departments.

Read the full role description.


How often do route panels meet?

Route panels currently meet once every eight weeks. Most meetings are held remotely, enabling members to dial in. From time to time, we invite members to attend meetings or other events in person, including bi-annual membership summits. These are usually held in London but may occasionally be hosted in other parts of the country by panel members themselves.

Candidates successfully appointed as route panel members are invited to attend an induction and must complete this before joining a panel.


How long does membership last and is it a paid role?

This is a three-year appointment, subject to successful completion of the first year. Appointments may be extended by mutual agreement.

Route panel members (other than chairs, who receive a nominal payment to cover the additional elements of their role) are not paid a fee. They may though claim expenses incurred as a result of attending panel meetings and other Institute activities, in accordance with IfATE’s expenses policy.


Who can apply?

Route panel members are outstanding representatives of the industries in which they work, with the knowledge, expertise and experience needed to help shape skills development for their sectors.

We are now looking for exceptional individuals to both strengthen existing route panel membership and to manage future changes in membership.

Read the detailed person specification for this role.


Conflicts of interest

Anyone applying for route panel membership must declare to the Institute any personal or business interest which may or may be perceived (by a reasonable member of the public) to influence their judgement in performing the functions and obligations of a route panel member.

To make sure their work remains entirely independent, route panel members may not also be a member of a trailblazer group or T Level panel in the same route, an IfATE peer reviewer or member of IfATE’s employer directory.

Applicants who hold one of these roles will be required to formally resign from the role if offered a place as a route panel member.

We do welcome applications from former members of such groups and may also consider applicants who are current members in routes that are different to the route for which they are applying.


How to apply?

If you are interested in being considered for panel membership, please complete the expression of interest form and upload a copy of your CV.

Interviews will be held with shortlisted candidates in the two weeks from Monday 10 October to Friday 21 October. Unfortunately, we are unable to offer feedback to individuals who are not shortlisted for interview.

If your application is successful, we may offer you a place on a panel straight away or hold your details on file (with your permission) until future panel membership opportunities become available.

We’ll contact you by email to acknowledge receipt of your application and to update you on its progress, so it’s advisable to check spam folders regularly.

We are committed to eliminating discrimination, valuing diversity and promoting equality of opportunity and welcome applications from people of all backgrounds.

The Institute operates a Guaranteed Interview Scheme (GIS) for disabled people. If you wish to apply for consideration under the scheme, please complete the Guaranteed Interview Scheme form (included on the expression of interest form) and submit this with your application.

The closing date for applications is midnight 30 September 2022.


Additional information

If you have any questions about this role or the application process, email: 

Please make sure you include ‘Route panel member application’ in the subject line of any email.

You can find out more about the work of the Institute, the role of route panels and current route panel membership.