Key information

  1. Status: Approved for delivery
  2. Reference: ST0811
  3. Version: 1.0
  4. Level: 6
  5. Typical duration to gateway: 30 months
  6. Typical EPA period: 4 months
  7. Maximum funding: £18000
  8. Route: Sales, marketing and procurement
  9. Date updated: 11/04/2024
  10. Approved for delivery: 18 October 2023
  11. Lars code: 732
  12. EQA provider: Ofqual
  13. Review: this apprenticeship will be reviewed in accordance with our change request policy.
Print apprenticeship summary

Apprenticeship summary

Overview of the role

Set the procurement and supply chain strategy.

Occupation summary

This occupation is found in small, medium, large, and multinational organisations in private, public and third sectors such as the Local Authorities, Central Government, Education, Finance, Construction, Facilities, Automotive, Manufacturing, Engineering, Health, Retail, Food, Hospitality, IT.

This occupation is found in organisations where there is a requirement to source and procure goods and/or services in line with national or international procurement laws, or internal governance processes.

The broad purpose of the occupation is to provide specialist procurement and supply knowledge to drive and set the procurement and supply chain strategy. Typically, this involves the strategic and tactical procurement of goods and services, ensuring compliance with national/international legislation and corporate governance. This occupation requires ethical leadership, driving an ethical approach through policy and sustainable supply chains. Increasingly this occupation requires a thorough understanding of the sustainability impacts of procurement and supply decisions on both upstream supply chain and the use of materials, products, or applications over their lifetime. For example, procurement and supply decisions concerning energy sources need to include the direct and indirect impacts of an occupation’s energy demand and the implementation of measures for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Procurement and supply decisions about raw material and waste generation will consider the implementation of measures toward sustainable resource consumption, whole-life and circular economy thinking.      

Senior procurement and supply chain professionals set and review procurement and supply chain strategies in line with competitive and external organisational environments, developing strategies, analysing, and managing the whole procurement life cycle. This includes the management of existing contracts; seeking opportunities to improve efficiencies; adding value by renegotiating costs; improvement of commercial benefits, driving social value, category management, price and cost analysis, management of procurement budgets, supplier performance management, setting key performance measures including contribution to Net Carbon Zero and sustainability criteria, procurement resource utilisation and conducting supplier due diligence to eliminate potential risks, supplier failure, supply disruption and changing markets. They will need to be mindful of the risks of greenwashing when tendering and engaging in contracts with suppliers where environmental, ethics, economy or sustainability claims for the business or organisation may be adversely impacted.

Senior procurement and supply chain professionals manage conflicting procurement and current political objectives such as net carbon zero, and risk management to influence successful outcomes. They work with multiple business stakeholders and committees to achieve operational, procurement and financial targets.

In their daily work, an employee in this occupation interacts with the senior leadership team, influencing and applying best practice in procurement and delivering strategic procurement plans in line with business goals and objectives.

Senior procurement and supply chain professionals engage with internal and external stakeholders on behalf of their organisations at both strategic and tactical levels including, a range of internal stakeholders such as members of their own team and other departments such as board members, category managers and other senior stakeholders, such as functional leads (e.g., Finance, Stores and Distribution, Logistics, Sales, Marketing, Production, Human Resources). They may also engage with organisational sustainability teams, audit departments and financial teams responsible for managing and mitigating an organisations carbon footprint to ensure accurate reporting and auditing.

They work in partnership with external stakeholders to negotiate at strategic planning levels to achieve common goals and set targets for future development within the procurement profession. These include pressure groups, government bodies, members of the public, service users, and non-government organisations (NGO's).

An employee in this occupation will be responsible for...

the Procurement functions. Senior procurement and supply chain professionals lead, mentor, coach, evaluate, anticipate, and share best practice within their teams and across the department.

A senior procurement and supply chain professional at this level will develop, manage, and deliver the procurement strategy delivering specific and complex procurement objectives to internal and external stakeholders across organisations/multiple sites and/or business units.

They will deliver specific and complex procurement objectives across multiple sites or business units to internal and external stakeholders, whilst managing and supporting multiple business stakeholders with operational and financial targets, whilst also utilising buying power with new and existing key market suppliers.

Working at this level this role will be responsible for reviewing and identifying potential risk and opportunities to change and improve whilst improving existing policies and procedures of the procurement function. This role will be required to analyse and reduce continuity supply risks that impact the organisation including those related to the challenges of climate change and meeting the challenges of net carbon zero by 2050 (or in line with Government policy).

Senior procurement and supply chain professionals engage with stakeholders to influence critical supplier relationships to maximise commercial leverage or added value. This involves responsibility for leading due diligence procurement activity for acquisition targets, working with stakeholders to maximise cost and optimise cost efficiency. Leading and growing collaborative supplier relationships to meet service levels is expected at this level. Lead reviews with key suppliers, and produce detailed reports on performance, spend, concerns or opportunities.

From an operational perspective this role will evaluate and measure key performance indicators to track procurement activity and develop continuous improvement plans. They will maintain and improve processes to develop procurement operations in line with organisation standards. They will be responsible for working with stock and logistics teams to manage inventory levels.

Senior procurement and supply chain professionals will manage procurement teams and within the Procurement function. They lead, mentor, coach, evaluate, anticipate resource requirements, and share best practice within their teams and across the department.

 

Typical job titles include:

Category manager Commercial manager Head of procurement and supply chain Procurement manager Senior buyers Supply chain manager

Duties

  • Duty 1 Manage the procurement and supply chain function so that it complies with corporate governance, carbon auditing, policy, legal and regulatory requirements.
  • Duty 2 Lead on procurement and supply organisational objectives and use key performance indicators to measure activities which drive and improve performance and sustainability objectives.
  • Duty 3 Identify the impact of climate change and environmental factors on procurement and supply functions whilst developing sourcing strategies and creating category management plans to take advantage of opportunities whilst mitigating risk and challenges throughout supply chains.
  • Duty 4 Lead and create responsible and sustainable procurement and social value initiatives throughout the procurement cycle and supply chains.
  • Duty 5 Lead and drive procurement and supply chain change and innovation to deliver commercial solutions and approaches to achieve competitive advantage.
  • Duty 6 Apply relevant legislation and contract management initiatives with the objective of delivering optimal value and meeting business needs and drive success throughout contract life.
  • Duty 7 Manage procurement and supply function to ensure it is compliant with internal governance, such as any procurement framework requirements, external governance, regulatory and statutory requirements, and meeting net carbon zero targets.
  • Duty 8 Identify emerging technologies such as material requirement planning (MRP), enterprise resource planning (ERP) and procurement systems or databases to drive procurement and supply chain capabilities, improve performance and control expenditure.
  • Duty 9 Inspire and collaborate with internal and external key stakeholders and relevant industry or sector bodies that influence procurement and supply chains.
  • Duty 10 Lead the professional development of the procurement and supply team and identify continuous improvement opportunities for individuals.
  • Duty 11 Embed quality management systems and improvement methodologies to optimise procurement spend and deliver procurement and supply chain objectives including improved sustainability outcomes.
  • Duty 12 Lead on risk management for the Procurement and Supply function to include supplier financial stability, market risk and other internal organisational risks, external environmental risks, and the impacts of climate change.
  • Duty 13 Contribute to the organisation budget based on procurement and supply chain requirements.
  • Duty 14 Manage conflicting objectives of stakeholders during sourcing activities and advise on commercial priorities.

Apprenticeship summary

ST0811, senior procurement and supply chain professional level 6

This is a summary of the key things that you – the apprentice and your employer need to know about your end-point assessment (EPA). You and your employer should read the EPA plan for the full details. It has information on assessment method requirements, roles and responsibilities, and re-sits and re-takes.

What is an end-point assessment and why it happens

An EPA is an assessment at the end of your apprenticeship. It will assess you against the knowledge, skills, and behaviours (KSBs) in the occupational standard. Your training will cover the KSBs. The EPA is your opportunity to show an independent assessor how well you can carry out the occupation you have been trained for.

Your employer will choose an end-point assessment organisation (EPAO) to deliver the EPA. Your employer and training provider should tell you what to expect and how to prepare for your EPA.

The length of the training for this apprenticeship is typically 30 months. The EPA period is typically 4 months.

The overall grades available for this apprenticeship are:

  • fail
  • pass
  • distinction


EPA gateway

The EPA gateway is when the EPAO checks and confirms that you have met any requirements required before you start the EPA. You will only enter the gateway when your employer says you are ready.

The gateway requirements for your EPA are:

  • achieved English and mathematics qualifications in line with the apprenticeship funding rules
  • for the professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence., you must submit a portfolio of evidence

  • passed any other qualifications listed in the occupational standard

For the senior procurement and supply chain professional, the qualification required is:

CIPS L6 Professional diploma in procurement and supply

Assessment methods




Who to contact for help or more information

You should speak to your employer if you have a query that relates to your job.

You should speak to your training provider if you have any questions about your training or EPA before it starts.

You should receive detailed information and support from the EPAO before the EPA starts. You should speak to them if you have any questions about your EPA once it has started.Reasonable adjustments

If you have a disability, a physical or mental health condition or other special considerations, you may be able to have a reasonable adjustment that takes this into account. You should speak to your employer, training provider and EPAO and ask them what support you can get. The EPAO will decide if an adjustment is appropriate.


Professional recognition

This apprenticeship aligns with Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply for Membership

Please contact the professional body for more details.

Print occupational standard

Details of the occupational standard

Occupation summary

This occupation is found in small, medium, large, and multinational organisations in private, public and third sectors such as the Local Authorities, Central Government, Education, Finance, Construction, Facilities, Automotive, Manufacturing, Engineering, Health, Retail, Food, Hospitality, IT.

This occupation is found in organisations where there is a requirement to source and procure goods and/or services in line with national or international procurement laws, or internal governance processes.

The broad purpose of the occupation is to provide specialist procurement and supply knowledge to drive and set the procurement and supply chain strategy. Typically, this involves the strategic and tactical procurement of goods and services, ensuring compliance with national/international legislation and corporate governance. This occupation requires ethical leadership, driving an ethical approach through policy and sustainable supply chains. Increasingly this occupation requires a thorough understanding of the sustainability impacts of procurement and supply decisions on both upstream supply chain and the use of materials, products, or applications over their lifetime. For example, procurement and supply decisions concerning energy sources need to include the direct and indirect impacts of an occupation’s energy demand and the implementation of measures for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Procurement and supply decisions about raw material and waste generation will consider the implementation of measures toward sustainable resource consumption, whole-life and circular economy thinking.      

Senior procurement and supply chain professionals set and review procurement and supply chain strategies in line with competitive and external organisational environments, developing strategies, analysing, and managing the whole procurement life cycle. This includes the management of existing contracts; seeking opportunities to improve efficiencies; adding value by renegotiating costs; improvement of commercial benefits, driving social value, category management, price and cost analysis, management of procurement budgets, supplier performance management, setting key performance measures including contribution to Net Carbon Zero and sustainability criteria, procurement resource utilisation and conducting supplier due diligence to eliminate potential risks, supplier failure, supply disruption and changing markets. They will need to be mindful of the risks of greenwashing when tendering and engaging in contracts with suppliers where environmental, ethics, economy or sustainability claims for the business or organisation may be adversely impacted.

Senior procurement and supply chain professionals manage conflicting procurement and current political objectives such as net carbon zero, and risk management to influence successful outcomes. They work with multiple business stakeholders and committees to achieve operational, procurement and financial targets.

In their daily work, an employee in this occupation interacts with the senior leadership team, influencing and applying best practice in procurement and delivering strategic procurement plans in line with business goals and objectives.

Senior procurement and supply chain professionals engage with internal and external stakeholders on behalf of their organisations at both strategic and tactical levels including, a range of internal stakeholders such as members of their own team and other departments such as board members, category managers and other senior stakeholders, such as functional leads (e.g., Finance, Stores and Distribution, Logistics, Sales, Marketing, Production, Human Resources). They may also engage with organisational sustainability teams, audit departments and financial teams responsible for managing and mitigating an organisations carbon footprint to ensure accurate reporting and auditing.

They work in partnership with external stakeholders to negotiate at strategic planning levels to achieve common goals and set targets for future development within the procurement profession. These include pressure groups, government bodies, members of the public, service users, and non-government organisations (NGO's).

An employee in this occupation will be responsible for...

the Procurement functions. Senior procurement and supply chain professionals lead, mentor, coach, evaluate, anticipate, and share best practice within their teams and across the department.

A senior procurement and supply chain professional at this level will develop, manage, and deliver the procurement strategy delivering specific and complex procurement objectives to internal and external stakeholders across organisations/multiple sites and/or business units.

They will deliver specific and complex procurement objectives across multiple sites or business units to internal and external stakeholders, whilst managing and supporting multiple business stakeholders with operational and financial targets, whilst also utilising buying power with new and existing key market suppliers.

Working at this level this role will be responsible for reviewing and identifying potential risk and opportunities to change and improve whilst improving existing policies and procedures of the procurement function. This role will be required to analyse and reduce continuity supply risks that impact the organisation including those related to the challenges of climate change and meeting the challenges of net carbon zero by 2050 (or in line with Government policy).

Senior procurement and supply chain professionals engage with stakeholders to influence critical supplier relationships to maximise commercial leverage or added value. This involves responsibility for leading due diligence procurement activity for acquisition targets, working with stakeholders to maximise cost and optimise cost efficiency. Leading and growing collaborative supplier relationships to meet service levels is expected at this level. Lead reviews with key suppliers, and produce detailed reports on performance, spend, concerns or opportunities.

From an operational perspective this role will evaluate and measure key performance indicators to track procurement activity and develop continuous improvement plans. They will maintain and improve processes to develop procurement operations in line with organisation standards. They will be responsible for working with stock and logistics teams to manage inventory levels.

Senior procurement and supply chain professionals will manage procurement teams and within the Procurement function. They lead, mentor, coach, evaluate, anticipate resource requirements, and share best practice within their teams and across the department.

 

Typical job titles include:

Category manager Commercial manager Head of procurement and supply chain Procurement manager Senior buyers Supply chain manager

Entry requirements

Whilst any entry requirements will be a matter for individual employers, typically an apprentice might be expected to have already achieved GCSE Maths and English on entry.

An individual will have also gained successful completion of the CIPS Level 5 Advanced Diploma in Procurement and Supply before they can start this apprenticeship

Occupation duties

Duty KSBs

Duty 1 Manage the procurement and supply chain function so that it complies with corporate governance, carbon auditing, policy, legal and regulatory requirements.

K3 K7 K26

S9 S11 S16

B1 B3 B4

Duty 2 Lead on procurement and supply organisational objectives and use key performance indicators to measure activities which drive and improve performance and sustainability objectives.

K13 K16 K17 K18 K25

S1 S9 S10 S17 S18 S21

Duty 3 Identify the impact of climate change and environmental factors on procurement and supply functions whilst developing sourcing strategies and creating category management plans to take advantage of opportunities whilst mitigating risk and challenges throughout supply chains.

K5 K9 K11 K15 K18

S2 S3 S11 S17

B3

Duty 4 Lead and create responsible and sustainable procurement and social value initiatives throughout the procurement cycle and supply chains.

K1 K3 K4 K11 K18

S1 S8 S11 S13 S16

B1 B3

Duty 5 Lead and drive procurement and supply chain change and innovation to deliver commercial solutions and approaches to achieve competitive advantage.

K13 K16 K17 K18 K25

S3 S4 S5 S8 S14

B2 B5

Duty 6 Apply relevant legislation and contract management initiatives with the objective of delivering optimal value and meeting business needs and drive success throughout contract life.

K1 K4 K6 K7 K17 K22 K23

S3 S7 S12 S16

Duty 7 Manage procurement and supply function to ensure it is compliant with internal governance, such as any procurement framework requirements, external governance, regulatory and statutory requirements, and meeting net carbon zero targets.

K3 K7 K23 K25

S11 S12 S16 S18

B3 B6

Duty 8 Identify emerging technologies such as material requirement planning (MRP), enterprise resource planning (ERP) and procurement systems or databases to drive procurement and supply chain capabilities, improve performance and control expenditure.

K11 K13 K14 K15 K26

S2 S10 S13 S19 S21

B5

Duty 9 Inspire and collaborate with internal and external key stakeholders and relevant industry or sector bodies that influence procurement and supply chains.

K5 K8 K15 K21 K22

S5 S6 S15 S19 S20

B1 B4 B6

Duty 10 Lead the professional development of the procurement and supply team and identify continuous improvement opportunities for individuals.

K5 K10 K19 K24

S8 S20 S22

B2

Duty 11 Embed quality management systems and improvement methodologies to optimise procurement spend and deliver procurement and supply chain objectives including improved sustainability outcomes.

K2 K12 K13 K14 K18 K25 K26

S8 S10 S12 S13 S17 S19 S21

Duty 12 Lead on risk management for the Procurement and Supply function to include supplier financial stability, market risk and other internal organisational risks, external environmental risks, and the impacts of climate change.

K2 K9 K12 K13 K20

S1 S7 S13 S14

B5

Duty 13 Contribute to the organisation budget based on procurement and supply chain requirements.

K12 K20

S4 S15

B5

Duty 14 Manage conflicting objectives of stakeholders during sourcing activities and advise on commercial priorities.

K6 K8 K22

S6 S10 S12

B1 B4 B5 B6

KSBs

Knowledge

K1: Competitive advantage and how that adds value for their organisation and supply chain. Back to Duty

K2: Strategic risk management techniques that drive appropriate due diligence and whole-life risk management. Back to Duty

K3: Responsible procurement expertise covering ethical/social, environmental, and economic factors. Back to Duty

K4: Procurement cycle and its role in delivering the organisation’s strategy. Back to Duty

K5: Concepts of leadership and management in procurement. Back to Duty

K6: How a business case is developed, and the roles of stakeholders involved. Back to Duty

K7: Relevant regulatory and legislative requirements such as data protection, modern slavery and its application for procurement and supply chain management, competition, and employment. Back to Duty

K8: Approaches to managing strategic stakeholder relationships. Back to Duty

K9: The benefits, risks and implications of globalised supply chains and country-specific risks and challenges. Back to Duty

K10: Change management concepts, and methods of implementing change within the organisation. Back to Duty

K11: How to use horizon scanning to identify the current and future needs of the sector and procurement landscape. Back to Duty

K12: Financial management techniques and implications for procurement. Back to Duty

K13: Systems and technology used to support and improve procurement planning such as demand management, optimisation of inventory and supplier performance management. Back to Duty

K14: Importance of data integrity and cyber security to protect commercial information. Back to Duty

K15: The use of, and the continuing development, of Category Management. Back to Duty

K16: The use of collaborative and competitive strategies to identify routes to market. Back to Duty

K17: Contract and on-going supplier relationship management including exit strategies. Back to Duty

K18: Sustainability and resilience of supply chain networks. Back to Duty

K19: Project management tools and techniques. Back to Duty

K20: Pricing and payment mechanisms in contracting. Back to Duty

K21: Commercial negotiation approaches and techniques. Back to Duty

K22: Conflict management and dispute resolution. Back to Duty

K23: Contract development including legal considerations. Back to Duty

K24: The continuous development requirements and training needs of their team. Back to Duty

K25: Quality management systems and improvement methodologies. Back to Duty

K26: Software tools used to analyse, interpret, and evaluate intelligence to inform judgements and enable decision making. Back to Duty

Skills

S1: Identify and apply a consistent approach to risk assessment. Back to Duty

S2: Use impact analysis to influence the decision making process. Back to Duty

S3: Develop category strategies and implement them. Back to Duty

S4: Apply project management skills in order to lead projects for procurement. Back to Duty

S5: Negotiate and challenge external stakeholders in order to create innovative commercial solutions. Back to Duty

S6: Influence and persuade internal clients and stakeholders. Back to Duty

S7: Create and implement intervention strategies to correct a contractual failure. Back to Duty

S8: Identify opportunities, and lead change to continually improve the procurement function. Back to Duty

S9: Able to align the procurement or functional strategy with the business strategy. Back to Duty

S10: Analyse, interpret and evaluate findings from qualitative and quantitative research and benchmarking methods to support the decision making process. Back to Duty

S11: Deliver sustainable solutions which include corporate social responsibility factors. Back to Duty

S12: Lead and be accountable for due diligence in supplier selection and contract award. Back to Duty

S13: Use horizon scanning and conceptualisation to deliver high performance strategies focusing on value and sustainable outcomes. Back to Duty

S14: Identify supply chain vulnerabilities and opportunities ensuring the delivery of supply chain improvements. Back to Duty

S15: Prepare and provide commercial and procurement guidance for business cases for organisational approval. Back to Duty

S16: Apply and work within guidelines relating to sustainability, Governance and Regulatory compliance. Back to Duty

S17: Develop sustainable procurement practices which allows the organisation to future proof themselves against changes in social, economic, and environmental factors. Back to Duty

S18: Contribute to projects and the transformation of procurement services across organisational boundaries such as those impacted by sustainability and the UK Net Carbon Zero target. Back to Duty

S19: Identify emerging technology and software relevant to the procurement processes. Back to Duty

S20: Lead and facilitate learning and continuous development for their stakeholders. Back to Duty

S21: Use quality management systems or improvement methodologies to optimise procurement spend and deliver procurement and supply chain objectives. Back to Duty

S22: Coach and mentor individuals within their business. Back to Duty

Behaviours

B1: Role models ethical behaviour and practices. Back to Duty

B2: Seeks learning opportunities and continuous professional development. Back to Duty

B3: Takes responsibility, shows initiative and is organised. Back to Duty

B4: Considers the “big” picture and the detail together. Back to Duty

B5: Works flexibly and adapts to circumstances. Back to Duty

B6: Works collaboratively with others across the organisation and external stakeholders. Back to Duty

Qualifications

English and Maths

Apprentices without level 2 English and maths will need to achieve this level prior to taking the End-Point Assessment. For those with an education, health and care plan or a legacy statement, the apprenticeship’s English and maths minimum requirement is Entry Level 3. A British Sign Language (BSL) qualification is an alternative to the English qualification for those whose primary language is BSL.

Other mandatory qualifications

CIPS L6 Professional diploma in procurement and supply

Level: 6 (non-degree qualification)

Professional recognition

This standard aligns with the following professional recognition:

  • Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply for Membership
Print EPA plan

End-point assessment plan

V1.0

Introduction and overview

This document explains the requirements for end-point assessment (EPA) for the senior procurement and supply chain professional apprenticeship. End-point assessment organisations (EPAOs) must follow this when designing and delivering the EPA.

Senior procurement and supply chain professional apprentices, their employers and training providers should read this document.

A full-time senior procurement and supply chain professional apprentice typically spends 30 months on-programme. The apprentice must spend at least 12 months on-programme and complete the required amount of off-the-job training in line with the apprenticeship funding rules.

The EPA will assess occupational competence.

Apprentices must complete a Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply (CIPS) Level 6 Professional Diploma in Procurement and Supply as part of their apprenticeship. Before starting EPA, an apprentice must meet the gateway requirements.

For this apprenticeship they are:

  • the employer must be content that the apprentice is working at or above the occupational standard apprentices must have achieved certain units of the qualification mandated in the senior procurement and supply professional occupational standard.
  • the apprentice must have completed the CIPS Level 5 Advanced Diploma in Procurement and Supply before entering on the programme.
  • the qualification units required by the gateway are:
  • CIPS L6 – 6 units towards the CIPS L6 Diploma in Procurement and Supply- Units L6M1 L6M2 L6M3 and 3 optional units.

The EPAO must confirm that all required gateway evidence has been provided and accepted as meeting the gateway requirements. CIPS must provide the certificates to the training provider as confirmation to the EPAO that the apprentice has achieved the required pre-requisites for gateway entry. The EPAO is responsible for confirming full gateway eligibility. Once this has been confirmed, the EPA period starts.

An approved EPAO must conduct the EPA for this apprenticeship. Employers must select an approved EPAO from the register of end-point assessment organisations (RoEPAO).

This EPA has 3 assessment methods.

The grades available for each assessment method are below.

Assessment method 1 - presentation with questions:

  • fail
  • pass
  • distinction

Assessment method 2 - professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.:

  • fail
  • pass
  • distinction

Assessment method 3 - case study test:

  • fail
  • pass
  • merit
  • distinction

The result from each assessment method is combined to decide the overall apprenticeship grade. The following grades are available for the apprenticeship:

  • fail
  • pass
  • distinction

EPA summary table

On-programme - typically 30 months

The apprentice must complete training to develop the knowledge, skills and behaviours (KSBs) of the occupational standard.

The apprentice must complete training towards English and maths qualifications in line with the apprenticeship funding rules.

The apprentice must complete training towards any other qualifications listed in the occupational standard.

The qualification(s) required are:

CIPS L6 Professional diploma in procurement and supply

The apprentice must compile a portfolio of evidence.

End-point assessment gateway

The employer must be content that the apprentice is working at or above the occupational standard.

The apprentice’s employer must confirm that they think the apprentice:

  • is working at or above the occupational standard as a senior procurement and supply chain professional
  • has the evidence required to pass the gateway and is ready to take the EPA

The apprentice must have passed any other qualifications listed in the senior procurement and supply chain professional occupational standard ST0811.

The qualification(s) required are:

  • Units L6M1 L6M2 L6M3 and 3 optional units towards CIPS L6 Professional diploma in procurement and supply

The apprentice must have achieved English and maths qualifications in line with the apprenticeship funding rules.

For the professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence. the apprentice must submit a portfolio of evidence.

The apprentice must submit any policies and procedures as requested by the EPAO.

End-point assessment - typically 4 months

Grades available for each assessment method:

Presentation with questions

  • fail
  • pass
  • distinction

Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.

  • fail
  • pass
  • distinction

Case study test

  • fail
  • pass
  • merit
  • distinction

Overall EPA and apprenticeship can be graded:

    • fail
    • pass
    • distinction
Professional recognition

This apprenticeship aligns with Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply for Membership

The apprenticeship will either wholly or partially satisfy the requirements for registration at this level.

The requirements for Membership are:

  • successful completion of the CIPS Level 4 Diploma or the Level 4 Commercial Procurement and Supply apprenticeship
  • successful completion of the CIPS Level 5 Advanced Diploma
  • successful completion of the CIPS Level 6 Professional Diploma or the Level 6 Senior Procurement and Supply Chain Professional apprenticeship.

Duration of end-point assessment period

The EPA is taken in the EPA period. The EPA period starts when the EPAO confirms the gateway requirements have been met and is typically 4 months.

The EPAO should confirm the gateway requirements have been met and the EPA should start as quickly as possible.

EPA gateway

The apprentice’s employer must confirm that they think their apprentice is working at or above the occupational standard. The apprentice will then enter the gateway. The employer may take advice from the apprentice's training provider(s), but the employer must make the decision.

The apprentice must meet the gateway requirements before starting their EPA.

These are:

  • achieved English and maths qualifications in line with the apprenticeship funding rules
  • completed units L6M1 Strategic Ethical Leadership; L6M2 Global Commercial Strategy; L6M3 Global Strategic Supply Chain Management and 3 optional units from the 5 elective units towards CIPS L6 Professional diploma in procurement and supply
  • for the professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence. the apprentice must submit a portfolio of evidence

Unit L6M4 Future Strategic Challenges for the Profession, of the CIPS L6 Professional Diploma in Procurement and Supply is mapped to the apprenticeship EPA case study assessment method and corresponding KSBs.

An apprentice may not therefore take unit L6M4 from the CIPS L6 Professional diploma in procurement and supply before the gateway. In the unlikely event that an apprentice may have achieved this unit prior to starting the apprenticeship, this would exclude them from undertaking the apprenticeship.

Any person who believes they have prior learning is advised to check their eligibility for the apprenticeship via guidance found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/apprenticeships-recognition-of-priorlearning/apprenticeships-initial-assessment-to-recognise-prior-learning

Portfolio of evidence requirements:

The apprentice must compile a portfolio of evidence during the on-programme period of the apprenticeship. It should only contain evidence related to the KSBs that will be assessed by this assessment method. It will typically contain 18 discrete pieces of evidence. Evidence must be mapped against the KSBs. Evidence may be used to demonstrate more than one KSB; a qualitative as opposed to quantitative approach is suggested.

Evidence sources may include:

  • workplace documentation and records, for example:
  • workplace policies and procedures
  • witness statements
  • annotated photographs
  • video clips (maximum total duration 5 minutes); the apprentice must be in view and identifiable

This is not a definitive list; other evidence sources can be included.

The portfolio of evidence should not include reflective accounts or any methods of self-assessment. Any employer contributions should focus on direct observation of performance (for example, witness statements) rather than opinions. The evidence provided should be valid and attributable to the apprentice; the portfolio of evidence should contain a statement from the employer and apprentice confirming this.

The EPAO should not assess the portfolio of evidence directly as it underpins the discussion. The independent assessor should review the portfolio of evidence to prepare questions for the discussion. They are not required to provide feedback after this review.

The apprentice must submit any policies and procedures as requested by the EPAO.

The EPA period starts when the EPAO confirms all gateway requirements have been met.

The expectation is they will do this as quickly as possible.

Order of assessment methods

The assessment methods must be delivered in the following order:• presentation with questions• professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence• case study testThe result of one assessment method does not need to be known before starting the next.

The rationale is to ensure that the mandated CIPS qualification is completed at the same time as the end-point assessment.

Presentation with questions

Overview

In the presentation with questions, the apprentice delivers a presentation to an independent assessor on a set subject. The independent assessor must ask questions after the presentation. It gives the apprentice the opportunity to demonstrate the KSBs mapped to this assessment method.

Rationale

This assessment method is being used because:

  • Setting the presentation title post-gateway ensures the reliability and validity of the EPA, and the period between the apprentice’s submission and the actual assessment, allows the independent assessor to prepare appropriate questions pertinent to the presentation.
  • The presentation will allow the apprentice to demonstrate their knowledge, skills and behaviours relating to the KSBs assigned to this assessment method, allowing the independent assessor to draw these out, and to assess performance against the distinction criteria. Questions and answers following the presentation must seek to assess KSBs not evidenced through the presentation and/or depth of understanding to assess performance against the distinction criteria.

Delivery

The presentation with questions must be structured to give the apprentice the opportunity to demonstrate the KSBs mapped to this assessment method to the highest available grade.

An independent assessor must conduct and assess the presentation with questions.

The presentation must cover:

  • present on a strategic project or programme that you have been leading. please define your personal role in the project, your approach to the wider project including any challenges you came across, and the outcomes you delivered.
  • present on a change project that you have led. this could be a process or departmental change project. outline the motivations for change, the process involved and the outcomes that you delivered from the project.
  • present on a tendering project you have led. define the stages you went through from planning and market engagement, through tendering to contract implementation. outline any market specific approaches you implemented.
  • present on a project that you have led which had a distinct social value element. how did you integrate social value into the project and what was the resulting benefit?

The purpose of the presentation is to allow the apprentice to demonstrate their competence against grading descriptors.

The apprentice must submit any presentation materials to the EPAO by the end of week 4 of the EPA period. The apprentice must notify the EPAO, at that point, of any technical requirements for the presentation.

During the presentation, the apprentice must have access to:

  • audio-visual presentation equipment
  • flip chart and writing and drawing materials
  • computer

The independent assessor must have at least 2 weeks to review any presentation materials, before the presentation is delivered by the apprentice, to allow them to prepare questions. The EPAO must give the apprentice at least 1 weeks' notice of the presentation assessment.

The independent assessor must ask questions after the presentation.

The purpose of the questions is to assess the level of competence against the grading descriptors.

The presentation and questions must last 60 minutes. This will typically include a presentation of 20 minutes and questioning lasting 40 minutes. The independent assessor must use the full time available for questioning. The independent assessor can increase the total time of the presentation and questioning by up to 10%. This time is to allow the apprentice to complete their last point or respond to a question if necessary.

The independent assessor must ask at least 6 questions. They must use the questions from the EPAO’s question bank or create their own questions in line with the EPAO’s training. Follow up questions are allowed where clarification is required.

The independent assessor must make the grading decision. The independent assessor must assess the presentation and answers to questions holistically when deciding the grade.

The independent assessor must keep accurate records of the assessment. They must record:

  • the KSBs demonstrated
  • the apprentice’s answers to questions
  • the KSBs demonstrated in answers to questions
  • the grade achieved

Assessment location

The presentation with questions must take place in a suitable venue selected by the EPAO for example, the EPAO’s or employer’s premises. The presentation with questions should take place in a quiet room, free from distractions and influence.

The presentation with questions can be conducted by video conferencing. The EPAO must have processes in place to verify the identity of the apprentice and ensure the apprentice is not being aided.

Question and resource development

The EPAO must develop a purpose-built assessment specification and question bank. It is recommended this is done in consultation with employers of this occupation. The EPAO must maintain the security and confidentiality of EPA materials when consulting with employers. The assessment specification and question bank must be reviewed at least once a year to ensure they remain fit-for-purpose.

The assessment specification must be relevant to the occupation and demonstrate how to assess the KSBs mapped to this assessment method. The EPAO must ensure that questions are refined and developed to a high standard. The questions must be unpredictable. A question bank of sufficient size will support this.

The EPAO must ensure that the apprentice has a different set of questions in the case of re-sits or re-takes.

The EPAO must produce the following materials to support the presentation with questions:

  • independent assessor EPA materials which include:
    • training materials
    • administration materials
    • moderation and standardisation materials
    • guidance materials
    • grading guidance
    • question bank
  • EPA guidance for the apprentice and the employer

The EPAO must ensure that the EPA materials are subject to quality assurance procedures including standardisation and moderation.

Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.

Overview

In the professional discussion, an independent assessor and apprentice have a formal two-way conversation. It gives the apprentice the opportunity to demonstrate the KSBs mapped to this assessment method.

The apprentice can refer to and illustrate their answers with evidence from their portfolio of evidence.

Rationale

This assessment method is being used because:

  • it allows the apprentice to be assessed against KSBs that may not naturally occur as part of a case study or presentation
  • it allows the apprentice to show case their depth of understanding relating to the KSBs
  • it allows the independent assessor to consider the context and sector that the apprentice operates within, giving flexibility to ensure that all the KSBs can be assessed appropriately
  • it is cost effective, and it allows consideration of the potential need to conduct the EPA remotely.

Delivery

The professional discussion must be structured to give the apprentice the opportunity to demonstrate the KSBs mapped to this assessment method to the highest available grade.

An independent assessor must conduct and assess the professional discussion.

The purpose is to assess the apprentice’s competence against the following themes:

  • Infrastructure and governance
  • Financial management
  • Procurement and supply chain outcomes
  • Leadership and management of procurement and the supply chain
  • Sustainability
  • Development of the team and individual

The EPAO must give an apprentice 2 weeks' notice of the professional discussion.

The independent assessor must have at least 2 weeks to review the supporting documentation.

The apprentice must have access to their portfolio of evidence during the professional discussion.

The apprentice can refer to and illustrate their answers with evidence from their portfolio of evidence however, the portfolio of evidence is not directly assessed.

The professional discussion must last for 90 minutes. The independent assessor can increase the time of the professional discussion by up to 10%. This time is to allow the apprentice to respond to a question if necessary.

The independent assessor must ask at least 8 questions. The independent assessor must use the questions from the EPAO’s question bank.

The independent assessor must make the grading decision.

The independent assessor must keep accurate records of the assessment. They must record:

  • the apprentice’s answers to questions
  • the KSBs demonstrated in answers to questions
  • the grade achieved 

Assessment location

The professional discussion must take place in a suitable venue selected by the EPAO for example, the EPAO’s or employer’s premises.

The professional discussion can be conducted by video conferencing. The EPAO must have processes in place to verify the identity of the apprentice and ensure the apprentice is not being aided.

The professional discussion should take place in a quiet room, free from distractions and influence.

Question and resource development

The EPAO must develop a purpose-built assessment specification and question bank. It is recommended this is done in consultation with employers of this occupation. The EPAO must maintain the security and confidentiality of EPA materials when consulting with employers. The assessment specification and question bank must be reviewed at least once a year to ensure they remain fit-for-purpose.

The assessment specification must be relevant to the occupation and demonstrate how to assess the KSBs mapped to this assessment method. The EPAO must ensure that questions are refined and developed to a high standard. The questions must be unpredictable. A question bank of sufficient size will support this.

The EPAO must ensure that the apprentice has a different set of questions in the case of re-sits or re-takes.

The EPAO must produce the following materials to support the professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.:

  • independent assessor assessment materials which include:
    • training materials
    • administration materials
    • moderation and standardisation materials
    • guidance materials
    • grading guidance
    • question bank
  • EPA guidance for the apprentice and the employer

The EPAO must ensure that the EPA materials are subject to quality assurance procedures including standardisation and moderation.

Case study test

Overview

In the case study test, the apprentice answers questions in a controlled and invigilated environment. It gives the apprentice the opportunity to demonstrate the knowledge mapped to this assessment method.

The case study can be delivered at Study Centres, Exam Venues (internal invigilation) or via Remote Invigilation (external invigilation) at home or at a place of work. The subject of the case study is different for each exam period, and currently there are four exam periods throughout a 12 month period. The case study involves the apprentice being presented with two essay style questions with each covering one learning objective (Learning objectives 1.0 and 2.0).

Details of these are as follows:

Learning objective 1.0 Understand the changing needs and requirements for procurement and supply 1.1 Assess what the future strategic procurement and supply function will look like 1.2 Contrast the future skills and expectations of strategic procurement and supply leaders 1.3 Contrast the influence of emerging business and markets on the procurement and supply function

Learning objective 2.0 Understand the future challenges for the procurement and supply profession 2.1 Evaluate the emerging role and influence of innovation and technology on the profession 2.2 Assess the changing boundaries and shape of the profession 2.3 Evaluate future challenges for the profession

Long answer questions (LAQs) are open-ended questions. LAQs are used to assess depth of knowledge in a test. LAQs need an extended written response or an evaluative answer.

Rationale

This assessment method is being used because:

  • It provides an opportunity to test the apprentice’s ability to diagnose procurement and supply situations and identify appropriate outcomes. This is part of the final exam for the CIPS L6 Professional Diploma in Procurement and Supply.
  • It complements the other two assessment methods. In the professional discussion, the apprentice must relate their answers to their real-work experience, and the presentation with questions involves fact-based knowledge and skills recall. This third method of assessment provides for assurance of competency by testing the apprentice’s reactions to detailed and hypothetical circumstances.
  • It is delivered as an online case study test exam, recognising this is the senior level to the occupation, and employers’ own experiences that apprentice senior procurement and supply professionals will be suited to answering questions about case scenarios.

Delivery


The case study test must be structured to give the apprentice the opportunity to demonstrate the knowledge mapped to this assessment method to the highest available grade.

The test must be computer based.

The apprentice must be given at least 2 weeks’ notice of the date and time of the test.

The test must consist of 2 long answer questions. Long answer questions need a written response. Responses to LAQs may be multiple lines, an approximate word count (such as 100 words), multiple paragraphs. This should be an extended writing opportunity for higher marked questions.

Test administration

The apprentice must have 120 minutes to complete the test.

The test is closed book which means that the apprentice cannot refer to reference books or materials whilst taking the test.

The test must be taken in the presence of an invigilator who is the responsibility of the EPAO. The EPAO must have an invigilation policy setting out how the test must be conducted. It must state the ratio of apprentices to invigilators for the setting and allow the test to take place in a secure way.

The EPAO must verify the apprentice’s identity and ensure invigilation of the apprentice for example, with 360-degree cameras and screen sharing facilities.

The EPAO is responsible for the security of the test including the arrangements for on-line testing. The EPAO must ensure that their security arrangements maintain the validity and reliability of the test.

Marking

The case study test must be marked by an independent assessor or marker employed by CIPS. They must follow a marking scheme produced by CIPS. Marking by computer is allowed where question type supports this.

CIPS have a marking scheme for this assessment method as follows:

  • Fail (the individual doesn’t meet the pass criteria) – 24 marks or less
  • Pass - individual has achieved 25-29 marks
  • Merit – individual has achieved 30-37 marks
  • Distinction – individual has achieved 38 or more marks

CIPS is responsible for overseeing the marking of the case study test. CIPS must ensure standardisation and the moderation of the case study test. CIPS must notify the EPAO of the results of the case study test.

Any incorrect or missing answers get zero marks.

Assessment location

The apprentice must take the test in a suitably controlled and invigilated environment that is a quiet room, free from distractions and influence. CIPS must check the venue is suitable.

The test could take place remotely if the appropriate technology and systems are in place to prevent malpractice.

Question and resource development

CIPS must develop a purpose-built assessment specification and question bank. It is recommended this is done in consultation with employers of this occupation. CIPS should maintain the security and confidentiality of EPA materials when consulting with employers. The assessment specification and question bank must be reviewed at least once a year to ensure they remain fit-for-purpose.    

The assessment specification must be relevant to the occupation and demonstrate how to assess the KSBs mapped to this assessment method. CIPS must ensure that questions are refined and developed to a high standard. The questions must be unpredictable. A question bank of sufficient size will support this.  

CIPS must ensure that the apprentice has a different set of questions in the case of re-sits or re-takes.

CIPS must produce the following materials to support the test:

  • independent assessor assessment materials which include:
    • training materials
    • administration materials
    • moderation and standardisation materials
    • guidance materials
    • grading guidance
    • test specification
    • sample test and mark schemes
    • live tests and mark schemes
    • question bank
  • EPA guidance for the apprentice and the employer

CIPS must ensure that the EPA materials are subject to quality assurance procedures including standardisation and moderation.

Grading

Presentation with questions

Theme
KSBs
Pass
Apprentice has achieved
Distinction
Apprentice has achieved
Procurement and supply chain outcomes
K18 K23 S10 S14 B3

Takes responsibility for delivering supply chain improvements based on their analysis of the resilience and vulnerabilities of their supply chain networks (K18, S14, B3).

Explains their approach to contract development and decision-making with reference to their analysis and use of research findings and benchmarking methods (K23, S10).

 

Evidence how their recommendation for improvement has delivered positive outcomes for the organisation (S14).

Stakeholder engagement
K8 K17 S6 B6

Explains how they have managed conflicting stakeholder objectives by working collaboratively with others to reach a positive outcome (K8, B6).

Explains how they have used influencing and negotiating skills with internal clients or stakeholders to achieve a positive outcome with contract and on-going supplier management including exit strategies (K17, S6).

 

Justifies their approach to developing and maintaining collaborative stakeholder relationships including how this has contributed to effective exit strategies (K8, K17, B6).

Financial management
K12 S16

Describes the implications of the financial management techniques they use for procurement, explaining how they meet regulatory requirements and sustainability guidelines (K12, S16).

N/A

Local, global, and sustainable sourcing strategies
K3 K16 S11 S17 B1

Describes the strategies they use to identify routes to market with reference to how they develop ethical and sustainable procurement practice and support the futureproofing of their organisation (K3, K16, S11, S17, B1).

N/A

Innovation tools and techniques
K19 K26 S4 S19

Identifies the extent to which software, quality systems, improvement methodologies, and project management tools, including emerging technology, support decision-making and project delivery (K19, K26, K27, K28, S4, S19).

Demonstrates a strong understanding of a range of emergent technologies and how they can benefit their organisation (K26).

Negotiation and risk management
S1 S5 B4

Negotiates innovative and creative commercial solutions with stakeholders while remaining focussed on details and managing any risks (S1, S5, B4).

Justifies the approach they have taken when negotiating with stakeholders to create an innovative commercial solution (S1, S5, B4).

Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.

Theme
KSBs
Pass
Apprentices must demonstrate all the pass descriptors
Distinction
Apprentices must demonstrate all the pass descriptors and all of the distinction descriptors
Infrastructure and governance
K7 K10 K14

Interprets the regulatory and legislative practices and procedures that impact on procurement and supply chain management and the importance of data integrity and cyber security in the protection of commercial information (K7, K14).

Describe the change management concepts and methods of implementing change used within the organisation (K10).

 

Evaluates the extent to which the methods used support change, suggesting improvements (K10).

Financial management
K20 S21

Optimises procurement spend while meeting objectives and maintaining quality (K20, S21).

 

Critically evaluates their use of pricing and payment mechanisms and how this has improved procurement spend and delivery of objectives (K20, S21).

Procurement and supply chain outcomes
K6 K13 K15 K21 S3 S7 S15 B5

Explains the effectiveness of the approaches and techniques they used in preparing commercial and procurement guidance for a business case. (K6, K21, S15).

Explains how they have successfully developed and implemented a category strategy (K15, S3).

Analyses their response to a contractual failure, explaining how they implemented and adapted intervention strategies and used systems and technology to support improvement. (K13, S7, B5).

 

Justifies the category strategy used and improvements made to the procurement planning process whilst making recommendations for further change (S3, S15).

Leadership and management of procurement and the supply chain
K1 K4 K5 K22 K25 S2 S9 S12

Influences the decision-making process using impact analysis and resolving conflict and disputes, to maintain the competitiveness of their organisation (K1, K22, S2).

Describe the role of the procurement cycle and how they use it to deliver and align with the organisation's strategy (K4, S9).

Justifies their approach to leading on due diligence in supplier selection and contract award, including their use of quality management systems and improvement methodologies. (K5, K25, S12).

 

Critically analyses their use of the procurement and supply chain cycle and strategies and the longer-term impact of these on aligning with the overall organisational strategy (K4, S9).

Sustainability
S13 S18

Delivers high performance strategies, underpinned by horizon scanning and conceptualisation, that transform procurement services and combine value and sustainability (S13, S18).

Critically evaluates their use of horizon scanning in projects which have transformed the procurement services of their organisation (S13, S18).

Development of the team and individual
K24 S8 S20 S22 B2

Identifies learning and development needs, and improvement opportunities, for themselves, stakeholders, and the team, to enable both personal and professional development (K24, S20, B2).

Evaluates why they coach and mentor individuals and how they have used this to identify further development opportunities which lead to improvements in the procurement function (S8, S22).

 

Critically analyses stakeholder needs and expectations to predict and influence improvements in the procurement function (S8, S20).

Case study test

Theme
KSBs
Pass
Apprentices must demonstrate the following:
Merit
Apprentices must demonstrate the following:
Distinction
Apprentices must demonstrate the following:
Case study test
K2 K9 K11

Apprentice has achieved 25 - 29 marks.

Apprentice has achieved 30 – 37 marks.

Apprentices has acheived 38 or more marks.

Overall EPA grading

Performance in the EPA determines the apprenticeship grade of:

    • fail
    • pass
    • distinction

An independent assessor must individually grade the: presentation with questions, professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence. and case study test in line with this EPA plan.

The EPAO must combine the individual assessment method grades to determine the overall EPA grade.

If the apprentice fails one or more assessment methods, they will be awarded an overall fail. 

To achieve an overall pass, the apprentice must achieve at least a pass in all the assessment methods or a merit in the case study test. To achieve an overall EPA distinction, the apprentice must achieve a distinction in both assessment methods.

Grades from individual assessment methods must be combined in the following way to determine the grade of the EPA overall.

Presentation with questions Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence. Case study test Overall Grading
Any grade Fail Fail Fail
Fail Any grade Fail Fail
Any grade Any grade Fail Fail
Pass Pass Pass Pass
Distinction Pass Pass Pass
Pass Distinction Pass Pass
Pass Pass Distinction Pass
Pass Pass Merit Pass
Distinction Distinction Merit Pass
Distinction Distinction Distinction Distinction

Re-sits and re-takes

If the apprentice fails one or more assessment methods, (including the CIPS case study test), they can take a re-sit or a re-take at their employer’s discretion. The apprentice’s employer needs to agree that a re-sit or re-take is appropriate. A re-sit does not need further learning, whereas a re-take does.

The apprentice should have a supportive action plan to prepare for a re-sit or a re-take.

The employer and EPAO agree the timescale for a re-sit or re-take. A re-sit is typically taken within 2 months of the EPA outcome notification. The timescale for a re-take is dependent on how much re-training is required and is typically taken within 3 months of the EPA outcome notification.

Failed assessment methods must be re-sat or re-taken within a 6-month period from the EPA outcome notification, otherwise the entire EPA will need to be re-sat or re-taken in full.

Re-sits and re-takes are not offered to an apprentice wishing to move from pass to a higher grade.

The apprentice will get a maximum EPA grade of pass for a re-sit or re-take, unless the EPAO determines there are exceptional circumstances.

Roles and responsibilities

Roles Responsibilities

Apprentice

As a minimum, the apprentice should:

  • participate in and complete on-programme training to meet the KSBs as outlined in the occupational standard for a minimum of 12 months
  • complete the required amount of off-the-job training specified by the apprenticeship funding rules and as arranged by the employer and training provider
  • understand the purpose and importance of EPA
  • meet the gateway requirements
  • undertake the EPA

Employer

As a minimum, the apprentice's employer must:

  • select the EPAO and training provider
  • work with the training provider (where applicable) to support the apprentice in the workplace and to provide the opportunities for the apprentice to develop the KSBs
  • arrange and support off-the-job training to be undertaken by the apprentice
  • decide when the apprentice is working at or above the occupational standard and is ready for EPA
  • ensure that supporting evidence required at the gateway is submitted in line with this EPA plan
  • liaise with the training provider and EPAO to ensure the EPA is booked in a timely manner

Post-gateway, the employer must:

  • confirm arrangements with the EPAO for the EPA (who, when, where) in a timely manner (including providing access to any employer-specific documentation as required, for example company policies)
  • ensure that the EPA is scheduled with the EPAO for a date and time which allows the opportunity for the apprentice to be assessed against the KSBs
  • remain independent from the delivery of the EPA
  • ensure the apprentice is given sufficient time away from regular duties to prepare for, and complete all post-gateway elements of the EPA, and that any required supervision during this time (as stated within this EPA plan) is in place
  • where the apprentice is assessed in the workplace, ensure that the apprentice has access to the resources used on a regular basis
  • pass the certificate to the apprentice upon receipt from the EPAO

EPAO

As a minimum, the EPAO must: 

  • conform to the requirements of this EPA plan and deliver its requirements in a timely manner
  • conform to the requirements of the register of end-point assessment organisations (RoEPAO)
  • conform to the requirements of the external quality assurance provider (EQAP) for this apprenticeship
  • understand the occupational standard
  • make the EPA contractual arrangements, including agreeing the price of the EPA
  • develop and produce assessment materials as detailed for each assessment method in this EPA plan
  • appoint qualified and competent independent assessors in line with the requirements of this EPA plan to conduct assessments and oversee their working
  • appoint administrators (and invigilators where required) to administer the EPA
  • provide training for independent assessors in terms of good assessment practice, operating the assessment tools and grading
  • provide information, advice, guidance and documentation to enable apprentices, employers and training providers to prepare for the EPA
  • confirm all gateway requirements have been met as quickly as possible
  • arrange for the EPA to take place, in consultation with the employer
  • ensure that the apprentice has access to the required resources and liaise with the employer to agree this if necessary, where the apprentice is not assessed in the workplace
  • develop and provide assessment recording documentation to ensure a clear and auditable process is in place for providing assessment decisions and feedback to stakeholders
  • have no direct connection with the apprentice, their employer or training provider in all instances; there must be no conflict of interest
  • have policies and procedures for internal quality assurance (IQA), and maintain records of IQA activity and moderation for external quality assurance (EQA) purposes
  • deliver induction training for independent assessors, and for invigilators and markers (where used)
  • undertake standardisation activity on this apprenticeship for an independent assessor before they conduct an EPA for the first time, if the EPA is updated and periodically (a minimum of annually)
  • manage invigilation of the apprentice to maintain security of the assessment in line with the EPAO’s malpractice policy
  • verify the identity of the apprentice
  • use language in the development and delivery of the EPA that is appropriate to the level of the occupational standard

Independent assessor

As a minimum, an independent assessor must:

  • have the competence to assess the apprentice at the level of this apprenticeship and hold any required qualifications and experience in line with the requirements of the independent assessor as detailed in the IQA section of this EPA plan
  • understand the occupational standard and the requirements of this EPA
  • have, maintain and be able to evidence, up-to-date knowledge and expertise of the occupation
  • deliver the end-point assessment in-line with this EPA plan
  • comply with the IQA requirements of the EPAO
  • have no direct connection or conflict of interest with the apprentice, their employer or training provider; in all instances; there must be no conflict of interest
  • attend induction training
  • attend standardisation events when they start working for the EPAO, before they conduct an EPA for the first time and a minimum of annually for this apprenticeship 
  • assess each assessment method, as determined by the EPA plan
  • assess the KSBs assigned to each assessment method, as shown in the mapping of KSBs to assessment methods in this EPA plan
  • make the grading decisions
  • record and report assessment outcome decisions, for each apprentice, following instructions and using assessment recording documentation provided by the EPAO, in a timely manner
  • use language in the development and delivery of the EPA that is appropriate to the level of the occupational standard
  • mark open (constructed) test answers accurately according to the EPAO’s mark scheme and procedures

Training provider

As a minimum, the training provider must:

  • work with the employer and support the apprentice during the off-the-job training to provide the opportunities to develop the KSBs as listed in the occupational standard
  • conduct training covering the KSBs agreed as part of the Commitment Statement or the Individual Learning Plan
  • monitor the apprentice’s progress during any training provider led on-programme learning
  • advise the employer, upon request, on the apprentice’s readiness for EPA
  • remain independent from the delivery of the EPA

Marker

As a minimum, the marker must:

  • attend induction training as directed by the EPAO
  • have no direct connection or conflict of interest with the apprentice, their employer or training provider in all instances
  • mark test answers in line with the EPAO’s mark scheme and procedures

Invigilator

As a minimum, the invigilator must:

  • attend induction training as directed by the EPAO
  • have no direct connection or conflict of interest with the apprentice, their employer or training provider in all instances
  • invigilate and supervise apprentices during tests and in breaks during assessment methods to prevent malpractice in accordance with the EPAO’s invigilation procedures

Reasonable adjustments

The EPAO must have reasonable adjustments arrangements for the EPA.

This should include:

  • how an apprentice qualifies for reasonable adjustment
  • what reasonable adjustments may be made

Adjustments must maintain the validity, reliability and integrity of the EPA as outlined in this EPA plan.

Internal quality assurance

Internal quality assurance refers to how the EPAO ensures valid, consistent and reliable EPA decisions. The EPAO must adhere to the requirements within the roles and responsibilities section:

The EPAO must also:

  • have quality assurance systems and procedures that ensure fair, reliable and consistent EPA regardless of employer, place, time or independent assessor
  • appoint independent assessors who are competent to deliver the EPA and who:
    • have recent relevant experience of the occupation or sector to at least occupational level 6 gained in the last 3 years or significant experience of the occupation or sector
  • operate induction training for anyone involved in the delivery or assessment of the EPA
  • provide training for independent assessors in good assessment practice, operating the assessment tools and making grading decisions
  • provide ongoing training for markers and invigilators
  • provide standardisation activity for this apprenticeship standard for all independent assessors:
    • before they conduct an EPA for the first time
    • if the EPA is updated
    • periodically as appropriate (a minimum of annually)
  • conduct effective moderation of EPA decisions and grades
  • conduct appeals where required, according to the EPAO’s appeals procedure, reviewing and making final decisions on EPA decisions and grades
  • have no direct connection with the apprentice, their employer or training provider.

Value for money

Affordability of the EPA will be aided by using at least some of the following:

  • completing applicable assessment methods online (for example computer-based assessment)
  • utilising digital remote platforms to conduct applicable assessment methods
  • using the employer’s premises
  • conducting assessment methods on the same day

Professional recognition

This apprenticeship aligns with:

Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply for Membership

The apprenticeship will either wholly or partially satisfy the requirements for registration at this level.

The requirements for Membership are:

  • successful completion of the CIPS Level 4 Diploma or the Level 4 Commercial Procurement and Supply apprenticeship
  • successful completion of the CIPS Level 5 Advanced Diploma
  • successful completion of the CIPS Level 6 Professional Diploma or the Level 6 Senior Procurement and Supply Chain Professional apprenticeship.

KSB mapping table

Knowledge Assessment methods
K1

Competitive advantage and how that adds value for their organisation and supply chain.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.
K2

Strategic risk management techniques that drive appropriate due diligence and whole-life risk management.

Back to Grading
Case study test
K3

Responsible procurement expertise covering ethical/social, environmental, and economic factors.

Back to Grading
Presentation with questions
K4

Procurement cycle and its role in delivering the organisation’s strategy.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.
K5

Concepts of leadership and management in procurement.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.
K6

How a business case is developed, and the roles of stakeholders involved.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.
K7

Relevant regulatory and legislative requirements such as data protection, modern slavery and its application for procurement and supply chain management, competition, and employment.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.
K8

Approaches to managing strategic stakeholder relationships.

Back to Grading
Presentation with questions
K9

The benefits, risks and implications of globalised supply chains and country-specific risks and challenges.

Back to Grading
Case study test
K10

Change management concepts, and methods of implementing change within the organisation.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.
K11

How to use horizon scanning to identify the current and future needs of the sector and procurement landscape.

Back to Grading
Case study test
K12

Financial management techniques and implications for procurement.

Back to Grading
Presentation with questions
K13

Systems and technology used to support and improve procurement planning such as demand management, optimisation of inventory and supplier performance management.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.
K14

Importance of data integrity and cyber security to protect commercial information.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.
K15

The use of, and the continuing development, of Category Management.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.
K16

The use of collaborative and competitive strategies to identify routes to market.

Back to Grading
Presentation with questions
K17

Contract and on-going supplier relationship management including exit strategies.

Back to Grading
Presentation with questions
K18

Sustainability and resilience of supply chain networks.

Back to Grading
Presentation with questions
K19

Project management tools and techniques.

Back to Grading
Presentation with questions
K20

Pricing and payment mechanisms in contracting.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.
K21

Commercial negotiation approaches and techniques.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.
K22

Conflict management and dispute resolution.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.
K23

Contract development including legal considerations.

Back to Grading
Presentation with questions
K24

The continuous development requirements and training needs of their team.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.
K25

Quality management systems and improvement methodologies.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.
K26

Software tools used to analyse, interpret, and evaluate intelligence to inform judgements and enable decision making.

Back to Grading
Presentation with questions
Skill Assessment methods
S1

Identify and apply a consistent approach to risk assessment.

Back to Grading
Presentation with questions
S2

Use impact analysis to influence the decision making process.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.
S3

Develop category strategies and implement them.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.
S4

Apply project management skills in order to lead projects for procurement.

Back to Grading
Presentation with questions
S5

Negotiate and challenge external stakeholders in order to create innovative commercial solutions.

Back to Grading
Presentation with questions
S6

Influence and persuade internal clients and stakeholders.

Back to Grading
Presentation with questions
S7

Create and implement intervention strategies to correct a contractual failure.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.
S8

Identify opportunities, and lead change to continually improve the procurement function.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.
S9

Able to align the procurement or functional strategy with the business strategy.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.
S10

Analyse, interpret and evaluate findings from qualitative and quantitative research and benchmarking methods to support the decision making process.

Back to Grading
Presentation with questions
S11

Deliver sustainable solutions which include corporate social responsibility factors.

Back to Grading
Presentation with questions
S12

Lead and be accountable for due diligence in supplier selection and contract award.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.
S13

Use horizon scanning and conceptualisation to deliver high performance strategies focusing on value and sustainable outcomes.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.
S14

Identify supply chain vulnerabilities and opportunities ensuring the delivery of supply chain improvements.

Back to Grading
Presentation with questions
S15

Prepare and provide commercial and procurement guidance for business cases for organisational approval.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.
S16

Apply and work within guidelines relating to sustainability, Governance and Regulatory compliance.

Back to Grading
Presentation with questions
S17

Develop sustainable procurement practices which allows the organisation to future proof themselves against changes in social, economic, and environmental factors.

Back to Grading
Presentation with questions
S18

Contribute to projects and the transformation of procurement services across organisational boundaries such as those impacted by sustainability and the UK Net Carbon Zero target.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.
S19

Identify emerging technology and software relevant to the procurement processes.

Back to Grading
Presentation with questions
S20

Lead and facilitate learning and continuous development for their stakeholders.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.
S21

Use quality management systems or improvement methodologies to optimise procurement spend and deliver procurement and supply chain objectives.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.
S22

Coach and mentor individuals within their business.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.
Behaviour Assessment methods
B1

Role models ethical behaviour and practices.

Back to Grading
Presentation with questions
B2

Seeks learning opportunities and continuous professional development.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.
B3

Takes responsibility, shows initiative and is organised.

Back to Grading
Presentation with questions
B4

Considers the “big” picture and the detail together.

Back to Grading
Presentation with questions
B5

Works flexibly and adapts to circumstances.

Back to Grading
Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.
B6

Works collaboratively with others across the organisation and external stakeholders.

Back to Grading
Presentation with questions

Mapping of KSBs to grade themes

Presentation with questions

KSBS GROUPED BY THEME Knowledge Skills Behaviour
Procurement and supply chain outcomes
K18 K23
S10 S14
B3

Sustainability and resilience of supply chain networks. (K18)

Contract development including legal considerations. (K23)

Analyse, interpret and evaluate findings from qualitative and quantitative research and benchmarking methods to support the decision making process. (S10)

Identify supply chain vulnerabilities and opportunities ensuring the delivery of supply chain improvements. (S14)

Takes responsibility, shows initiative and is organised. (B3)

Stakeholder engagement
K8 K17
S6
B6

Approaches to managing strategic stakeholder relationships. (K8)

Contract and on-going supplier relationship management including exit strategies. (K17)

Influence and persuade internal clients and stakeholders. (S6)

Works collaboratively with others across the organisation and external stakeholders. (B6)

Financial management
K12
S16

Financial management techniques and implications for procurement. (K12)

Apply and work within guidelines relating to sustainability, Governance and Regulatory compliance. (S16)

None

Local, global, and sustainable sourcing strategies
K3 K16
S11 S17
B1

Responsible procurement expertise covering ethical/social, environmental, and economic factors. (K3)

The use of collaborative and competitive strategies to identify routes to market. (K16)

Deliver sustainable solutions which include corporate social responsibility factors. (S11)

Develop sustainable procurement practices which allows the organisation to future proof themselves against changes in social, economic, and environmental factors. (S17)

Role models ethical behaviour and practices. (B1)

Innovation tools and techniques
K19 K26
S4 S19

Project management tools and techniques. (K19)

Software tools used to analyse, interpret, and evaluate intelligence to inform judgements and enable decision making. (K26)

Apply project management skills in order to lead projects for procurement. (S4)

Identify emerging technology and software relevant to the procurement processes. (S19)

None

Negotiation and risk management

S1 S5
B4

None

Identify and apply a consistent approach to risk assessment. (S1)

Negotiate and challenge external stakeholders in order to create innovative commercial solutions. (S5)

Considers the “big” picture and the detail together. (B4)

Professional discussion underpinned by a portfolio of evidence.

KSBS GROUPED BY THEME Knowledge Skills Behaviour
Infrastructure and governance
K7 K10 K14

Relevant regulatory and legislative requirements such as data protection, modern slavery and its application for procurement and supply chain management, competition, and employment. (K7)

Change management concepts, and methods of implementing change within the organisation. (K10)

Importance of data integrity and cyber security to protect commercial information. (K14)

None

None

Financial management
K20
S21

Pricing and payment mechanisms in contracting. (K20)

Use quality management systems or improvement methodologies to optimise procurement spend and deliver procurement and supply chain objectives. (S21)

None

Procurement and supply chain outcomes
K6 K13 K15 K21
S3 S7 S15
B5

How a business case is developed, and the roles of stakeholders involved. (K6)

Systems and technology used to support and improve procurement planning such as demand management, optimisation of inventory and supplier performance management. (K13)

The use of, and the continuing development, of Category Management. (K15)

Commercial negotiation approaches and techniques. (K21)

Develop category strategies and implement them. (S3)

Create and implement intervention strategies to correct a contractual failure. (S7)

Prepare and provide commercial and procurement guidance for business cases for organisational approval. (S15)

Works flexibly and adapts to circumstances. (B5)

Leadership and management of procurement and the supply chain
K1 K4 K5 K22 K25
S2 S9 S12

Competitive advantage and how that adds value for their organisation and supply chain. (K1)

Procurement cycle and its role in delivering the organisation’s strategy. (K4)

Concepts of leadership and management in procurement. (K5)

Conflict management and dispute resolution. (K22)

Quality management systems and improvement methodologies. (K25)

Use impact analysis to influence the decision making process. (S2)

Able to align the procurement or functional strategy with the business strategy. (S9)

Lead and be accountable for due diligence in supplier selection and contract award. (S12)

None

Sustainability

S13 S18

None

Use horizon scanning and conceptualisation to deliver high performance strategies focusing on value and sustainable outcomes. (S13)

Contribute to projects and the transformation of procurement services across organisational boundaries such as those impacted by sustainability and the UK Net Carbon Zero target. (S18)

None

Development of the team and individual
K24
S8 S20 S22
B2

The continuous development requirements and training needs of their team. (K24)

Identify opportunities, and lead change to continually improve the procurement function. (S8)

Lead and facilitate learning and continuous development for their stakeholders. (S20)

Coach and mentor individuals within their business. (S22)

Seeks learning opportunities and continuous professional development. (B2)

Case study test

KSBS GROUPED BY THEME Knowledge Skills Behaviour
Case study test
K2 K9 K11

Strategic risk management techniques that drive appropriate due diligence and whole-life risk management. (K2)

The benefits, risks and implications of globalised supply chains and country-specific risks and challenges. (K9)

How to use horizon scanning to identify the current and future needs of the sector and procurement landscape. (K11)

None

None

Employers involved in creating the standard: Yorkshire & Humberside Police, Wilkinsons Retail, YPO, East of England LGA, Virgin Atlantic Airways, NHS Digital, The Procurement Academy, Darlington College, North Eastern UPC (1), Howdens Joinery, Nottingham University Hospital NHS Trust, Murphy Group, Aggregate Industries UK Limited, ASOS, Aviva, Basildon & Thurrock University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (L) (Health), Bouygues E&S, Centre Point, City of London, Exeter County Council, Gather & Gather, Health Education England (HEE), Kings College NHS Foundation Trust, Mitie, Newcastle Home (National Charity), NHS Salisbury Trust, NHS Salisbury Trust (1), Potl.com, Public Health England, RSA Group, Sainsbury’s, Skanska, Worcestershire County Council, Chartered Institute for Procurement and Supply, Devon County Council, Espon and St. Helier University Trust, 10. Gloucestershire Health and Care NHS Foundation Trust, Hounslow Council, NHS St Georges, SIG UK Training, St Helens, Wokingham Borough Council, ABA Procurement Ltd, Charities Aid Foundation (S) (Charity), London Metropolitan University, Derby University, DHL, Guy’s & St. Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust, Kent County Council, Laing O' Rourke, Pro Quest Consulting, Rank, South Gloucestershire & Stroud College, SR Supply Chain Consultants Ltd

Version log

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