Pearson Head of Apprenticeship Services in United Kingdom

Head of Apprenticeship Services


London/Oxford based

Learner at the heart

Pearson is aglobal education companythat helps people around the world to make progress in their lives through learning. With a rich heritage that combines 150 years of experience in publishing with the latest learning technology and digital services, we help people to learn whatever, wherever and however they choose. We are nowtransforming Pearsonto accelerate our activity in digital learning, education services and emerging markets. This will enable us to make a lasting impact in helping to solve some of the most important challenges in global education.

Why we need you

We believe education is a vital force that can empower people, help them to reach their potential and contribute to more connected communities, all around the world. Our strength comes from our outstanding people; our strong relationships in the education world; our expertise in using technology to help people learn; our global footprint and local reach; and our position as a profitable, global company with a unifying sense of purpose.

About the job

Job Purpose:

Pearson has a long and successful history in the provision of qualifications and other related services to meet the needs of apprenticeship programmes delivered by training providers, colleges and employers.

At this time of significant reform in the apprenticeship system in England, driven by employers and an evolved policy and funding environment, we need to ensure that we continue to be the leading brand and are at the forefront of providing innovative solutions to the opportunities that are arising.

These opportunities stem from trailblazer groups and their members and so it is critical that our engagement with trailblazers is prioritised. The opportunities do and have the potential to vary greatly, spanning qualifications, End Point Assessment and learning services, and will require an ability to tailor our services, eg Quality Assurance, qualifications and content, registration processes, e-learning, as closely as possible to the needs of our clients. The opportunities will continue to appear at short notice and require virtual teams from across the organisation to be created to lead and manage our response.

Critical to the success of this post is the need to work with teams from across the BTEC & Apprenticeships division and beyond, particularly Product Management, Sales and PQS.

Key Accountabilities:

  • To lead on the development and management of the strategy for the engagement of trailblazer groups ensuring alignment of key teams and the needs of the trailblazer groups and their members

  • To own development of the overarching proposition for apprenticeships End Point Assessment (EPA)

  • To manage, working with cross business teams (virtual tender teams), the pipeline of tender opportunities that arise from trailblazer groups, drawing on the proposition developed as part of the overarching strategy

  • To ensure, through leading and supporting teams, the submission of high-quality propositions to meet opportunities arising from trailblazer groups and formal tenders

  • To ensure, where successful, transition of secured contracts to account management, with support.

  • To lead, working with teams across Pearson, the delivery of continuous service improvements through the lifecycle of tenders that have been won to deliver value back to customers the longer they stay with Pearson

  • Contribute to the continual improvement of how we do things as part of the senior management team for BTEC and Apprenticeships division and Strategic Relationships team.

Main Responsibilities:

1. Develop and manage market insight, business strategy and propositions:

  • Work with the Director of Strategic Relationships, Director of Product Management and Directors of Sales (FE and WBL) to develop and manage the strategy for the engagement of trailblazer groups and prioritisation of opportunities that arise, including identification of sectors and specifically occupational areas for growth

  • Manage the pipeline of varying opportunities, eg spanning qualifications, End Point Assessment (EPA) and learning services, that arise from the engagement with trailblazer groups, their employer members and providers

  • Direct Sector Manager engagement with trailblazer groups when related to tender opportunities

  • Lead on the creation of EPA delivery models and propositions, with a predefined product and service offer for use within tender submissions

  • Work with PQS to ensure our EPA product and service offer is in line with customer needs and engaged with 3rd parties where appropriate to support delivery

  • Work with PQS on the engagement and management of new partnerships relating to our delivery of EPA services

  • Lead on tracking and sharing intelligence on our competitors’ approach to product and service offers in the apprenticeships market and through this define Pearson advantage

  • Work with Product Management, Sales and Marketing on the development and implementation of the strategy for the promotion of our over-arching apprenticeship product and service offer

  • Work with the Head of Sectors to ensure coherence in sector strategies across all market segments but particularly in the technical segments.

2. Manage the tender pipeline and submission of tenders against opportunities that arise from Trailblazer groups:

  • Manage the pipeline of tender opportunities that arise from trailblazer groups, working with Product Management, Sales and PQS

  • Lead with senior management across Pearson to ensure the teams that come together to complete bids that are aligned to the specification and internal business requirements

  • Ensure PQS engagement and agreement with tender opportunities that arise including capability and capacity to deliver, particularly EPA related

  • Coordinate the bid team activity to ensure submissions are managed in line with timelines and internal business process, eg senior management approval

  • Lead and/or support the creation of the final tender submission with the bid team, depending on the requirements of the brief and internal leadership

  • Where leading submissions, act as the point of contact for client, managing responses to follow-up questions with the bid team and ensuring all colleagues are briefed and prepared for follow-up presentations and discussions on our bids

  • Brief all appropriate teams on progress with bid submissions ensuring all challenges and risks are managed with support from leadership where required

  • Collate management data and report against the pipeline, ensuring visibility in OneCRM with periodic reporting to senior management on progress, financials, wins and lessons learnt

  • Support Sales with proposition development for new business, eg Sales team led work to engage the top 100 levy paying employers and pitching for new work.

3. Support the delivery and management of secured trailblazer tenders:

  • Where needed, work with account management (Sales) and senior execs in the governance of secured contracts and ensure alignment of internal Pearson teams to deliver our responsibilities under contract

  • Ensure, as part of transition of secured contracts to account management team a full internal briefing is completed

  • Support account management (Sales) to manage relationship with customers and partners throughout the delivery cycle

  • Manage internally facing contract managers (costed into large scale bids), who support account managers to deliver against a contract, manage internal risks to delivery with appropriate teams and report against delivery

  • Support account managers where contract data is required by the client, liaising with internal data teams as needed

  • Report internally our delivery against all contracts and manage challenges with appropriate teams, generating intelligence to support contract management working with data teams

  • Working with teams across Pearson, ensure the delivery of continuous service improvements through the lifecycle of tenders that have been won to deliver value back to the customer the longer the customer stays with Pearson.

4. Leadership and people management

The Head will:

  • Build and lead virtual teams to ensure a positive working culture, in support of Pearson UK strategy

  • Build and facilitate strong relationships with other parts of Pearson UK (e.g. PQS, Learning Services, Sales and Marketing)

  • Lead on departmental initiatives to deliver better service to our customers and learners, drive growth, develop commercial partnerships with stakeholders and other third parties, and influence major stakeholders such as IFA, DfE, SFA, and Ofqual

  • Establish a culture of continuous improvement in our relationships with tenderers (i.e. delivering value back to the customer through the lifecycle to support contract renewal)

  • Develop and contribute to other Heads resource plans and staff development plans to meet the requirements of our business strategy

  • Attract, recruit and retain the best people to work at Pearson where required.

About you

Desired leadership competencies:

  • Leadership, people management team building skills (including virtual team building skills)

  • Strategic thinking skills: the ability to think strategically, identify attractive market segments and key sources of competitive advantage, and to balance a strong commercial focus with regulatory and legal requirements, assessment reliability/validity and operational requirements to create solutions for customers that are practical and have competitive advantage

  • Bid management and development skills, working with virtual teams from across business units

  • Creative thinking and customer empathy: the ability to articulate new propositions based on customer needs

  • Relationship building: in particular, with customers, employers, professional bodies, commercial partners, government agencies and within Pearson

  • Communication, networking and influencing externally and internally (in particular to work effectively with colleagues in Pearson across different sites and within a matrix structure)

  • Commercial and financial planning skills: the ability to plan and monitor revenue and profit

  • Organisational and project management skills.

Pearson competencies:

  • Organisationally AgileProvides context for change to empower others to understand their roles and adapt quickly. Proactively seeks information to understand the reasons for change and adapts approach accordingly.

  • Influences without AuthorityIdentifies stakeholders, seeks input and actively listens to build, support and identify best solutions. Identifies stakeholders, seeks input and actively listens to build support and identify best solutions.

  • Prioritises and makes Effective DecisionsBreaks down work into manageable parts, assessing the priorities and schedule required to deliver on time. Ensures the quality of the data provided to analyse possible solutions and support effective decision making.

  • Build RelationshipsCreates and maintains relationships, internally and externally, to increase simplicity, efficiency and shared success. Proactively networks with other teams to discuss common issues and share knowledge.

  • Outcomes OrientedHas an in-depth understanding of stakeholder requirements (including learners and customers) and works in partnership with them to identify desired outcomes. Understands the intended outcomes of own work and how they contribute to Pearson’s broader objectives including customers and learners.

  • Continuously improvesChallenges the status quo where opportunities are identified. Demonstrates willingness and flexibility to adapt own approach to new ways of working to achieve improved outcomes.

  • Evidence InformedTranslates evidence into actionable insights that lead to improvements. Organises and analyses information (into meaningful / related areas) to form robust, evidence-based conclusions.

  • Commercially AwareInterprets internal / external business challenges and creates commercially practical and innovative improvements to products and services in response. Uses that knowledge to identify better ways of working to meet those goals.

  • Digitally FocusedUses insight into digital trends and patterns to inform decision making and to develop profitable products and services. Recognises the opportunities digital technology creates for Pearson to increase its reach, generate profitable business opportunities and create more effective products for its market.

  • Driven by Customer and Learner RequirementsTakes personal accountability for ensuring that customer and learner insights are used to deliver market leading products and experiences at every touch point. Makes decisions that have a positive impact on customer and learner issues for the benefit of Pearson overall.

London/Oxford based


Essential skills, qualifications and experience:

  • Qualified to degree level or equivalent

  • Experience of the apprenticeships landscape, related services and the broader UK education market and environment (e.g. colleges, private training providers, employers, professional bodies)

  • Track record of winning significant (£2m ) education service delivery contracts, ideally with colleges, training providers and employers.

Primary Location: United Kingdom

Job: Sales

Organization: Core

Employee Status: Regular Employee

Job Type: Standard

Shift: Day Job

Job Posting: Mar 8, 2017