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6 November 2023

Great news for the Printing Industry: The consortium and BPIF Champion the New Level 3 Print Apprenticeship Standard

Great news for the Printing Industry: The consortium and BPIF Champion the New Level 3 Print Apprenticeship Standard

The latest version of the Level 3 Print Technician Standard has received final approval from the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education (IfATE) and marks a significant milestone. Modern Apprenticeship Standards are vitally important in enabling the sector to maintain its apprenticeship training programmes.  This revised standard broadens the scope of learning and skills development for the apprentice ensuring that your business benefits from being able to attract and train apprentices for the future.

This achievement was made possible through the collaborative efforts of an industry consortium, spearheaded by the British Printing Industries Federation (BPIF). The consortium was made up of the following companies: De La Rue, Westrock-MPS, CDS, CDi, Unite the Union, Ryedale Group Ltd, Page Bros Group, The Printing Charity, Graphic Packaging International, Label Apeel Ltd, UK Research & Innovation, Reach Printing Services and BPIF. James Buffoni of Ryedale Group Ltd led the consortium and was supported on the core activity by Ian Wilton, formerly of CDS and Charles Jarrold at the BPIF.

The key changes that have been made to the standard are:

·     The addition of duties, this is essentially a detailed job description

·     Increase in the number of Knowledge, Skills and Behaviours (KSBs) statements required by the apprentice

·     More comprehensive KSB statements

·     More rigorous assessment plan

This has been a lengthy process, which involved many negotiations with IfATE. The Consortium worked to ensure that the employers’ needs were addressed in a way that both met IFATE’s requirements, and the particular skills needs of the sector into the future.  James Buffoni, Chair of the Consortium says ‘Skills and attracting new people into the industry is a perennial challenge, modern Apprenticeship Standards are important both to ensure employers have the skills for the future and to ensure our sector is an attractive career choice.’ 

 The consortium also needed to work to ensure that Government understood that the skills needs of print and packaging are critical to the future success of the sector, and could not be addressed within the overall government pressure to unify apprenticeships into generic machine operations or manufacturing.

This new apprenticeship standard will be available from 1st November 2023. Please contact your training provider for more information.

The Print Technician standard is a core with options standard, the options being pre-press, press or finishing. The Technician is your number 1, the senior person in each of these areas.

The print technician apprenticeship standard supports occupations in the print and graphics communication sector and may be found in printing, packaging, creative and design industries. This can include:

  • Magazines, newspapers, books, and posters
  • Cartons, packaging, labels, signs, and banners 
  • Personal gifting such as calendars, photo books and greeting cards
  • Functional printing onto materials other than paper, such as plastics, electronic circuits, textiles, and a wide range of other materials
  • Physical printed security products such as passports, ID cards, bank notes and credit cards. 

For any further information please contact Ursula Daly, BPIF at [email protected]

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