An independent training provider for payroll and administration apprentices has achieved an ‘outstanding’ Ofsted rating for its first full inspection – six years after first offering apprenticeships.
Dudley-based MBKB Ltd achieved the grade one rating following a visit by inspectors in July, having first begun offering apprenticeships in January 2016, and now hopes to quickly double its learner numbers.
The firm had 555 apprentices at the time of the inspection, 200 of whom were studying a level 3 in payroll administration.
Other programmes included internal audit practitioner, operations and departmental management, early years education, business administration and human resources consultant.
In its report, the education watchdog praised MBKB for the “structured flexibility” of its curriculum, which it said “is directly responsive to the needs of employers in the workplace”.
Inspectors reported that open review meetings with staff helped develop and improve the apprenticeships, while tutors used their expertise to “share new content with apprentices, using real-life examples which support apprentices to secure new learning into their long-term memory quickly”.
Elsewhere, apprentices were guided to take “additional specialist units from other standards to support their progression and career pathways at a later point,” which meant they gained additional skills to support other potential avenues of work in future.
Inspectors said that on and off-the-job training were often linked to help apprentices apply their skills in the workplace quickly, and noted that apprentices were enthusiastic and “have a considerable impact on their workplace”.
Mark Bremner, chief executive of MBKB, said: “The result is a testament to the incredible team we have got and the support of all the employers and apprentices we take on.”
Bremner said the organisation has plans to expand while maintaining the quality of teaching for the standards it offers.
“We have proven we are very successful, particularly in payroll administration and leadership, and now we want to expand that more geographically in new areas,” he said.
“The target is to hit 1,000 apprentices in the next six months – it’s growth but built on quality.”