Learning@Cisco drives the talent development needed to evolve the workforce of today to meet the demands of tomorrow, and to close the global networking skills talent gap. It has doubled networking talent certified in Cisco from one to two million people in the last five years. It provides the educational training, certifications, social communities, and knowledge services necessary to recruit, train and evolve talent.

Apprenticeship programmes are a natural extension of this mission, as they can be an effective way to employ new IT talent as well as train and develop current IT staff with relevant skills for business success. For most companies, improving business processes at all levels, from manufacturing to sales, is contingent on efficient implementation of technology. Possessing an innovative, well-trained IT staff can become a source of competitive advantage.

The National Apprenticeship Service (NAS) in the UK is responsible for delivering the high ambitions the Government has set for Apprenticeships. They collaborate with public bodies, companies and learning institutions to bridge the gap between employer needs and the young people looking for a first job.
In response to employers’ demands, Learning@Cisco, a NAS Partner, has launched a new advanced and Higher Apprenticeship programme, which strives to develop a qualified and motivated workforce, utilising Cisco’s industry leading certification programme.

Cisco and testing partner, Pearson will raise awareness of the system implemented in the UK among other EU member states and Cisco partners, in order to replicate this successful example of collaboration between public and private sector. This message will be complemented with the promotion of the supporting activities offered by Erasmus and the European Social fund.

  • What does the Apprenticeship entail and what kind of things do the Cisco IT apprentices learn on the course?

The Cisco Validated BTEC Apprenticeship scheme is a 12-month Level 3 advanced programme or a 24 month Level 4 Higher programme designed to develop well-trained employees to employers in need of networking and IT talent. The fundamental aim of the Apprenticeship programme is to ensure the networking and IT workforce of the future is adequately trained and equipped to support organisations across sectors. As the Internet of Everything accelerates, there is a growing need for qualified, specialised technical talent that can implement next generation networking technologies across industries such as manufacturing and energy.
Importantly, learners will gain both an internationally work-based BTEC qualification and the globally industry recognised Cisco CCNA or CCNP certification; a combination that is truly valuable to the learner to enhance their career progression, and also their employer who gains assurance of their IT skills and competencies.

  • What happens to the apprentices after they have finished the course?

This program provides an effective path to many entry-level IT network positions including Network
Engineer, System Administrator, and Cloud Data Centre Technician.

The specific role of each apprentice will vary based on a number of factors. However, with a solid background in networking and an industry-leading CCNA or CCNP certification, the apprentice will be well-prepared to proceed with a successful career in technology, with the company they apprentice with, or with another organisation. Today, there are more than 2 million Cisco certified individuals around the world, working in
companies ranging from small start-ups to multinational corporations, in a wide variety of roles.

  • Why are these Apprenticeships beneficial to the employee as well as for Cisco?

IT networking is projected to be one of the fastest growing careers in the United Kingdom, with more than 500,000 new entrants expected over the next five years and more than 1 million globally in the same time frame. The Cisco Validated BTEC Apprenticeship for IT, Software Web & Telecoms Professionals, launched as a pilot in the UK, facilitates the inherent need for highly qualified, job-ready IT talent by adhering closely to the specific tasks expected of these in-demand future professionals.
This commitment with the European Alliance for Apprenticeship is the logical follow-up of the initiatives that Cisco is already developing in the framework of the Grand Coalition for Digital Jobs. In 2012 alone, Cisco trained almost 300,000 students across all of Europe, who are ideal candidates for the programme and ready to provide the IT, business, and customer skills that any organisation requires.
For more information or to register for this program visit :