8 Benefits of Upskilling With Data Apprenticeships For Organisations

Data apprenticeships have demonstrated transformative benefits for organisations, enhancing productivity, improving product or service quality, and introducing new ideas into the workplace. 

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And a staggering 83% of employers have recommended the value of apprentices to other businesses, a powerful tool for sparking organisational growth.

And thanks to the UK Apprenticeship Levy, apprenticeships can be cost free for your organisation, which we’ll discuss in a moment.

So what are the benefits of upskilling with apprenticeships? 

Let’s take a look.

1. No cost to your organisation

The UK Apprenticeship Levy allows organisations who pay into the Levy pot to upskill their workforce at no added cost. This funding route helps organisations continuously evolve and adapt their skills base to meet changing industry demands without worrying about how to fund upskilling their employees. 

And what if your organisation doesn’t pay into the Apprenticeship Levy? You’re covered too by what’s called “co-investment”, allowing your organisation to pay just 5% of the cost of an apprenticeship with government funding covering the remaining 95%.

You can find out more about the UK Apprenticeship Levy and how it works by clicking the link below. 

RECOMMENDED READING: The Apprenticeship Levy: helping companies fill the digital skills gap


2. Future-proofing your workforce

Investing in apprenticeships across all fields is a strategic move toward future-proofing an organisation. Apprenticeships equip your workforce with diverse skills needed to navigate the future's technological and procedural shifts. As industries evolve, the knowledge gained through apprenticeships helps companies innovate and drive efficiencies.

This benefit is especially clear in the data industry. We’re witnessing an incredible rate of technological change. And the ability to understand, interpret, and leverage data becomes more important than ever for capturing and maintaining competitive advantage. 

Data apprenticeships can ensure that employees aren’t just familiar with current technologies but are also adaptable to future innovations and trends. By developing a data-savvy workforce, organisations safeguard their relevance and have the ability to position themselves as industry leaders.

With the way technology is advancing this means that some data positions within organisations are naturally evolving too. Edgar Tse saw his opportunity to future-proof his role at easyJet:

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"I saw my existing role of data analyst slowly transforming into a data science role. So in my mind, I thought, why don't I learn it now and future-proof myself?”


3. Employee empowerment

The benefits of data apprenticeships for employees go beyond just enhancing skills. Apprenticeships instil confidence, foster a sense of achievement, and illuminate new career paths for learners with the right training.

By offering on-the-job learning experiences, data apprenticeships allow employees to apply relevant and leading-edge skills to real-world challenges at work.

At Cambridge Spark we support our learners in crafting data projects that will benefit their organisations from the get go. 

Elle Neal“I had researched other providers of apprenticeships. But the thing that stood out for me with Cambridge Spark was the focus on business. You can apply data science in many different areas. But with Cambridge Spark, they will help you directly apply your learning to solve real problems in your business. And for me that was like... Wow!” Elle Neal, Data Scientist, BPA Quality

As employees acquire valuable data skills, their morale often rises with that empowerment. They feel an increased sense of purpose and alignment with their organisation’s goals, seeing firsthand how their contributions lead to tangible results from their projects. 

Employee empowerment also leads to a virtuous cycle of loyalty and productivity. Employees or apprentices who feel empowered are more likely to take initiative, propose innovative solutions, and commit to their organisation’s success.

In short, apprenticeships cultivate a dedicated and enthusiastic workforce.

RECOMMENDED READING: Administrator Presents Insights and Action Plan, Improves Employee Morale

Employee empowerment

4. Continuous learning for employee progression

According to Deloitte, organisations with a strong learning culture have 30%-50% higher engagement and retention rates. But employees who complete a data apprenticeship don’t just stay with their employer—they often thrive with them.

By introducing the concept of continuous learning into an organisation, data apprenticeships ensure that employees are always at the forefront of their industry. They’re continually exposed to the latest tools, techniques, and best practices in their fields. And the results are evident in their progression within their organisation.

Take for example, Martyna Jones, Data Analytics Manager at M&S. Martyna progressed from the Level 4 Data Analyst Apprenticeship to the Level 7 Data Science and AI Apprenticeship. As well as being promoted twice within 1 year, Martyna is a example of continuous learning and growth.

Continuous learning

5. Innovation opportunities

Upskilling employees in apprenticeships opens the door to innovative solutions for complex business problems.

When it comes to data apprenticeships, giving employees the knowledge to analyse and interpret data helps organisations businesses unlock insights that can lead to groundbreaking solutions for longstanding problems. 

A notable example is David Howell, Joint Director for Strategic Insight and Analytics at Surrey Heartlands Health and Care Partnership. David saw huge potential in applying more advanced analytics in healthcare.

Annually, the healthcare system in Surrey experiences approximately 10,000 emergency readmissions, with only 15% acknowledged as unavoidable cases.

In an effort to tackle the 85% of readmissions that can be prevented, David applied his knowledge from the Level 7 programme to develop a machine learning model capable of accurately identifying 70-80% of these cases. 

Now, the team is currently focused on refining this model and exploring alternative models to enhance its predictive precision.


6. Flexible learning pace

Apprenticeships offer the flexibility for employees to learn at their own pace, effectively balancing work and study. This approach ensures that learning is more personalised and adaptable to individual needs, leading to better outcomes and greater satisfaction among employees undertaking apprenticeship programmes.

This way of working creates an inclusive environment where every learner can thrive. 

And when learners thrive this means better results for your organisation.

Headshot image of Alwin Raju"One thing I really like is the fact that you can literally press 'submit' on an assignment and get tailored feedback on your code within seconds. That’s really useful because it allows you to do the work in your own time. It could be 2:00am, and you’re still getting productive feedback.” Alwin Raju, Senior Clinical Informatics Pharmacist, NHS.


7. Better staff retention

Apprenticeships showcase an organisation's dedication to fostering its employees' professional growth. Investing in these programmes helps demonstrate support for career advancement, enhancing job satisfaction and boosting staff retention rates.

This investment in employee development cultivates a motivated, loyal, and skilled team, reducing turnover and creating a positive workplace environment.

In fact, the National Apprenticeship Service found that  73% of employers reported an improvement in staff morale by having apprentices in their workforce.

Sammy Baylis, Human Resources Operations Manager from Teach First who completed her Level 4 Data Analyst Apprenticeship with us said: 

Sammy Baylis


“I'm really proud to say that I've finished this apprenticeship. I didn't even know how to open Python before, so for me to have come from that and wrote a script where I can reduce a day's work to under one second is a massive accomplishment to me and I'm happy!” 


Not only can apprenticeship programmes help organisations reach business goals but can support employees in reaching career growth goals too.

8. Robust talent pipeline

Data apprenticeships transform your workforce into a dynamic hub-and-spoke system, actively upskilling employees into data experts. 

This model cultivates an environment where these newly skilled workers proactively share their insights and knowledge with colleagues, enhancing the overall skill set of the whole organisation. 

In the field of data, this approach not only strengthens the company's data proficiency but also reinforces team collaboration, ensuring that knowledge flows seamlessly across the organisation. 

As employees evolve into adept data handlers, they become central figures in spreading expertise, effectively turning the workplace into a vibrant ecosystem of shared learning and professional growth.

Jonathan Wagstaff, Director of Technology at DCC Technology wanted to build a team within Exertis that brought data science into the organisation. After considering and using apprenticeships to upskill the team, the organisation now uses data apprenticeship training as a way to attract potential new hires too.

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Data apprenticeships offer a range of transformational benefits to organisations, from financial savings and future-proofing to fostering a culture of continuous learning and innovation. 

By embracing these programmes, companies empower their employees, improve retention, and build a robust talent pipeline ready to navigate the challenges of the modern economy. 

Investing in data apprenticeships is not just an investment in individual employees but in the future success and resilience of the organisation as a whole. 

To find out more about our data and AI apprenticeships visit our apprenticeship page or get in touch below.

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