Investing in apprenticeships is key to building better businesses and leaders

This National Apprenticeship Week, the Chartered Management Institute (CMI) is celebrating the role of apprenticeships in improving business leadership. Chartered Management Degree Apprenticeships (CMDAs) are delivering more skilled, more diverse, more confident leaders able to tackle current and future challenges across a range of industries.

CMI knows that managers view apprenticeships favourably, and recognise that they provide a range of benefits to individuals and organisations. In our Manager’s Voice 2019 survey:

  • 91% of respondents agree that apprenticeships should be available for people of all ages
  • 86% agree that apprenticeships can help to build diverse workforces
  • 86% agree that apprenticeships are beneficial for providing employees with additional skills
  • 83% agree that apprenticeships are beneficial for building on employee’s existing skills

Steve Heappey, Director of Partner Engagement at CMI, said:

Management Degree apprenticeships, like the CMDA and the Senior Leader Master's Degree Apprenticeship (SLMDA) have opened the pathway to a management career to parts of society who are under represented in boardrooms and executive teams across the country today. More than two in five CMDA apprentices come from the most deprived areas of the UK.

What management degree apprenticeships are doing is setting a group of people - more representative of the face of modern Britain - on a trajectory towards top jobs. More than that, they’re being equipped with the skills, experience, and most importantly, confidence they need to excel in those jobs.

Various Chartered Management Degree Apprenticeship graduates spoke to CMI about how they experienced benefits ranging from confidence boosts to stronger backgrounds in management and leadership skills.

Case Studies

Christianah F. Awodiji, CMDA:

As a Chartered Manager, I have validity and legitimacy as a manager and leader in any setting. Being able to combine my skills and knowledge to underpin my practice is beneficial to organisational performance, success, and cost-effectiveness. On a personal level, it also gave me a sense of belonging which I had never thought possible, [and] a professional career linked to the world of academia.

Chris Hallett, CMDA:

Most of the other apprentices are younger than me, so I can benefit from passing on my experience, but also getting experience from them from an academic perspective - ultimately we're all keen to learn. [...] I'm already seeing how different lessons can be applied, and though I'm not in a leadership role yet, I'm already seeing how different team structures can fit into different work scenarios.

Rachel Kelly, CMDA:

I chose to pursue this qualification because I thought it was a good opportunity to build my management skills. I’ve been in management for quite a number of years but never had the degree qualification. [...] It’s really helped me self-reflect on my management style and develop my team.

We must continue working to upskill the nation. Recent figures show that the slowdown in Britain’s productivity growth over the last decade is the worst since the start of the Industrial Revolution 250 years ago. One key reason for this is a lack of leadership and management skills – particularly in SMEs. To support the government’s ‘leveling up’ agenda we need to invest in more and higher-quality leadership and management and training, and also for take-up of this training to increase.


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For Media Enquiries contact:

John Kaponi
Head of Media Relations, CMI

T: 020 7421 2743
M: 07535 088 177



Notes to Editors:

Chartered Management Institute

  • The Chartered Management Institute is the chartered professional body for management and leadership, counting more than 132,000 managers and leaders in its membership community
  • There are 7,697 Chartered Managers
  • Backed by a unique Royal Charter, CMI is the only organisation able to award Chartered Manager status - the ultimate management accolade, which is proven to boost individuals’ career prospects, management capability and impact in the workplace.

The CMI Manager’s Voice Survey:

The spring edition of the survey, which is the second edition, was undertaken between 25th April and 3rd June 2019. 1,092 UK-based members responded.