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Operations Management — Higher Apprenticeship (Level 5)

Apprenticeship outline

An operations/departmental manager is someone who manages teams and/ or projects, and achieving operational or departmental goals and objectives, as part of the delivery of the organisations strategy.

They are accountable to a more senior manager or business owner. Working in the private, public or third sector and in all sizes of organisation, specific responsibilities and job titles will vary, but the knowledge, skills and behaviours needed will be the same.

Key responsibilities may include creating and delivering operational plans, managing projects, leading and managing teams, managing change, financial and resource management, talent management, coaching and mentoring.

Roles may include:

  • Operations manager
  • Regional manager
  • Divisional manager
  • Department manager
  • Specialist managers

The apprenticeship covers:

Skills and Knowledge

  • Organisational Performance – delivering results
    • Operational Management
    • Understand operational management approaches and models, including creating plans to deliver objectives and setting KPIs. Be able to input into strategic planning and create plans in line with organisational objectives.
  • Project Management
    • Know how to set up and manage a project using relevant tools and techniques, and understand process management. Understand approaches to risk management. Plan, organise and manage resources to deliver required outcomes. Monitor progress, and identify risk and their mitigation. Able to use relevant project management tools.
  • Finance
    • Understand business finance: how to manage budgets, and financial forecasting. Be able to monitor budgets and provide reports, and consider financial implications of decisions and adjust approach/recommendations accordingly.
  • Interpersonal Excellence
    • Managing people and developing relationships
  • Leading People
    • Understand different leadership styles, how to lead multiple and remote teams and manage team leaders. Be able to communicate organisational vision and goals and how these to apply to teams. Support development through coaching and mentoring, and enable and support high performance working. Able to support the management of change within the organisation.
  • Managing People
    • Know how to manage multiple teams, and develop high performing teams.
    • Understand performance management techniques, talent management models and how to recruit and develop people.
    • Be able to develop, build and motivate teams by identifying their strengths and enabling development within the workplace.
    • Be able to delegate and enable delivery though others.
  • Building Relationships
    • Understand approaches to partner, stakeholder and supplier relationship management including negotiation, influencing, and effective networking.
    • Be able to build trust, and use effective negotiation and influencing skills and manage conflict.
    • Identify and share good practice, and work collaboratively with others both inside and outside of the organisation.
    • Use of specialist advice and support to deliver against plans.
  • Communication
    • Understand interpersonal skills and different forms of communication and techniques (verbal, written, non-verbal, digital) and how to apply them appropriately.
    • Be flexible in communication style.
    • Be able to chair meetings and present using a range of media.
    • Use of active listening, and able to challenge and give constructive feedback.

Personal Effectiveness – Managing Self

  • Self -Awareness
    • Understand own impact and emotional intelligence.
    • Understand different and learning and behaviour styles.
    • Be able to reflect on own performance, working style and its impact on others.
  • Management of Self
    • Understand time management techniques and tools, and how to prioritise activities and the use of different approaches to planning, including managing multiple tasks.
    • Be able to create a personal development plan.
    • Use of time management and prioritisation techniques.
  • Decision Making
    • Understand problem solving and decision making techniques, including data analysis.
    • Be able to undertake critical analysis and evaluation to support decision making Use of effective problem solving techniques.
    • Understand organisational values and ethics and their impact on decision making.


  • Takes responsibility
  • Inclusive
  • Professionalism

How to apply for this apprenticeship

You can register your interest in an Apprenticeship by emailing your CV to

Want to find out more first?

Call the Business Engagement Team on 0115 945 7260

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Study location Workplace

1 tutorial per month (online) plus independent facilitated learning amounting to approximately 7 hours per week.

Start date

You can start this Apprenticeship at any time of the year.


Operations Management - Level 5 Standard


Typically around 30 months

Level Level 5
Entry requirements

You must have a Level 2 qualification in both English and Maths.

You must also be employed as an Operations Manager (or equivalent role) with direct reports, some finance responsibility, some input into the business strategy and have the opportunity to make a business case for and to run a work based project using waterfall or agile methodology.

Teaching & assessment
  • Assessment of knowledge through a test using scenarios, questions and responses
  • Assessment of competency through a structured competency based interview
  • Assessment of portfolio of evidence
  • Presentation on work based project with Question and Answer session
  • Continuing Professional Development Log reviewed and professional discussion
Additional information

On completion, apprentices can register as full members with the Chartered Management Institute and/or the Institute of Leadership and Management, and those with 3 years’ of management experience can apply for Chartered Manager status through the CMI.