A BRADFORD apprentice has been promoted into a full-time post after being the first person to pass the new training standards with his apprenticeship provider.

Ryan Whitfield has been promoted to the full-time role as a Software Developer at Exbos, based in Trevor Froster Way, West Bowling, following his training success.

Working with national training provider Estio Training, he achieved the highest possible grade of a Distinction after passing his End Point Assessment for his Level 4 Software Development Technician apprenticeship.

He is the first person in his cohort to pass the Level 4 tests since the new learning standard went live in May 2017.

Mr Whitfield, 20, has been working at Exbos for more than two years as an apprentice while studying.

He had always been interested in computing, but initially had no experience in software development, and chose an apprenticeship rather than going to university.

He said: “I decided that I wanted to go down the development route because it’s more hands on.

“At Exbos we create bespoke web-based software, so on a day-to-day basis I’m now writing Javascript, C#, HTML (with CSS) and SQL to work with databases.

“As well as this, I’m communicating with our clients to fulfil their needs.

“I wanted to do the apprenticeship to get some formal qualifications. Having not done Software Development before this was important to me, but I also wanted to be in the workplace to gain work experience such as knowledge of processes and client interaction, these are things that a university course couldn’t give me.

“I would definitely recommend an apprenticeship. There is a step up from being in school to joining a working environment, but the progression that you get from being in both the learning and working environment is hugely beneficial.”

He studied with Estio Training, which is a digital and IT apprenticeship provider with training centres across the country, aiming to boost the digital sector to address a digital skills gap with new workers.

Lee Meadows, commercial director at Estio Training, said: “It is no secret that there is a digital skills gap across the UK, and we provide businesses with a clear strategy to help tackle this issue.

“Our apprenticeship programmes are designed around the employer’s needs; our flexible training programs offer businesses real solutions to sourcing the skillsets relevant for their infrastructure.

“We recognise the importance of bringing skills into our economy from the bottom up; that’s why Ryan’s achievement is a milestone for us as a business, but also for the UK.”

Despite only being at the company for less than three years, and starting with relatively limited experience in the industry, the impact Mr Whitfield has made on the company has not gone unnoticed.

Angela Donnelly, director of sales at Exbos, said: “Ryan chose an alternative path to university and he’s not only excelled at Level 3 and 4 of the programme but he’s gained three invaluable years of work experience, on real life projects, at the same time.

“Exbos provided a rich work-based learning environment to fully complement the training and coaching team at Estio.

“As Ryan’s skills grew, his contribution correspondingly increased. He can now look back and see the huge progression he’s made from beginner to skilled developer and feel incredibly proud.

“In return, Exbos have gained a strong capable team member who knows and understands our exacting standards, particularly in relation to security. We couldn’t be more delighted.”

For more information about the apprenticeships that Estio Training provide please visit www.estio.co.uk