Brathay Apprentice Challenge 2014 Q&A Sheet
What is the Brathay Apprentice Challenge?
The Brathay Apprentice Challenge 2014 (#BAC14) is the search for the apprentice team of
the year – it is being organised by the Brathay Trust and supported by the National
How do teams enter?
Now in its third year, the Brathay Apprentice Challenge opens for formal nominations at the
Skills Show in November 2013. The closing date for nominations is Friday 13th December
To see what it took Innovia Films to be crowned 2013 apprentice team of the year watch
How many people are needed for a team?
To win the Brathay Apprentice Challenge, teams of nine apprentices have to prove their team
building, leadership, logistical and communications abilities.
Teams can be made up of apprentices from a single employer, a group of small businesses,
an industry, supply chain or training provider.
Do all the team members need to be apprentices?
Yes, all team members need to be apprentices.
What do teams have to do?
Initially, all teams have to nominate themselves by providing some basic information at
firstname.lastname@example.org. More information will then be provided about
Challenge, including toolkits to help teams succeed.
The regional heats start in January 2014 and consist of two elements:
1) Awareness raising activity
Conduct extensive awareness raising of their entry into the Challenge and
Apprenticeships in local schools as well as across their industry and region
2) Community project
A community project where the teams use their skills to help their local area
All teams are expected to conduct activity during National Apprenticeship Week 2014 (3 rd -7th
The teams’ regional activity will be assessed according to clearly set out judging criteria.
Eight finalist teams will be announced in April and will battle it out to be crowned ‘apprentice
team of the year’.
The eight teams need to conduct:
Further awareness raising activity
Further increase awareness of Apprenticeships among schools, community groups
Fundraise for a local or national charity
Logistical and team building adventure finale
Participate in the physical, mental and team building adventure finale taking place at
the Brathay Trust’s Windermere headquarters from 9th - 11th June 2014
The winning team will be announced in Windermere on the 11th June 2014 and will be judged
based on clearly defined criteria taking into account all three aspects of the finals.
Do teams have to pay to enter?
It is free to enter the Brathay Apprentice Challenge. If teams make the finals they are asked
to raise £500 for the Brathay Trust charitable fund as part of the fundraising activity.
How many teams will go through to the finals?
Eight teams will go through to the finals, which will be announced in April 2014. The top team
from each of the four National Apprenticeship Service regional divisions (Central, Northern,
Southern and London and the South East) will go through to the final along with the next top
four scoring teams from across the country.
Why should employers enter a team of apprentices?
Teams taking part in the Brathay Apprentice Challenge in 2012 and 2013 reported that:
Apprentices gained team building, leadership, logistical and communications skills.
Employers saw improved skills among the competing apprentices and increased local
profile of their organisations through positive PR and CSR opportunities
Important information about the benefits of Apprenticeships was delivered direct by
apprentices to schools and local communities
What learning do the teams get out of competing?
Throughout the Brathay Apprentice Challenge the individual members of each team will need
to demonstrate the same work skills that will be required to be successful at their
organisations and progress their careers. These are the same skills that are valued by
employers regardless of industry or size as the key to their success.
We will provide toolkits and guidance to the competitors to fulfil the Challenge with the aim
that the skills apprentices have learnt in these elements will stay with them throughout their
The logistical and team building adventure finale will require a careful planning approach, the
definition of clear goals for the team as well as management of resources ensuring that they
have all the equipment and people in the right place at the right time.
Clear communication will be needed to ensure that all team members are aware of this and
that they have ownership and responsibility for specific areas of the Challenge. Like the
workplace it is likely that events may require the plan to slip, adapt or even be completely
rethought, how the teams deal with impact upon their success. Through self-reflection the
team members will assess their own performance and how they get their needs met and
Further detail on the Logistical and team building adventure finale
In addition to presenting the results of previous elements of the finals and taking part in
media opportunities and discussion around Apprenticeships, the teams will undertake four
stages at the finale:
The foot and paddle stages will have a mixture of orienteering point and mental and problem
solving tasks. The teams will need to define a careful strategy regarding how the will
maximise their earnings before setting out, decisions will need to be taken “on the hoof”
regarding how long they spend on challenges as well as working towards specific deadlines.
As in the world of work there will be consequences if deadlines are missed.
During the technical stage the teams will take on three specific challenges all with specific
rules to follow and a time to be completed in. These tasks will challenge the teams trust in
each other and reveal how they perform under pressure and how prepared they are to
challenge themselves and others to take risks to enable the team to exceed expectations.
The last, Whaler stage of the finale, requires the teams to focus on a specific repetitive task.
Following the previous days of activity, the teams will need to maintain determination, focus
Can teams that have entered the Brathay Apprentice Challenge previously re-enter?
Yes, organisations that have previously entered the Brathay Apprentice Challenge are
welcome to enter again this year. Individual apprentices that have previously competed in
the finals section of the Brathay Apprentice Challenge are unable to compete again. Team
members who competed in the regional heats in 2013 are able to be part of an organisation’s
team in 2014.
Is it an appropriate use of government funds to stage this Challenge?
The National Apprenticeship Service uses the Challenge to deliver three distinct benefits:
Providing employers a simple way to offer an ‘enhanced Apprenticeship’ experience
that benefits employers and apprentices. Enhanced Apprenticeships benefit
employers by providing apprentices with even more skills by taking part in team
building, leadership, logistical and communications activity.
Driving improved levels of skills among the competing apprentices, which helps boost
economic growth and international competitiveness
Delivering important information about the benefits of Apprenticeships by apprentices
to schools and local communities
How do you guarantee that the competition is assessed fairly?
All teams have been working to identical briefs and given identical guidelines from the
organisers. The Challenge is assessed by independent experts using clearly set out scoring