Author Archives: Danielle Jamieson

End Point Assessment: Whose Problem is it anyway?

Consultation event for EPAOs – London 5th July – Cumberland Hotel, London 11am – 3pm


We would like to invite you to a half day event in London to hear from you about progress and implementation of the new Apprenticeship Standards.

The reformed Apprenticeship Standards system is still bedding itself in.

A key part of its infrastructure are the new EPAOs and the new approach to External Quality Assurance. As such we are all operating in a new environment.One in which we can learn and share experiences to develop the best way forward to ensure successful delivery of the new Apprenticeship Standards and their assessments.


We believe that there is a need for a shared narrative and that this is the time for collaborative discussions with the DfE, the IfA and ESFA on a wide range of subjects including but not limited to:

·       Data sharing;

·       Data systems;

·       Pricing of EPAO services

·       Deliverability of assessment plans;

·       Staffing and capacity; 

We are an impartial broker for the EPAOs, and would love to hear your views, concerns and how best we can create a unified voice for the End Point Assessment Organisations.

DAY Agenda:
Welcome & Registration –  Tea and Coffee – 10:30 – 11:00


Welcome and Introduction to the day: 11:00


First session: 11:10 – Funding and Costing of Assessment,


Second Session: 11:50  Managing the Quality of Assessment


Lunch: 12:30 – 13:10


Third Session: 13:10 – Systems and Processes,


Fourth Session: 13:50 – 14:20 : ACE 360


Fifth Session: 14:20 – 14:50: The Assessors Guild

Close Session: 14:50 – 15:00



Customer Satisfaction Survey 2018

As we begin a new year we would like to take some time to reflect on 2017. Each year the Federation carries out an annual, online survey of its key customers, to collect their views on a number of issues. Such as the operational performance of ACE itself and specifically on their experiences of the support and guidance that you get from both the Federation and individual Certification Bodies.

This year’s survey is now available for you to give us your feedback and will remain open until 5pm on Friday 16th March. Previous year’s surveys have had a tremendous response rate and we really appreciate and value all of your feedback. Please do take the time to tell us what you think.

By completing the survey in full, you will be entered into our prize draw to win one of three prizes of either £100, £50 or £25 in high street vouchers. Winners will be randomly selected once the survey has closed and winners will be individually contacted. A list of winners will be published, on our ACE website, in due course.

ACE Customer Satisfaction Survey 2015

It’s that time of year again!


We would very much appreciate if you could take the time to complete our online survey and give us your feedback on your experiences over the last year of the customer service and support that you have had from the Federation, Certification Bodies and the ACE certification process as a whole.


Over the past year there have been significant changes made to both ACE itself, with the launch of ACE 2 in April, and associated certification processes. This has included an extensive review of the guidance materials available, development of the online ACE-IT training tool and the launch of the online Helpdesk in November. The majority of the work that has been carried out, over the past 12 months, has been driven by your feedback given to us in previous surveys and through our provider events.


We are continually working to improve our systems, processes and enhance our levels of customer service and we need your help to achieve this.


Last year we saw an unprecedented level of responses to our survey and, as a regular user of ACE, we would again like to ask for your feedback which is invaluable to us.


We would be very grateful if you could take the time to complete this year’s survey, which should take not more than 15 minutes.


Survey link:


The survey will close at 5pm on Friday 20th March 2015. If you have any questions in the meantime please do not hesitate to contact the ACE support team using the online ACE Helpdesk.


In due course we will share the findings from the survey.


Many thanks and kind regards,


Federation team


Removal of the ACE Declaration Form



The Apprentice Declaration & Authorisation Form for ACE is to be phased out!


Over the last few months, we have been looking at options for removing the need for the ACE Declaration Form to be completed and uploaded to ACE as part of every Apprenticeship Certification claim. We have been in discussions with colleagues in government to ensure that whatever solution is implemented complies with all the necessary legislative requirements.


We have now agreed a new process and this is currently being developed within ACE, ready for a launch in early April (actual date TBC).


In summary the new process will be as follows:


  • The current ACE Declaration Form will be replaced by a simplified Apprentice Consent Form which all Apprentices will be required to sign at the END of their Apprenticeship.
  • The signed Apprentice Consent Form will have to be retained by the ACE claimant (training provider), for audit purposes.
  • A copy of the signed Apprentice Consent Form will NOT be required to be uploaded to ACE for every Apprentice. However, ACE will be programmed to randomly ask for a copy of a signed Consent Form to be uploaded for an Apprentice and, if requested, an ACE claim cannot be completed without the requested Consent Form being uploaded for that specific Apprentice.
  • The individual making the Apprenticeship certification claim on ACE will be required to tick an online declaration that they confirm that the Apprentice has signed a Consent Form, which has been retained on file, and that they have the Apprentice’s authorisation to claim their Apprenticeship Completion Certificate on their behalf. Clicking this online declaration statement will automatically record the ACE username of the claimant and also date and time stamp the declaration being made.
  • This information will be permanently stored as part of the Apprentice’s ACE record and will be used for future audit/verification purposes.
  • Once the online declaration has been agreed and the tick box completed to record the claimant’s confirmation, the ACE claim will either be allowed to proceed in the usual manner or a signed consent form may be requested for upload to ACE before the claim can be submitted for review by the relevant Certification Body.




Our key driver for this change is to simplify the process for both ACE claimants and Certification Bodies and in turn reduce the level of current rejections that arise as a result of queries/problems with submitted V3 Apprentice Declaration & Authorisation Forms. We know from our consultation with, and feedback from, all ACE users that this is an issue which is particularly problematic for all concerned and has, on occasions, led to delays in the timely issue of Apprenticeship Completion certificates. This is not a situation that we can allow to continue and we are confident that the new process we are developing will bring benefits for everyone, not least your successful Apprentices.


Over the next few weeks we will be developing the process within ACE and working with a number of you to test its operation, ease of use and gathering general feedback on the new functionality.


We look forward to its implementation in early April and, as always, will welcome your feedback.



Continued downtime for 07/01/2015

Good Morning,

First of all let me apologise for the continued downtime of the ACE system ( Our new hosting provider had assured us that the site would be back up and running by 10 a.m. this morning (7th January) however they have hit further delays. It is unclear at this moment in time when the system will be back online but we are doing everything in our power to make this happen as soon as possible.

We also apologise if this is the first communication you have recieved from us as the email facility we use for our notifcations had also been affected by the unexpected downtime. We will email you with updates as and when we have them and we will update the Federation Website Newsfeed for those users who do not have access to their emails (

We thank you again for your patience whilst we resolve this issue. You can still contact the System Support Team via 0300 303 4444 and for any futher queries.



Jamie Smith

UK Systems Operation Manager

Federation for Industry Sector Skills & Standards