First Level 4 Software Developer to pass through EPA earns Distinction

Ryan Whitfield, a Software Developer Apprentice at Exbos Limited, has now been promoted to a permanent Software Developer after achieving a Distinction in his End Point Assessment (EPA) last month.

The brand new Level 4 Software Developer standard went live in May 2017, and we immediately implemented the course into our curriculum, recognising the value this apprenticeship could bring to businesses across the nation. We’re proud to announce that our first learner to pass through EPA has achieved a Distinction.

Ryan Whitfield in the Exbos offices
Ryan Whitfield at the Exbos Limited offices in Bradford

Exbos Limited are an ISO27001 accredited Software Development company that help clients outsource key programmes of their work to their highly skilled Project Delivery team. Formed in 2007, and based in Bradford, they specialise in building robust, secure and competitively priced web based systems.

We contacted Angela Donnelly, Director of Sales, for comment on Ryan’s achievement:

“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.”

Having completed the apprenticeship, Ryan has been promoted to a permanent position within Exbos, and told us, “Exbos have been incredibly helpful over the last 3 years and I’m really grateful to them; they’ve accommodated all my needs. I look forward to continuing working here.

“I always saw Software as a stable career path: it’s used in everyday life all of the time now. Every time I looked there seemed to be more and more jobs available in that sector. I’d always had an interest in IT and computers, but I hadn’t ever previously developed anything when I started my apprenticeship.

“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 really appreciated visiting the training centre because communicating with the other learners that are working within the industry or in other businesses but doing similar roles was hugely helpful. For example, one learner showed me a website that helps to test colours to make sure the web page is accessible for colour blindness. Little things like this added even more value to attending training.

“The trainers have always been really helpful when I’ve been in the training centre. They are very hands-on with their approach, and always take the extra time to ensure that I was understanding the training. I knew if I ever had any issues that I could turn to my trainers and they would help me tackle them.

“I found some of the modules more challenging than others, the Project Management module opened my eyes to this part of the SDLC as this isn’t something I have experience with in my immediate role, but found really useful to learn about.

“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.”

We’d like to congratulate Ryan for his fantastic achievement, and wish him all the best in his career – may it be a long and happy one!

If you’re interested in taking on an apprentice with Estio then please contact our Client Engagement Team on 01133 500 333 for more information.