Introducing End-Point Assessments at FuturU

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Helen Soan, Head of EPA, FuturU

Helen Soan is Head of EPA at FuturU and manages a team who assess four different health and social care apprenticeship standards. In this blog, she talks about FuturU’s journey towards becoming an EPA organisation, the team’s impact to-date and their plans to innovate in this space.

How did FuturU become an end-point assessment organisation?

In September 2023, we officially took over EPA delivery from Newcross Healthcare, who have been an end-point assessor since 2019. What’s great is that we’ve retained the same expert team and clients, but under the FuturU brand. We’ve been approved by the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) to deliver EPAs to apprentices for a growing number of apprenticeship standards in England, predominantly in health and social care. 

What’s special about the way FuturU delivers end-point assessments? 

We’re specialists in what we do as a lot of us have backgrounds in care. We assess learners in levels 2 through 5 in health and social care, and have an expert team of assessors with deep sector knowledge. 

We’re also a technology-led business, which means we’re always looking for new ways to improve and automate things. For example, we’ve recently built a new scheduling system, which gives training providers real-time updates on when their learners get booked in for their assessments. It may sound simple, but the feedback so far has been really positive!

But while technology is important, we’re also really committed to building strong relationships with our training partners, who we talk to daily. We’re always seeking feedback and sending out regular surveys to both our clients and learners to see where we can be improving. 

How big is your team and what experience do they have?

We’re a team of around 25 people, many of whom transitioned over from Newcross Healthcare (including me!), so we’re already very established. We have 16 specialist assessors, all who come from a care background and have real expertise in the sector, and two coordinators who manage all our scheduling. 

We recently appointed a Head of Quality and Compliance who joins us next year and who will be working with our Quality Manager to ensure that we continue to deliver robust assessments and successfully grow the EPA delivery. We’ve also got an experienced team of Lead IQAs and IQAs, who are responsible for delivering internal quality assurance within the EPA team. 

We have an amazing team who are constantly getting involved with projects across the business and working collaboratively with other departments in FuturU. It’s great to see them really living our value of “In It Together”.

What impact have you delivered to-date?

Since 2019, we’ve supported around 5,000 apprentices to complete their end-point assessments in health and social care, a number which is only growing. We have a pass rate of over 90% and we’re proud to have achieved a 4.6/5 satisfaction score from learners. We’re currently working with around 20 training providers of all shapes and sizes, and hope to work with many more over the coming months.  

Outside of our EPA business, we’re also proud to offer free healthcare training and education to carers and nurses across the UK. As well as completing their EPA with us, it’s great to see many of the apprentices benefitting from ongoing professional development through our platform. 

How do you plan to grow FuturU’s EPA business?

In addition to offering levels 2 through 5 in health and social care, we’ve just put in an application for two further apprenticeship standards: Business Administrator and Team Leader Supervisor. We’re in the process of designing and building those assessments while we await approval from OFQUAL and hope to offer these to new and existing clients very soon. 

Why is this cause so important to you personally?

While I haven’t come from a care background, I’ve lost family members and seen first-hand what exceptional care is and how people do it for very little. If there’s an opportunity to give something back, help people feel recognised and rewarded within the sector, it’s got to be done. I love that FuturU is so passionate about developing people within care and giving them the opportunity to upskill and take on apprenticeships. 

To use FuturU for your end-point assessments, contact us here.

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