The Level 5 Operations or Departmental Manager Apprenticeship is aimed at participants who are keen to progress into management of teams and/ or projects, with accountability for planning, delivering, and achieving departmental goals and objectives.

Requirements for study:

  • A minimum of 6 hours per week spent in off-the-job training
  • Maths and English Functional Skills Level 2 (or equivalent) by completion of apprenticeship
  • 27-month programme, plus 6 months for Gateway and End Point Assessment

L5 Operations or Departmental Manager

How the apprenticeship works:

  • The programme is over 27 months, plus 6 months for Gateway and End Point Assessment (EPA)
  • Attendance at 11 face-to-face teaching days or online sessions for apprenticeship Standard content (approximately every 9 weeks), plus online mid-module workshop sessions
  • Regular 6-week reviews with CIRO coach and every 12 weeks with line manager to guide development opportunities
  • Access to online learning resources
  • Access to webinars for further learning and behavioural development
  • OneFile portfolio development
  • Preparation for EPA with an independent assessment where you will demonstrate your new knowledge, skills and behaviours by delivering a work-based project and have a professional review of your learning
  • Access to CIRO POD
  • Online access to the Operators’ Handbook

Course content includes:

  • Operational Management
  • Project Management
  • Finance
  • Leading People
  • Managing People
  • Building Relationships
  • Communication
  • Self- Awareness
  • Management of Self
  • Decision Making
  • Operators’ Handbook – Online Certificate Course
  • Level 5 Award in Management & Leadership


1. Level 5 Operations or Departmental Manager Apprenticeship

Certificate from Institution for Apprentices and Technical Education (IfATE)

2. The 12 System elements of Rail online course plus live webinar series leading to an CIRO Operations Practitioner Diploma

from Rail Academy

3. Level 5 Award in Management and Leadership

from Chartered Management Institution (CMI)