end assessment service banner

End-point assessment service

City & Guilds delivers end-point assessment (EPA) across a broad range of apprenticeship standards and we add more all the time. EPA is the assessment process for the new apprenticeship standards in England, SASE frameworks continue as before.

Employers get to choose which apprenticeship assessment organisation to use for EPA. They might decide based on the company’s reputation or their trust in the organisation helping their apprentice to learn and demonstrate the right knowledge, skills and behaviours.

As well as the apprenticeship standard, legislation and funding rules affects delivery.

Pricing, payments and funding

How much does EPA cost?

Our prices are on Walled Garden or ask your business manager if you’re already a City & Guilds customer. If you're not yet a customer and want to know about prices, email apprenticeships@cityandguilds.com.

Cost varies with each standard as some assessment methods are more expensive than others. We set our prices once the Institute for Apprenticeships approves and publishes the assessment plan.

When do I have to pay?

We make two charges normally:

  1. Registration fee – a fee upfront for each apprentice when you register them on Walled Garden

  2. Reservation fee – when you make a reservation request for EPA we charge the second and final fee.

Who pays for EPA?

Costs for EPA are paid by the training provider who contracts with the assessment organisation on the employer’s behalf. This will often be colleges or training providers, so they should factor in the costs of EPA when they negotiate their contract with employers. Levy funding will cover EPA costs, and may cover resits – subject to restrictions and their own negotiations. For non-levy paying employers, the funding source is different (10% from the employer, 90% from government funding) but the payment set up is the same – paid by the training provider who contracts with the assessment organisation on the employer’s behalf.

Do I have to pay for resits?

Usually, yes. Some standards specify that all components of the EPA have to be retaken if an apprentice fails a section. Some standards let an apprentice take only the components they’ve failed.

Prices for resits are on Walled Garden.

Remember: only 20% of the apprenticeship funding band can be used to pay for EPA and resits. Costs above that must be paid by employers out of the final cost of the apprenticeship agreed between provider and employer. Centres and employers should agree who will pick up the cost of resits and confirm this in a written agreement.

Can I get a discount?

There may be some discounts if you bring a high number of apprentices. You should talk to your business manager if you’re already a customer or email apprenticeships@cityandguilds.com to ask about this.


Can qualifications be paid for out of apprenticeship funding?

If the qualification is mandatory, then you can use funding for this. Optional qualifications aren’t covered by funding. Employers and providers will have to agree how they’re going to pay for any optional qualifications they use.

Process

What is the organisation ID number for City & Guilds?

On the register of apprenticeship awarding organisations, our ID number is EPA0008. You will need this when you register your apprentice on the ILR to start their apprenticeship.


How do I register for standards where you run only EPA and not on-programme?

To use our EPA-only service where there’s no qualification attached to the standard, you need to complete one of our short forms below. If the standard has a mandatory qualification, then use the relevant qualification approval on Walled Garden and we’ll add access to the EPA service (if you’re not already set up as a customer, you’ll need to apply for centre approval first – visit our help and support section for how to do this).

So if you want to buy EPA only and there is no mandatory qualification:
Use this form if you're an approved centre with City & Guilds
Use this form if you're not an approved centre with City & Guilds


How do I book the EPA for my apprentice?

You must be a City & Guilds customer to book an assessment.

Customers make a reservation request through Walled Garden, which is our secure admin system for customers. Someone from our EPA team will contact you to confirm your exact requirements and make a booking. We’ll also check your apprentices meet the gateway criteria – this is an essential stage in all standards. A guide to booking the EPA on Walled Garden is on the help page.

Depending on if you’re an existing customer or not, or if you’re working with us for on-programme and EPA or just EPA there will be slightly different information you give us when you first set up the EPA account.


When can I reserve EPA?

An apprentice assessment organisation must be approved by the ESFA to deliver end-point assessment before it can take bookings. Remember that standards specify the amount of learning for an apprentice – the shortest possible is 12 months – and the time between reservation and assessment can be a maximum of three months. So you’ll use different timeframes for reservations depending on the standard.


How quickly can I get an apprentice from reservation request to assessment?

Once you make a reservation request, our team will manage the scheduling with you. Timing will depend on your apprentice having completed sufficient on-programme training – and successfully getting to gateway.


How do I know if my apprentice is ready for the EPA?

Employers and providers must decide together if the apprentice is ready for assessment by judging their learning and behaviours at gateway. Our offer provides on-programme resources and sample tests or assessments in many of the standards to develop and track the apprentices’ skills, knowledge and behaviours which could help them succeed at assessment.

Remember that getting to gateway always means passing English and maths at a level set by the standard.


When do we get the apprenticeship certificate?

The ESFA issues apprenticeship certificates after we’ve sent them the EPA results and managed any queries they have. They send the certificate directly to the employer. We cannot guarantee the ESFA’s timelines though bear in mind they let organisations claim certificates only once a month.

We also issue our own City & Guilds-branded EPA statement of achievement and these are sent out within four weeks to the customer.


How is the EPA plan set?

The EPA plan is decided by employer groups, known as trailblazers, when the new standards are created. Each standard has its own assessment plan. Assessment methods include: skills observation, professional discussions, portfolios of work, projects and online multiple choice tests.

Planning

How do employers and training providers agree which EPA organisation to use?

Employers get to choose which apprentice assessment organisation to use for EPA. This might be based on reputation and good standing or their trust in the organisation helping their apprentice to learn and demonstrate the right knowledge, skills and behaviours.


How do employers and training providers manage the EPA process?

It’s really important that employers and providers understand each other clearly from the outset. Both sides must manage the contract negotiation and processes well so that it’s clear who pays what and when – and also what counts as success. If you need help planning for this, our recorded webinars could help. Or email apprenticeships@cityandguilds.com for individual support.

Maths and English

What evidence do I need to show my apprentice has met the maths and English level set by the standard?

After sitting the functional skills assessment, you should have the results online and you need to upload these to the EPA portal. If your apprentice had already achieved the level of English and/or maths set by the standard, you would submit these results in the same way. Acceptable evidence is full certificate or e-certificate, statement of results issued by an awarding organisation, screenshot of the awarding organisation’s system showing the qualification has been achieved/awarded or a copy of the personal learner record.


Can my apprentices sit their English and maths assessments with the rest of the EPA?

No. As reaching the set level of English and maths is a requirement of gateway, the apprentice must show this before we can confirm them on EPA. You’ll need to submit proof of achievement to us and, in some cases, sitting the next level of functional skills too.


What if my apprentice doesn’t reach the English or maths level between making a reservation request and getting to gateway?

Because of ESFA rules, we cannot put an apprentice through EPA unless they’ve reached gateway with the right level of English and maths, we would have to cancel the assessment slot for your apprentice. Depending on how close this was to the booked slot, this may mean a cancellation charge.


Can my apprentice get an exemptions from the functional skills requirement?

Yes, if they can show prior achievement at the right level. The ESFA sets the English and maths qualifications and grades apprentices need to be exempted from the English and maths requirements of the standard.

Venues and assessors

How do I know your assessors are high quality?

To add to our large network of independent assessors, we use strict recruitment criteria such as membership of professional bodies or years of industry experience. We run bespoke assessment training for all new assessors plus on-going help and support to keep them up-to-date with quality assurance and apprenticeship requirements.


How do we know if our venue is suitable for EPA?

Each assessment plan has criteria for the EPA venue, so you can confirm that your venue meets this specification. Our independent assessors will sign off the venue on the day however some more technical venues will require a visit ahead of time. Our own venues are checked and signed off by occupational experts.


How do I become a City & Guilds independent end assessor?

We’re always interested in hearing from talented and experienced people who can assess apprentices’ performance. Read our information on recruitment and the list of the standards where we’re looking for new assessors.

We were the first assessment organisation to deliver EPA. You can hear how we made it work with the senior team at HRMC in our short video.

Employers talk about City & Guilds apprenticeships We were the first assessment organisation to deliver end-point assessment for the new apprenticeship standards in England.

If you want to talk about EPA with us in more detail please contact us and we’ll do our best to help.