ADS Forums

Approved development scheme forums

Tuesday 18 April – Manchester
Wednesday 26 April – London

Katie Holt, Development Manager 


Support for companies with Approved Development Schemes and those considering setting one up

IT is a few years since we have held an AD Scheme forum, so this year we will be running two – one in Sale (Manchester) on Tuesday 18 April and one in London on Wednesday 26 April. Representatives from companies with AD schemes or considering setting one up are welcome.

These are opportunities for representatives from the CICES-approved partner companies and other interested companies to meet each other and to compare experiences and share best practice. The forums will show examples of how companies manage AD schemes, keep track of trainees, mentoring and also give people the chance to pass on ideas or ask questions.

Also membership requirements will be covered, so people are clear on what is required re competencies, detailed CVs, experience reports, interview etc. Information will be presented around relevant apprenticeships, which are becoming increasingly popular with employers and young people. These are available at level 3 or 4 and also at level 6 (degree level) and can be cost-effective as government funding is available.

The number of development schemes approved by CICES is increasing, we now have 83 companies with schemes approved, both commercial management and geospatial engineering, with some companies including both disciplines.

In a nutshell, an Approved Development Scheme is a company’s commitment to the development of its staff. The scheme is structured around the CICES membership requirements.

The competencies are used as a framework for training and development, ensuring that trainees reach the desired level of competence through training, mentoring and experience.

Essentially the scheme supports trainees through the competencies and sets out the structure to supervise and mentor the trainees through the process, so allowing a more straightforward membership progression. Trainees will meet with their supervisor regularly to sign off competencies and mentors are also involved to help ease the progression.

AD schemes can cover any of the sets of competencies and can be for several different sets, so the trainees will each be allocated the particular set that is relevant to them. They can work towards technical member or member, or the scheme can cover both.

The specialisms

Geospatial engineering:

Commercial management:

Small companies and large can register a scheme with us, all we ask is that there should be five or more trainees on the scheme ideally and that all trainees join as one of the entry-level grades – student (if studying whilst working), affiliate, associate member (for those with a relevant apprenticeship) or graduate member (for those with a relevant degree level qualification). If you would like any more information on AD schemes and how to set one up, or more details about the forums please contact Katie Holt.


Katie Holt, Development Manager