A new way to construct your career. Recruitment for September 2019 opens soon. A new way to construct your career. Recruitment for September 2019 opens soon.


This higher level ‘apprenticeship’ Programme is sponsored by PlanBEE, a consortium of employers working in the Built Environment industry.

Established by Ryder Architecture, PlanBEE is an industry wide partnership of companies who want people with a new and broader set of skills in their businesses. Comprising some of the most recognised brands in the industry and niche SMEs, they have committed to work together to shape the talent of the future and inspire people to consider a rewarding career in a broad range of technical and professional roles in Architecture, Engineering, Building Services and Construction/Site Management.

The partners have a long track record of recruiting and training apprentices and graduates and have worked with Gateshead College to develop a bespoke programme of on and off the job training which provides a salary and a fast track to graduation and professional accreditation and offers a guaranteed job to those who successfully complete.


From the moment you join PlanBEE, you'll be a valuable member of the team and we'll make sure your work is well rewarded. So we won’t just train you for a well paid career; we’ll pay you a salary from day one.

How much you earn depends on your age, role and location, but you'll start on (from) £12,400* a year. You’ll also benefit from a pension plan and a generous holiday entitlement, every year.

You will gain qualifications at Level 4 and 5 (HNC/D) – with no tuition fees to pay!

As part of your programme you will be placed with a range of employers who have excellent reputations in the sector and whose projects and commissions take them across the UK and the world giving you experience of different disciplines of architecture, building engineering (structural and M&E) and construction/site management.

What will I study?

Focused on the technical and managerial aspects of design and construction, the programme is supported by the Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB), the Institute of Civil Engineers (ICE), the Chartered Institute of Architectural Technologists (CIAT) and the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS).

Study will comprise of a Level 4 & 5 Qualification (BTEC Higher National Certificate / Diploma) which is approved by the industry's recognised professional bodies in meeting the educational requirements at Level 4/5. You will also be enrolled onto the Level 4 'Construction Design & Build Technician' Apprenticeship standard (Institute for Apprentcieships). This Apprenticeship will include the knowledge, skills and behaviours typically required to achieve Technician status or equivalent with the industry's recognised professional bodies.

There are five areas of study with each part ending in an integrated team based project:

  • Leadership
  • Economics
  • Design
  • Technology
  • Production

Throughout the course/apprenticeship you will be developing a range of skills, knowledge and behaviours which are key to the various roles in the construction sector.You will develop knowledge in building design, design process, construction technology, health and safety and building performance alongside transferable skills like team working, leadership, innovation and communication.

The programme lasts 2 years and offers a real alternative to full-time university. It will help you forge careers in a variety of roles which will change and evolve as your career progresses.

Off the job training will be provided by Gateshead College, graded Outstanding by Ofsted and offering state of the art construction facilities.

How will I be taught?

Learning is by a combination of lectures, tutorials, seminars, design studios, residential, field work and site visits. 

How will I be assessed?

Assessment is by a combination of examinations, coursework, projects and presentations.

Entry Requirements

This programme is not for the faint hearted.  The pace will be fast and you will be expected to excel in your development so you can progress to the next stage.  You should have already completed GCSE (Level 2) and A Level (or equivalent Level 3) study and eligible to apply for university level study in the UK.  The programme is not intended for individuals who have already completed and graduated from university.


You need 3 A Levels at grade C and above, or a BTEC Extended Diploma (averaging merits/distinctions), or the equivalent of 96 UCAS points, plus GCSE Maths, Science and English at grade 4 (C) or above.


Beyond your academic qualifications, we'll be looking for evidence that you're genuinely enthusiastic about developing a career in construction - what are your favourite buildings or structure, and why?

Whatever it is, we need to know you've thought things through and are fairly sure that this career is right for you.

You'll be analytical, methodical and good at solving problems, as well as articulate, driven and a fast learner.

We'll also ask you to tell us about times where you’ve shown motivation outside of academia – for example in playing sports, learning languages, organising a significant event or taking part in the Duke of Edinburgh Award.

We're also very keen to take on people who love working as a team because we all enjoy working with other people. So, we'll be interested in how you've worked in a group. That could be at school, with your family, in a sports team, at work, in voluntary organisations, such as the Guides, Scouts or Cadets, or as part of religious or community activities.


Stage 1: Information, Advice and Guidance

If you wish, you can attend one of our Meet the Employer events (events are listed on our events page when available) to find out more about PlanBEE and ask any questions you may have about the employment and study elements of the programme.

Stage 2: Application

Complete and submit the application form online. We will let you know we have received it.

Stage 3: Shortlisting

We will shortlist your form against the set criteria.

If you meet the criteria you will be invited for interview and assessment.

Make sure you apply as soon as you can, we don’t want you to miss out.

Stage 4: Interview & Assessment

If you are successfully shortlisted, you will be invited to attend the Assessment Centre. This will consist of a range of assessments, including literacy, mathematics, communication and problem-solving skills. You will also be invited to a formal interview with a panel of employers.

Stage 5: Success - you've got the job!

If you're successful at interview, you will be contacted within 1 week and told the good news. If not we will work with you to advise you on other options available to you.

Stage 6: Starting your employment and training programme

Once you accept, we do all we can to make joining us as straight forward as possible. You'll be put in touch with the right people immediately to make sure that you have access to a network of support right from the beginning and have all the information you need to get started on programme.

Applications are now for September 2021 will open in January 2021.

*£12,409.80 based on National Minimum Wage at age 18 from April 2020