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Ford Dealer Apprenticeship Programme

About the Ford Dealer Apprenticeship Programme

Henry Ford Academy - Daventry

The Ford Dealer Apprenticeship Programme (FDAP) successfully recruits 500 new Apprentices into the Ford dealer network every year.

Today’s cars and commercial vehicles are the miracles of modern engineering and computer technology. Apprentices on the Ford Dealer Apprenticeship Programme can be assured that they will receive the highest standard of training to work with Ford vehicles.

The Ford Dealer Apprenticeship Programme (FDAP) is managed and co-ordinated for Ford by Skillnet Limited.

The Ford Dealer Apprenticeship Programme is an approved Apprenticeship Scheme – with a range of programmes lasting between 12 months and 3 years. Our technical programmes combine hands-on workshop training with block release for college training and study. Our non-technical programmes are delivered in your workplace

Not only will Apprentices be trained to the standards set by IMI, the Sector Skills Council for the Motor Industry, the Apprenticeships also lead to Apprenticeship and Advanced Apprenticeship qualifications. These are nationally recognised qualifications which involve them learning new skills that they can apply every day at work.

Opportunities Available

Apprenticeships include:

  • Car Technician
  • Van Technician
  • Fast Fit Technician
  • Service Advisor
  • Accident Repair Centre Advisor
  • Parts Advisor
  • Vehicle Body Mechanical Technician
  • Vehicle Body Panel Technician
  • Vehicle Body Paint Technician
  • Vehicle Sales Executive
  • Commercial Vehicle Sales Executive
  • Management
  • Team Leading
  • Business Administration

Entry Requirements

To become a Ford Apprentice applicants must have a genuine interest in the automotive industry and meet an acceptable academic standard – the preference being a minimum of 3 GCSEs, grade C or above

Apprentices are usually recruited straight from school aged 16-19 years, although opportunities exist for applicants outside this age range. Where new vacancies exist, suitable applicants will be invited to take a standard entry test to assess their aptitude. This will enable the dealer to choose the candidate(s) best suited to a place on the Ford Dealer Apprenticeship Programme.

So for Applicants who have what it takes to become a fully qualified Ford Apprentice, Apply Now!

Working in a Dealership as an Apprentice

When our customers purchase their Ford, our job is not complete. In fact we see it as just the beginning of our relationship. Our commitment is to give customers all the support they need to help them get the most from owning their Ford.

Like any vehicle, a Ford vehicle needs servicing regularly to keep it in the best condition and to maintain its value. Only a Ford dealer has Ford-trained technicians, Ford-specific tools and the latest computerised diagnostic equipment. And all Ford dealers use original Ford parts, designed and engineered to fit and perform perfectly.

The Ford Dealer Apprenticeship Programme gives Apprentices the chance to join the group of specialist technicians working on some of the most modern, sophisticated cars on the road. And it’s not just a job. It’s the first step in a career that gives them the opportunity to advance, succeed and fulfil their ambitions in the motor industry.

Equally, Apprentices studying one of our customer service, sales or service advisor qualifications will form a key part of the team of people who make sure our customers’ experiences of buying and owning a Ford vehicle are second to none.

Working in Ford Customer Service

Centres of Learning for Apprentices

Proper training develops both practical skills and theoretical knowledge. The practical skills and hands-on experience Apprentices need is gained in fully equipped dealer workshops, whilst the training and knowledge needed to support them will come through attending one of the nationwide network of Ford Masters Approved UK training centres. There are training centres appointed across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland to deliver the FDAP. Each training centre is closely monitored by Ford to ensure that it meets the highest standards of training required.

Alongside other Ford Apprentices from around the country they will be specially trained on Ford vehicles in all aspects of vehicle servicing, repair and maintenance. Specialist instructors and excellent workshop facilities will equip them to be one of the most skilled technicians on an Apprenticeship programme that is regarded as the best in the industry. After 2-3 years, technical Apprentices  will leave College with an Advanced Apprenticeship.

Whilst at college Apprentices stay in approved accommodation. All of their bus or train fares, accommodation and living expenses will be paid for by their employing Ford dealer who will also provide books and other necessary equipment.

The Henry Ford Academy at Daventry

Henry Ford Academy - Daventry

The Henry Ford Academy at Daventry specialises in qualified adult and Apprentice learning for Ford. Spacious classrooms and well-equipped workshops create an ideal learning environment. The Henry Ford Academy at Daventry delivers bespoke car and van education and technical training to the highest standards in the industry.

Lagta Centre of Excellence, Scotland


The Lagta Centre of Excellence is purpose-built to create an ideal learning environment for Apprentices training on the FDAP in Scotland. Situated on the new Eurocentral Business Park, near Glasgow, it has easy access to the M8.

Cardiff and Vale College (CAVC)


Cardiff and Vale College (CAVC) is one of the largest colleges in Wales - transforming education and training across the capital region of Wales. It is one of the largest automotive training providers in the UK and the largest in Wales, Cardiff and Vale College Automotive Training Centre offers a tailor made, bespoke and responsive service to meet the needs of today's modern, efficient vehicle repair industry.

Blackpool and The Fylde College


Blackpool and The Fylde College is one of the UK's leading Further Education colleges and an OFSTED grade 1 outstanding college. The college was recently awarded the prestigious Queen's Anniversary Prize for Higher and Further Education Excellence regarding our partnership work with employers. 

Blackpool and The Fylde College holds STEM  (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) Assured Status in recognition of their industry-led skills training. Much of this is delivered at their Advanced Technology Centre, a new £multi-million facility that represents a centre of excellence for advanced engineering, technology and automotive solutions across Lancashire.

Bridgwater College, Somerset

Bridgwater College

Bridgwater College is an Ofsted Outstanding College. Its Automotive Department is the lead partner in the National Motor Industry Skills Consortium of Colleges. It prides itself in offering consistent high quality teaching and training in all automotive vocational areas, throughout all of its high quality facilities. 

Transport Training Services, Northern Ireland

Transport Training Services

As an Automotive Sector dedicated training centre, rated ‘outstanding’ in 2015 by the Education & Training Inspectorate, the TTS team is committed to delivering the skills needed by Ford dealers in NI. The new building and recent investment in workshop modernisation also help to keep TTS delivery of training up to date.




A qualification as an automotive technician or any of the other specialisms offered through the FDAP is a passport for a long term career in one of the most exciting industries in the UK and worldwide. Successful Apprentices have gone on to develop excellent careers within the dealers they trained in. Some have gone on to become Service Managers, Dealer Principals or After Sales DIrectors. Others have taken their careers in a different direction and gone on to successful careers with automotive manufacturers, suppliers and other associated businesses. A qualification can also be a passport to careers outside of the UK. Qualified, experienced, UK trained personnel are in high demand across the globe.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ's)

Who is eligible to join a Ford Dealer Apprenticeship programme?

There are no set entry requirements for Apprenticeships, although some of the employers we work with prefer applicants to have 3 GCSE passes at grade “C” or above.

What happens in the Apprentice application process?

Our selection process is a rigorous job application process. Applicants will be interviewed and asked to take tests to see if they are the right person for the employers we are recruiting for.

Are there different types of Ford Apprenticeships available?

Depending on the career route chosen there are different types of Apprenticeship available. Choosing the right Apprenticeship will depend on your experience and the employment opportunities in your area. However, all Apprenticeships include the following basic elements:

  • Vocational Competence Qualification (VCQ) at either Level 2 or Level 3
  • Functional Skills qualifications, and a technical certificate awarded by IMI or City & Guilds or a similar awarding organisation

How long does a Ford Apprenticeship take?

Technical qualifications in the motor industry usually take about 18 months for Apprenticeships followed by a further 12 -18 months to become an Advanced Apprentice. Most employers prefer Advanced Apprentices when promoting staff. The length of time taken will depend on ability and employers' requirements but Apprentices need to demonstrate a large degree of commitment to see it through.

Non-technical Apprenticeships in Sales, Customer Service, Business Administration and other related subjects typically take between 12 months and 2 years.

How do Apprenticeships work?

Employers pay their Apprentices wages and provide on-the-job training which allows them to achieve their qualifications. Apprentices also spend time with Skillnet gaining skills that will be useful in the job market - like working in teams, problem-solving, communication and using new technology. In addition, they may study with us for a technical certificate, which will give them further knowledge and understanding of their job. Technical Apprentices usually attend one of our centres of learning for blocks of one or two weeks at a time.Non-technical apprenticeships are usually delivered in the workplace.

How much are Apprentices paid?

There is legislation that sets minimum rates of pay for Apprentices. We typically advise employers to pay rates which meet these requirements and reflect their local job market. We select the employers we work with carefully to make sure that they can provide Apprentices with a safe work place and that they will support them in gaining their qualification and developing their careers.

What sort of person is accepted on an Apprenticeship?

Applicants need to be:

  • Serious
  • Committed
  • Able to show that they have fully researched the area of work they want to do and that they are the right person for the job
  • Aware of their responsibilities to themselves and to the company they work for
  • Prepared for further study and realistic about the amount of work they may have to do
  • Happy to work as both part of a team and an individual
  • Able to use their own initiative

Apprenticeships can be demanding, but very rewarding. It's not just a question of seeing what is available and then selecting a career path. It helps if Apprentices are focused enough to know what they want to do before they apply.

Do Apprentices get holidays?

Like many other employees, Apprentices will receive at least 20 days holiday per year (and bank holidays). Their individual entitlement will be detailed in their terms of employment. Just like any other job, employers will have rules about how far in advance holidays need to be booked, and times that holidays cannot be taken.

What qualifications do Apprentices get when they have finished their Apprenticeship?

They will get a package of qualifications when they finish their Apprenticeship - a National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) or Vocational Competence Qualification (VCQ), a technical certificate such as an IMI certificate or a City & Guilds Progression Award, and Functional Skills qualifications. Apprenticeships lead to either a Level 2 or Level 3 package of qualifications.

How do NVQs and VCQ's relate to other qualifications?

Broadly speaking, there are five levels of NVQ / VCQ:

Level 1 = 5 GCSEs at grades D-G

Level 2 = 5 GCSEs at grades A-C

Level 3 = 2 A levels

Level 4/5 = HNC, HND and degree level

Are their age restrictions on becoming an Apprentice?

No. Providing applicants have officially left school they can enrol in an Apprenticeship.