Walsall College were named award finalists in the Institute of Bookkeeping’s (ICB) LUCA Awards. The college was recognised in the Apprenticeship Training Provider of the Year category in lieu of its successful delivery of the Payroll Administration Apprenticeship Standard.
The LUCA Awards are the ‘Oscars’ of the bookkeeping profession, presented in recognition of the year’s outstanding bookkeepers and the many organisations and software services that complement their valuable work. The LUCA Awards themselves are exclusive statuettes of Luca Pacioli, the Cistercian monk credited with first documenting the process of double-entry bookkeeping that endures today.
Rachael Smith, Director of Faculty – Apprenticeships and Work-based Learning said: “This is the first year we’ve delivered this Standard and we couldn’t have got off to a better start, with 100% pass rate among apprentices trained so far and now this acknowledgement from the ICB.
“We’re proud of the apprentices who worked so enthusiastically to achieve their qualification during lockdown. The apprentices went above and beyond in their efforts to demonstrate their understanding through relevant real-life examples that matched their newly acquired knowledge and skills around payroll calculations, legislation and pensions.
“Each learner has now either joined or remained with their apprentice employer as a payroll professional or taken their expertise into a new role where we know their careers will flourish.
“We look forward to building on this track record in future with new groups of learners and a bigger variety of employers.”
Employers the college has delivered the Payroll Apprenticeship Standard with include Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust and DPDgroup.
Reena Farmah, completed her qualification while working as a HR and Governance Officer with St Chads Academy Trust in Lichfield.
“I’m so happy the college was in the running for this award,” she said. “Work-based learning has its challenges but these are outweighed by the benefits which include a wider choice of career progression opportunities, professional recognition and a huge sense of accomplishment when you have gained your qualification. It’s so rewarding and impacts on your confidence and personal growth too.”
Now a democratic services officer with Walsall Council, Reena added: “The support we received from Debbie, our vocational coach at the college was second to none. We all achieved so much more under her guidance.”