Covéa Insurance launches in-house university degree

21st August

Covéa Insurance is pleased to announce the launch of a tailored university degree with funding from the Government backed apprenticeship levy that came into effect in April this year. Five higher level apprentices have been recruited who will study for a degree in Software and Web Development alongside working in the company’s IT team.  The degree will take four years to complete, just one year longer than a conventional full-time degree, and the apprentices will be paid employees for the duration of their studies, graduating with a full-time job, and no student loan to pay back.

The Covéa Insurance Software and Web Development degree is just one element of a wider skills development programme that will see the company make an investment of almost half a million pounds into professional education and training qualifications over the next two years. The company believes that having a wider range of courses will present opportunities for new and existing employees at all levels, keen to learn new skills and improve their long-term job prospects.

The degree has been developed in partnership with an external university and training provider, giving it the rigour and standing of a conventional degree, with the added benefit of practical ‘on the job’ training. The company will continue to offer its traditional apprenticeship programme for school leavers and its graduate training programme for new graduates.

In addition to the new university degrees, Covéa Insurance has plans in the pipeline to use the apprenticeship levy to introduce additional new training opportunities to upskill its team even further, with a ‘Connoisseur Course’ for those wanting to develop expertise in their field, and a ‘Leadership Academy’ which will enable managers with significant people responsibility to obtain a professional Management qualification and a degree in Management.

Matthew MetcalfeMatthew Metcalfe, Claims Manager at Covéa Insurance has been part of the team leading the changes, he comments:

“A lot of businesses have written off the apprenticeship levy as another tax. At Covéa Insurance, we see it as an opportunity to invest in our workforce and equip our people with the skills needed for our future growth and success. The recruitment of our first five degree apprentices is just the start. Our aspiration is to have 10% of our workforce on an ‘earn and learn’ journey within five years.”

The apprenticeship levy, which came into effect in April this year, is a percentage of the annual wage bill all companies must pay if their annual wage bill exceeds £3 million.  Covéa Insurance wants to make maximum use of the funds available, using the widened eligibility criteria to address skills gaps and upskill its workforce.

Matthew explains:

“The funds raised through the apprenticeship levy and the relaxing of rules around how these funds can be used has created a real opportunity to invest in our business by developing our people.  It will allow us to ‘grow’ our own talent in-house much more cost effectively. This is especially useful in parts of the business where recruitment costs are high or where there’s a skills shortage, such as in IT. It also provides those individuals who want to use technical skills to reach leadership positions with a new route in, helping us to create a more diverse and inclusive workforce.”

5 apprentices selected for university degree

 

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About Covéa Insurance

Covea Insurance plc is the UK underwriting business of leading French mutual insurance group Covéa, who are number 1 for property and liability insurance in France and served 11.5 million policyholders, generating over 16.3 billion Euros in premiums in 2016.  

Covéa Insurance handles the insurance needs of 1.5 million policyholders; delivering financial reassurance through its Standard & Poor’s A+ stable rating, as a guaranteed subsidiary of Covéa. 

The company offers motor, household, protection, mid and high net worth insurance and a range of commercial insurance products, designed to meet the needs of most individuals and businesses. Employing over 1500 people, Covéa Insurance has a strong people and service ethos, having Investors In People Gold accreditation and featuring in the 2015 and 2016 Sunday Times Top 100 Mid-sized Best Companies to Work For. It also has World Class service accreditation from the Institute of Customer Service for its Motor Claims, Home Claims and Underwriting Services teams as well as Chartered Insurer status for its Commercial and Mid/High Net Worth business.

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