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Improvement Practitioner Level 4

At Skills Training UK we go further in fully understanding what it is that our employer clients want to achieve from their training.

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We work as your partner to deliver that vision, developing stronger employees who work well as individuals and as part of a team.

Improvement Practitioners use a blend of Lean and Six Sigma, project and change management principles and tools to identify and lead the delivery of change across organisational functions and processes. They can be found across all industry sectors and functions. Typically they lead smaller projects and/or play a key supporting role in a larger programme – tackling issues that may require swift problem solving, or re-occurring challenges that require in-depth analysis and the implementation of a range of effective and sustainable countermeasures.

Typical activities include:

  • Identifying potential opportunities, diagnosing issues, proposing solutions and implementing changes and controls
  • Coaching teams and sharing best practice

Typical Job Roles: Business Improvement Practitioner, Continuous Improvement Manager, Process Excellence Manager, Lean Six Sigma Green Belt and Quality Control Senior Analyst.

Employer Commitment

The employer must be prepared to provide the learner with the opportunity to carry out work and be part of projects which will enable them to produce the substantial evidence required for completion. In order to ensure successful progression we request that employers participate in joint reviews of the learner’s progress at regular intervals throughout the apprenticeship and have some involvement with the project(s) being undertaken.


Typically this apprenticeship will take 14 to 18 months to complete.

Training and Support from Skills Training UK

During the apprenticeship the learner will have a dedicated trainer-assessor who will visit them within the work place at least once per month in order to support their learning, development of competency and generation of evidence. The knowledge modules will require formal teaching sessions which may take place within an appropriate area within the workplace or off site. This will also be supported between visits by off-site information, advice, guidance and academic progress support. The trainer-assessor will work with the learner and the employer in order to ensure that all learning needs are being met for both parties, in order to ensure successful progression againstall elements of the apprenticeship.


The entry requirement for this apprenticeship will be decided by each employer.

Requirements: Knowledge, Skills and Behaviours

Below are examples of what the Level 4 Improvement Practitioner includes.


  • Team formation and leadership – decision making techniques e.g. consensus, authority rule, majority rule
  • Project management – e.g. business case, risk analysis and management, toll-gate reviews, work breakdown structure
  • Presentation & reporting – presentation templates, message mapping, case for change
  • Change management – e.g. stakeholder identification, analysis and management (RACI), change curve, Business value of Lean and Six Sigma improvement methods – 8D, practical problem solving, Define Measure Analyse Improve Control, Design for Six Sigma
  • Project selection and scope – Y=f(x) equation (outputs are the result of inputs), business scorecard and cascade
  • Problem definition – Cost of Poor Quality, problem analysis models such as Is/Is Not
  • Process mapping and analysis – swim lane, value stream map, performance metrics
  • Data analysis – basic tools e.g. spreadsheets and pivot table analysis, statistical analysis software
  • Process capability & performance – capability analysis – continuous data for normal distribution
  • Root cause analysis – key principles e.g. symptoms, failure-mode, potential/verified cause
  • Experimentation – active versus passive analytics, design of experiments, experiment plan
  • Identification and prioritisation – selection and prioritisation matrix, Failure Mode and Effects Analysi


  • Compliance – work in accordance with organisational controls and statutory regulations
  • Communication – speak and write clearly, influence others, question effectively. Plan and deliver meetings presenting insight to engage audiences
  • Coaching – observe, listen, use questioning, provide feedback and spot learning opportunities
  • Project management – e.g. define, sequence, plan and schedule activities with phases and milestones
  • Change management – sponsorship contract, surface and manage resistance, build compelling narratives for change, assess change impact
  • Principles and methods – select and apply a structured method and appropriate improvement tools engaging with subject matter experts to deliver business benefits
  • Project selection and scoping – support the identification of improvement opportunity and the scoping of these projects
  • Problem definition – support development of problem/ opportunity statements
  • Voice of the customer – e.g. support application of techniques to identify and prioritise customers
  • Process mapping and analysis – e.g. process map to measure and analyse flow and value
  • Lean tools – seek in-process waste through understanding of value within the value stream
  • Measurement systems – plan, carry out and assess results of a measurement system study


  • Drive for results – continuous drive for change and encourages others to deliver results across functional areas capturing and standardising best practice
  • Team working – awareness of own and others’ working styles. Creates high performing team
  • Professionalism – promotes a moral, legal and socially appropriate working manner, aligns behaviours to the organisation’s values. Maintains flexibility to needs of project
  • Continuous development – proactively seeks and acts on feedback. Reflects on performance and has a desire for development. Adapts quickly to working with new situations/stakeholders/challenges
  • Safe working – ensures safety of self and others, speaks out to challenge safety issues

End Point Assessment

To successfully complete the apprenticeship, the learner needs to pass an independent End Point Assessment which consists of three distinct assessment methods:

  • Multiple Choice examination – to assess knowledge elements of the standard
  • Project report, presentation and questioning – to assess knowledge, skills and behaviours in the standard
  • Professional discussion, underpinned by the log completed during the apprenticeship