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Students go from strength to strength supported by the Welsh Government's procurement placement programme through collaboration with public sector partners.

First published:
19 October 2023
Last updated:

Thirteen students from Welsh Higher Education Institutes have benefited from sandwich placements part of their BSc (Hons) Logistics, Procurement and Supply Chain Management Degrees. This provided them with an opportunity to put procurement theory into practice and deliver the Well-being of Future Generations Act.

We launched the all-Wales pilot student placement programme in 2020 to grow capacity and attract new talent into the procurement profession. The first tranche of students secured places within procurement and commercial teams in 2021 across the Welsh public sector.

The programme provided additional capacity on projects across key commercial areas, while equipping the students with the skills to deliver Well-being of Future Generations Act and the principles of the Wales Procurement Policy Statement.

Welcoming the initiative, Ian Evans, Procurement and Information Manager Caerphilly County Borough Council said:

 “It’s an excellent and very successful programme, which for several years has allowed Caerphilly Council to nurture and grow procurement professionals of the future, playing a fundamental role in helping build capability and capacity in public sector procurement within Wales. The programme allows students the opportunity to be exposed to a wide variety of business practices, processes and procedures, whilst allowing them to develop in the procurement discipline and importantly bring a fresh and positive approach to the profession. Undoubtedly a very positive, worthwhile, and rewarding resource for Caerphilly Council and it has been an absolute pleasure to be part of the programme and long may it continue”.

Further Welsh Government funding in 2022 enabled us to increase the placement arrangements allowing additional student opportunities to be supported coupled   with Foundational Economy investment bolstering continued critical commercial activity.

Building on the success of the South Wales Programme, we started a North Wales test programme was for the 23/24 financial year with two successful placements from non-procurement backgrounds. This demonstrates the strength of student placements to raise the profile of procurement and attract new talent into the profession.

Of 5 students places in the first test year, four secured permanent public procurement posts.

Scott Parfitt, USW Course Leader said,

“The Welsh Government student placement scheme adds real value to students and frontline procurement. This is one of a few initiatives that adds much needed capacity to front line public procurement. The students benefit immensely from the scheme by gaining industry experience working in mature procurement functions. The employment track record has been excellent with students from the scheme being retained in Welsh Public Procurement”.

Considered a key part of the commercial teams, the students are immersed in the day-to-day operation within the procurement function gaining valuable experience as they develop.

Connor Thomas, Caerphilly CBC added,

“Working for Caerphilly Council has given me the opportunity to work on a wide range of procurement processes which has greatly improved my practical understanding of key procurement processes”.

Through continued programme growth, the Welsh Government hopes to continue to offer support in collaboration with HE and public procurement teams and support the much-needed capacity creation.

Further information

For more information about this programme, contact