Programme length: 18 months

An operations/departmental manager is someone who manages teams and/or projects, and achieving operational or departmental goals and objectives, as part of the delivery of the organisations strategy.  They are accountable to a more senior manager or business owner. Working in the private, public or third sector and in all sizes of organisation, specific responsibilities and job titles will vary, but the knowledge, skills and behaviours needed will be the same. Key responsibilities may include creating and delivering operational plans, managing projects, leading and managing teams, managing change, financial and resource management, talent management, coaching and mentoring. Roles may include: Operations Manager, Regional Manager, Divisional Manager, Department Manager and specialist managers.


There are no formal entry requirements although we would expect candidates to have English and Maths GCSEs (or equivalent).  In addition to this candidates may have a level 3 qualification (e.g. A levels) and or some work experience relating to the standard.  Candidates also need to be in a role that will enable them to develop the evidence requirement of the programme and complete the End Point Assessment.


Outcomes and progression

By the end of the programme candidates will have:

  • The CMI Level 5 Diploma in Management & Leadership certificate
  • The Operations/Departmental Manager Apprenticeship Standard certificate
  • The opportunity register as full a member of the CMI (and use the letters MCMI after their name)

Those with over 3 years’ management experience can also apply for Chartered Manager status through the CMI.



The apprenticeship consists of three elements:

Knowledge and skills


  • Operational Management
  • Project Management
  • Finance
  • Leading People
  • Managing people
  • Building relationships
  • Communication
  • Self-awareness
  • Management of self
  • Decision making
  • Professionalism
  • Personal qualities
  • Managing performance
  • Adaptability
  • Responsibility

End Point Assessment

In the case of the Operations/Departmental Manager Apprenticeship, the End Point Assessment Organisation (EPAO) is the Chartered Management Institute.  The EPA consists of five elements:


Knowledge test

The knowledge test represents 30% of the overall marks for the EPA.  It is a scenario based online exam using multiple choice questions.


A competency-based interview

The interview  represents 20% of the overall marks for the EPA.  The interview consists of a number of structured questions designed to ensure all aspects of the knowledge required by the standard.  The interview may be conducted in writing, by phone, video conference or other online method whichever is most appropriate for the candidate.


Assessment of a portfolio of evidence

The portfolio  represents 20% of the overall marks for the EPA.  The portfolio is produce during the training programme and can include a wide range of evidence types such as written documents, recorded discussions, video presentations and/or feedback from colleagues.


Project presentation

During the training programme, the candidate will undertake a work-based project that enables the candidate to demonstrate the knowledge, skills and behaviours required by the standard.  The project should also be one that meets the needs of the employer and be conducted largely as part of the candidate’s normal work duties. The completed project is submitted to an independent assessor for review.  The candidate also presents the outcomes of the project to a panel consisting of the employer, the training provider and the independent assessor and participates in a Q&A session with the panel following the presentation.  This element of the EPA represents 20% of the overall marks.


Professional discussion

The professional discussion represents 10% of the overall marks for the EPA and focuses on all forms of learning and professional development undertaken by the candidate during the training programme.