Dudley Logo

Based in the heart of the Black Country, The Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust is the main provider of hospital and adult community services to the populations of Dudley, significant parts of the Sandwell borough and smaller, but growing, communities in South Staffordshire and Wyre Forest.

The first hospital trust in the area to be awarded coveted Foundation Trust status in 2008, we provide a wide range of medical, surgical and rehabilitation services.

Currently the Trust serves a population of around 450,000 people from three hospital sites at Russells Hall Hospital, Guest Outpatient Centre in Dudley and Corbett Outpatient Centre in Stourbridge. The Trust provides the full range of secondary care services and some specialist services for the wider populations of the Black Country and West Midlands region. The Trust also provides specialist adult community based care in patients’ homes and in more than 40 centres in the Dudley Metropolitan Borough Council community.

Our hospitals are among some of the most technologically advanced in the country, where state-of-the-art equipment and modern, purpose-built buildings combine to create the highest standards of patient care.

In a year we…

  • deliver 4,700 babies
  • see around 500,000 outpatients
  • treat almost 100,000 patients in our emergency department
  • maintain our 13,000 Public Members

Our PFI partners…

  • dispose of approximately 900 tonnes of clinical waste
  • sterilise 630,000 clinical instruments
  • undertake 100,000 portering moves
  • recycle approximately 120 tonnes of cardboard

Dudley Group apprenticeship offer

Current apprenticeships

Customer Service Practitioner

Medical Administration (standard)

Accounts or Finance Assistant

Assistant Accountant

Medical Administration (standard)

Payroll Administrator

Healthcare Science

Business & Administration

Healthcare Support Worker

HR Support

Pharmacy Assistant



What our apprentice managers are saying

Ruth ShuardRuth Shuard 300x281

Principal Pharmacy Technician, Operations and Training Manager

It’s a privilege to be the Pharmacy Apprentice Manager.  To be able to witness someone take their first tentative steps into the working world to then emerge as a confident member of the workforce is a fantastic experience. The premise of apprenticeship style learning is not a new concept for Pharmacy.

Traditionally training in the workplace alongside formal education at college has been long adopted by the technical workforce. The most famous Pharmacy Technician to date being Agatha Christie. The role of Pharmacy professionals has vastly changed since she trained, the aim is still to supply the patient with medicines but it’s how this is done that has diversified. Extending the apprenticeships that Pharmacy offer seemed the natural next step.

Currently we support Business, customer service and Pharmacy services level 2 apprenticeships, in addition to the new Pharmacy technician diploma. Once qualified as a Pharmacy Technician you become a registered professional with the General Pharmaceutical Council.

The biggest challenge a Pharmacy Apprentice manager encounters is ensuring that the work placement mirrors the underpinning knowledge being taught at college. Currently there are 7 apprentices in Pharmacy and with students learning at rates it is vital as a manager to be in tune with the apprentices to ensure everyone’s needs are being met.  During the last 12 months this challenge has been amplified but out of challenges come opportunities. The apprentices have witnessed in Pharmacy how services have been adapted to respond to new service demands. They have learnt that adaptability is the key to the future success of the NHS and that they are that future.

Andrea LesterAndrea x2 197x300

Resourcing Team Manager

My name is Andrea Lester and I am the Recruitment Manager for the Trust.  The Recruitment Team manage all recruitment activities for the whole Trust including recruitment to the Trust Staff Bank. We advertise all the job vacancies on the Trust website and NHS Jobs, support managers with their shortlisting, carry out all the employment checks and issue contracts of employment. Since the apprenticeship scheme came into the Trust, I have had 5 apprentices come through the Recruitment Team, of which all but one is still working for the trust in various capacities.

The apprentices in my team have all successfully completed an NVQ Level 3 in Business Administration.

I have found managing apprentices to be a really positive experience as you feel that you are helping a young person into paid employment where they are both learning work skills alongside gaining a qualification. I have also had more mature apprentices in my team who used the apprenticeship scheme as a stepping stone to change their career path and get into the NHS which they could not have done without the scheme, due to not having the right qualifications or previous NHS experience so often required in the NHS.

The biggest challenge of managing an apprentice I found was ensuring that they are given adequate off the job time to study and complete their apprenticeship work. The NHS is a very busy work environment and often work tasks take over and study time becomes difficult to identify.

During their time with me, the apprentices not only learnt valuable work based skills, but also learnt a lot about building working relationships and interpersonal relationships with colleagues within their own team and also across the wider trust, due to the Trust wide role that the recruitment team plays. These external links proved valuable in them moving into other roles across the Trust.

I also learnt the valuable role I can play in supporting an apprenticeship by mentoring and coaching them to build confidence and teamwork skills. I was also able to impart my experience and knowledge of working in the NHS for many years and how the NHS offers a solid career pathway. I believe this encouraged the apprentices to stay with the Dudley Group or the wider NHS after their apprenticeship with me ended.

I would thoroughly recommend any manager to take an apprentice into their teams as the rewards outweigh the effort that you need to put in.

Case studies

Dudley Group apprenticeships

Vision on future apprenticeship

Whilst we will be continuing our usual Business Administration, Medical Administration, Customer Service, Pharmacy and Healthcare Assistant Programmes, we are going to be looking into the possibilities of IT Apprenticeships and Healthcare Science routes.

If you wish to contact us reference apprenticeships please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.