Digital Degree Apprentice (Software Development)

Job reference: 001128

Location: Leeds

Closing date: 30/11/2019

Salary: £21,089

Employment type: Fixed Term

Hours per week: 37.5

About the role
Software lies at the heart of all our daily lives. Many of our interactions are now through applications and services. The quality of these interactions is massively influenced by well-designed software.

This is an opportunity to join NHS Digital and create the software that will transform services across health and care, including national systems and those targeted at specific areas and users. You will join teams from across the organisation, learning from highly motivated experts and contribute to our successful deliveries.

Over the 4 years you get the opportunity to work on different teams and projects to help you get a greater understanding of the kinds of roles we have in Software Development at NHS Digital.

You will start on a 2-year fixed-term contract in the Academy, on successful completion of you will be assessed and as a professional could be earning up to £30K

How we work:

  • Multi-functional end-to-end agile development teams
  • Open Source and commercial technologies
  • Value-driven to solve real user problems

As a trainee you won't be on your own, you'll work in a multidisciplinary team alongside experienced software developers and trainees like yourself. Along with the wider team, a career mentor and growing trainee community your support network couldn’t be better.

You may learn and be involved in:
• Coding including Python, C#, Java .Net & PHP
• Working in agile delivery teams
• Cloud based computing (AWS and Azure)
• Growing use of Artificial Intelligence/Machine Learning.
• Everything from internal R&D projects to national, enterprise scale systems affecting people’s lives daily including:
• Cancer screening systems
• Supporting the flow of data from across care nationally for secondary use
• Directory of Services – underpins the NHS 999 and 111 services.
• Full stack DevOps engineering including automation of testing, build, deployment and operation of systems.


Examples of the types of teams you could be working with include:

  • The Spine, known as the “technological backbone of the NHS”, connects clinicians and patients to national services such as the Electronic Prescription Service, Summary Care Record and the e-Referral Service, which allow clinicians to deliver safe and effective care to patients. NHS Spine stores around 150TB of data. This includes the details of 80 million people and 2.6 billion requests for information and associated amendments.
  • NHS.UK. The main public facing NHS website. It provides health related information and tools including: Health A-Z, lifestyle advice, performance data & patient ratings. It’s a cloud hosted, enterprise level website built by multi-disciplinary teams using a mixture of commercial and open source software. It gets 1.5m visits a day and has 228k twitter followers.


  • An apprenticeship is a combination of employment provided by us and your apprenticeship training provided by QA. During the 4 years you will complete a BSc (Hons) in Digital & Technology Solutions Degree following the software engineer specialism.
  • Please see the University of Roehampton’s programme information here

Who we are looking for people who are:

  • Interested in code, this may be in work, study or personal projects.
  • Passionate about making a difference on a national scale.
  • Dedicated to learning and development

Eligibility requirements of the apprenticeship include

  • A-Levels or Level 3 qualifications including STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) subjects or equivalent (NVQ/SVQ Level 3, or a BTEC National).

Please note that, due to the funded nature of this programme, applicants with undergraduate degrees in computing/ IT are not eligible.

Who we are

At NHS Digital we are working to bring about a digital revolution in the provision of health and care. Our aim is to secure a financially sustainable future for the universal care system of which we are all so proud. What we do enables health and care professionals to care for people safely and more effectively.

We power the research that is developing new ways of tackling disease and fully support the role the Government wants the NHS to play in keeping the UK at the forefront of life sciences research.

In the future, the information we make available and the technology systems we build will mean health and care provision in our communities can be brought closer together to make it more efficient and effective. We will give people the information and digital tools they need to support their own health and care choices and outcomes and enable health and care professionals to work more productively.

What we offer

On successful completion of the scheme you will be assessed and as a professional could be earning £30K+. Entrants to the scheme would be earning £21K+ on a two year fixed term contract.

Great work deserves great reward. In return for your ideas, dedication and ambition, we'll give you a competitive salary and NHS benefits including:

  • 27 days annual leave
  • Flexible working opportunities
  • 14% contribution to your NHS pension
  • A range of NHS Discounts covering, for example, shops, restaurants, gym, mobile phones, and insurance – including 20% off Nandos
  • Travel season ticket loan
  • Car Lease scheme

What’s next?

Following your application, you will be invited to complete an online assessment then, if shortlisted, invited to complete an online interview. 
Successful applicants will be invited to attend an assessment centre in Leeds in February. Job offers will be issued shortly after.

This vacancy will close to new applications when a sufficient number have been received. This means applications are accepted on a first come, first served basis.

Roles at NHS Digital are subject to a basic Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check and as such it will be necessary for a submission for Disclosure to be made to the Disclosure and Barring Service following an acceptance of an offer of employment. Basic checks provide details of convictions and conditional cautions that are considered to be unspent under the terms of the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974.


The closing date for this job has now passed.