Aptem can be used to complete, sign and counter sign documentation from all parties who use the system. Many externally funded programmes, such as the ESFA (Education & Skills Funding Agency), require the completion of compliance documentation in order to prove registration, receive funding and demonstrate outcomes.
When enabled in your organisation’s account, you can:
- Use compliance documents as electronic templates to create, for example, Commitment Statements, Individual Learner Record (ILR) and Apprenticeship Agreements.
- Sign documents electronically - this applies to users, learners, advisors and third parties (for example, employers)
- Populate documentation with relevant information stored within Aptem automatically.
- Generate signed documents in non-editable pdf format for audit purposes.
Note The ESFA has confirmed that it is no longer necessary to have a 'wet' signature uploaded into compliance documents, using physically signed documents from the 'Mandate' function.
Create or amend your eSignature
Administrators, learners, and employers will need to create an electronic signature before documents can be signed. When a learner, employer or administrator is invited to log into Aptem for the first time, they will be prompted to create a signature. If a signature is not created for any user, Aptem will prompt them to provide a signature sample when one is needed to complete a document. You can check and amend your signature at any time.
To create or amend your eSignature:
- Sign into your account.
- Click on the down arrow next to your name at the top right of the screen and choose the ‘My Profile’ option.
Your profile is shown - a user in this example.
- In the contact details section of your profile, click on create to add your eSignature. You can use a computer mouse (or finger if you have a touch-sensitive screen).
If you have an existing signature, this will be displayed in the signature section of your profile: The 'A' for Angela in this example.?? Click Save to save the new signature which will overwrite the existing one.
- A signature box is shown. Use your computer mouse or touchscreen to write your signature in the box.
- Click Save to save the new signature which will overwrite the existing one.
- Your eSignature will now be available for use on all Compliance Documents within Aptem.
Note The ESFA has confirmed that it is no longer necessary to have a 'wet' signature uploaded into compliance documents, using physically signed documents from the 'Mandate' function. However, some organisations continue by choice to use the Mandate function.
The Mandate procedure in brief, is as follows (each link in blue shows an image in a new tab of your browser):
- Check that the (no mandate) message is shown by the Signature item in the Contact details.
- Click on prepare mandate to show the eSignature declaration in a PDF file. Save and print the file.
- Write your 'wet' signature in the Participant Signature cell of the table.
- Scan or photo the declaration and save as a document or image on your computer.
- Click on upload signed mandate, then the select file button and navigate to your saved file.
- Click Save and the file will be uploaded to Aptem for counter signature by the tutor or superior to the participant.
The Mandate function will be deprecated in due course and will not be available in the Console view.
Learner / Employer Signatures and validation
Employers with an Aptem account will be automatically prompted for an eSignature. They can amend their signatures using the process described above.
Similarly, users and learners will also be prompted to create an eSignature the first time that it is needed. They can also amend their signature using the same process described above.
Learner, Employer, Administrator or End Point Assessment Organisation electronic signatures do need to be validated. The validation is done effectively by the creator of a signature: it has already been validated by the name / email / password authorised to login to Aptem. This principle is now accepted by 99% of funding bodies including the ESFA (so the Mandate facility is rarely used).
Managing Compliance Documentation
Templates for relevant compliance documents are available for each user within your account. Examples of available documents include: ILR (Individual Learning Record), Commitment Statement as well as apprenticeship agreements. Commitment statements will need to be signed by the learner, employer and provider. Apprenticeship agreements will need to be signed by the learner and employer only.
Each document will be pre-populated with information available within Aptem and can include standard texts from a funding body which can be modified by authorised Compliance Managers and staff. For example, ILRs will be populated with the learner name, contact details and other information collected directly from users via the onboarding wizard, or via the qualification aims.
All Aptem users (administrators, employers, and learners) can review the status of available compliance documents that they are responsible for signing. Users can only access their own documents.
Administrators can check the status of users in their account. Employers can also check the status of compliance documentation for their employees.
To check the status of user compliance documents:
- Sign into your administrator account.
- In the Navigation panel click on the ‘Signatures’ tile. The Compliance document signatures report will be displayed.
- The signature report shows the signature status for all compliance documents that have been created for each user in your account.
Administrators and employers can use this report facility to find and sign outstanding documents that require their signature.
The list can be searched and filtered by many criteria including username, document name and signatory status. You can sort the report by the columns simply by clicking on the column title.
Customise your search by selecting the relevant criteria and click on the Search button. Click the Reset button to restart a new search.
The filters are described in the table below:
User, Employer and Administrator Signature status dropdown lists, for example:
- No - Has not been signed
- Yes - where an eSignature has been added to the document, [the (no mandate) status will also be shown, but typically the signature mandate function is not used now].
- Yes – Has been signed successfully
- N/A - Not applicable for example Referrer.
Select a group of learners / apprentices from the dropdown list. User name / Placement name Select an individual user by partial or whole name. Document name
Select the formal document name from the dropdown list, for example, Apprentice Agreement, Commitment Statement. Document mandate
All, Yes or No - but a little used function as referred to above. Owner
Select by the Case Owner's partial or whole name from the dropdown list. The Case Owner is typically the Administrator responsible for the User / Placement named person. Employer
Select by Employer name from the dropdown list. Referrer
Select by Referrer name from the dropdown list. Not usually required to sign anything but useful to find a list of Employers referred to the organisation by an individual Referrer. Programme
Select a training programme from the dropdown list. Column Headings Click on a column heading to sort - the report is sorted by the
Customise your search by selecting the relevant criteria and click on the Search button. The results of your search are shown in the table below the Search section. In the example criteria selection above, Employers with no signature and Users with a signature were selected. The table shows automatically those elements requiring signature with the word Update in the column to the extreme right of the table
- Click Update to show the document and user for review and electronic signature.
When the signature of the employer in this example has signed, it needs only to click the Save button to be confirmed and the status updated.
- The button must be used with care. All documents selected by a list of criteria should be checked for accuracy and completeness before signature and this may be done by an assigned person before final signature by a Compliance Manager or equivalent. When that is the case, the final signatory can sample those of interest but mass sign the complete list.
Click the button to choose to view an individual record or select from the choices at the end of the list:
Click Close to take no action and close the list OR
Click Sign and Invite Employer to sign the list OR
Click Sign only and allow the Employer to choose when to sign his approval.
Notifying Employers and users to sign a document
When a compliance document has been created, all signatories (for example the learner, the employer, the tutor) will be automatically notified. This depends on who next needs to sign the document.
In Aptem the tutor or organisation’s administrator is the last person who will sign the document.
Click on the Collaboration tile and select the user (or group, other search criteria):
The notifications between users can then be used by a person with administrator permissions to view activity and check for compliance of signatures and / or create messages to the individual selected.
Example view by a person administering for Steve NCHtest in the Collaboration function of Aptem
In the example above, Steve NCHtest has provided evidence for the UVAC Commitment Statement Components Plan and the learner's administrator (a tutor or employer) receives a notification. Following the evaluation of the evidence the tutor or employer has agreed Steve Test can commit; the learner and the employer or tutor administrator receive notifications of the activity. Steve also receives an email with the details.
When Steve clicks on a blue hyperlink in a system message, the relevant document is shown, and he can click his signature block in the document and click the Save button to confirm his agreement.
If Steve has not signed within a suitable time, the tutor, employer or administrator can send a reminder message to Ross Test of the requirement to sign the document, failing which Ross will not be able to continue.
For each event Steve receives a notification from the Aptem Collaboration Centre® as well as an email informing him that he has a new message.
To put this scenario more formally: during onboarding and subsequently, there are events which require agreement, confirmation and signed agreement. These events trigger short messages (also referred to as 'notifications') to the relevant parties together with an email to the next person inline to confirm:
- The signatory must click the link and the document to be signed will be shown. Depending on the document they may be able to edit or correct some information fields. Modifiable fields will be highlighted in yellow.
- Having checked the details of the document the signatory must click in the relevant box to sign the document with their eSignature and confirm agreement. The learner / apprentice, the tutor or employer may all be signatories.
- The signatory must click on Save to confirm the signature and any changes that have been made. Or the signatory can choose not to sign, click Cancel and pursue a query, for example: an apprentice may have a query with the tutor, a tutor with the employer or a tutor or employer with a more senior person such as the Compliance Manager / organisation Administrator. An image of the eSignature will be added to the document and date stamped by the system automatically. The example below shows part of a Commitment Statement signed by the Apprentice, the Employer and the Training Provider.
- The person with administrator permissions to manage the apprentice / trainee can check the status of the documents by viewing the learner's Profile which shows the audit trail of activity:
See also Edit a Learner's Profile (Classic) – Aptem Help Centre.