When planning and working towards meeting the Gatsby Benchmarks, Benchmark 1 is where you are likely to start and it’s also where you will likely return to. Benchmark 1 focuses on the structure and organisation you must have in place to support the delivery of your Careers Education Information Advice and Guidance (CEIAG) programme and also it’s review and evaluation.

Benchmark 1 is the “big” Benchmark that wraps around the rest.

Let’s break it down and look at it from the perspective of our Investor in Careers model which provides a clear framework to help with the development and accreditation of a Quality CEIAG programme. Our approach is to help you evidence how you are meeting Benchmark 1but also go beyond to meet the Quality in Careers Standard through our CODE approach of Commitment, Organisation, Delivery and Evaluation.

  • There should be evidence of a “whole school” approach to CEIAG that secures effective day to day leadership, management and delivery of the programme with a supported Careers Leader.
  • There should be a link governor with CEIAG responsibility and evidence of the governing body’s active involvement to support the implementation of the careers programme and meet statutory duties. This demonstrates Commitment and also requires that Governors and staff are developed and trained to be confident and competent to carry out their CEIAG responsibilities which link to the other Benchmarks.
  • There should be a planned and coherent approach to CEIAG that is formalised in a published CEIAG Policy which we can advise on.
  • Stakeholders should be aware of and understand the careers programme so they are able to contribute and get the best from it. This goes beyond just publishing it.
  • You should know what stakeholders think about your careers programme and how it can continue to be improved which results from evidence based review and evaluation.

Our Investor in Careers CODE approach, which has underpinned our long standing track record as the first careers quality award, is best considered as cycle which helps you embed the principles of continuous quality improvement.

Ultimately, you should be able to evidence career learning development, positive impact and improved outcomes for your learners resulting from your CEIAG programme.