ApprentiScope / Company Spotlight

ApprentiScope is a software company that helps companies scale their registered apprenticeship, pre-apprenticeship, and work-based learning programs by automating their most time-consuming and repetitive program management tasks.

Five years ago, while studying Computer Science at UVM, Will Lippolis grappled with two trends of higher education: rising costs and eroding degree value. 

These trends manifested in a heavily indebted labor force with degrees that didn’t boost earning potential or employability, according to Lippolis. That’s when he began considering registered apprenticeships as a substitute.

“There had to be an alternative to getting people into in-demand roles quickly and efficiently,” said Lippolis in an interview with VCET. “And apprenticeships have a proven track record of being able to deliver on that for both participants and employers.”

Registered apprenticeships are on-the-job training programs where employees are hired full-time from day one. They create debt-free pathways into high-paying jobs for participants and a cost-effective, reliable talent pipeline for employers. While apprenticeships have long trained professionals in the industrial and commercial construction industries, they are increasingly involving fields such as software development, cybersecurity, and healthcare.

“It became clear to me that, if we were able to scale them, apprenticeships had the potential to solve many of today’s most pressing workforce issues,” said Lippolis. “But at the time, it was simply not worth it for many companies to start a registered apprenticeship due to the added compliance requirements and the complete lack of tools available to help.”

In 2018, Lippolis founded ApprentiScope to streamline the entire lifecycle of apprenticeship management –  from recruitment to U.S. Department of Labor compliance – to empower more companies to start and scale these programs.  Since onboarding its first customers in 2019, ApprentiScope has worked with over 3,000 companies and are on track to exceed 10% of all apprentices in the country on the platform by the end of the year.

When Lippolis began developing ApprentiScope, he turned to VCET as a mentor and also began using the coworking space. 

“We needed space that wasn’t the library basement and advice on where we should go, who we should talk to, and how we should build the company,” said Lippolis. “That led us directly to VCET with Dave at the helm, who helped us a ton in the beginning.”

“Will came with a solid idea and was eager to learn more about launching a new venture,” said David Bradbury, VCET President. “Our team worked on partnerships, contracts, team building, and strategy among other areas during those early months.”

Today, ApprentiScope’s clients span entire state governments, large utility companies, community colleges, and Fortune 500 companies, like Amazon. For example, the Community College System of New Hampshire (CCSNH) contracted with ApprentiScope to ensure they have a solid data management system as they build high-quality pre-apprenticeship and registered apprenticeship pathways across the state.

“Having an easy-to-use system for managing all of the moving parts of apprenticeships has increased buy-in and energized our partners to keep going and bring on more apprentices,” said Anne Banks, Apprenticeship Program Manager at CCSNH. “We want apprenticeship to be a household name in New Hampshire.”

Since 2015, the federal government has committed more spending to these programs; both Congress and recent Presidential Administrations have backed heightened budgets of approximately $200 million annually for the registered apprenticeship system. Before then, federal funding stagnated around $30 million per year.

There’s still work to be done on the regulatory and legislative side to boost apprenticeships, according to Lippolis, but the momentum behind them continues to grow. 

“We’ve come a long way over the past few years, but we’re only just getting started,” he said.  “We’re at the bottom of a multi-decade S-curve – we’re pedal to the metal.”

Learn more about Apprentiscope’s team, product, and growth here. You can also find them on LinkedIn here


This piece was written by VCET Associate, Blaise Siefer.