As industry demands increase for a new type of graduate, there is more pressure than ever before for higher education (HE) to respond by cultivating and developing students who are prepared for these workplace challenges. This paper explores an innovative experiential learning programme built on the principles of work-related learning that develops students to attain graduate qualities for competitiveness in the business sector. The role and importance of assessment as a core influence for learning is recognised and embedded into the programme, as well as the prevalence of meeting the needs of its stakeholders. Issues concerning assessing work-oriented learning are explored as well as what assessment methods might be most appropriate for enhancing and evaluating learning in this context. Feedback from stakeholders on the structure of the programme and its assessment are discussed as well as the question of how to maintain work-related programmes in HE. If such programmes continue to focus assessment and design around student learning, students will not only have the opportunity to apply their knowledge in a practical context, they will also be maximising their personal learning outcomes with the added advantage of being better equipped to compete in an increasingly competitive marketplace.