What you need to know


The ins and outs of apprenticeships

Apprenticeships are government-funded training programmes designed to build a skilled workforce. With a mix of formal training, on-the-job experience and recognised qualifications, they offer young people a practical start to their careers.

While you pay your apprentices at least £3.30 an hour, your business can get funding to help the process. Depending on the apprentice’s age, your funding could cover their full training costs and more – while there are also potential other benefits, like reduced NI contributions.

Apprenticeships run to a set programme with training goals and pathways, but with 150 different routes that can be tailored to fit your needs and aims, it’s a system with real flexibility.

Some routes are sector-specific or even role-specific, like a Teaching Assistance, Childcare or Retail, while others offer skills that could benefit any employer, like Business Administration, Customer Service or Team Leadership. Depending on the programmes, it takes between a year and three years. Throughout that time, they’ll follow structured training activities, either in the workplace or at a local college or university.

An apprenticeship can be a way of recruiting a new member of your team for the future, but you can also use it as a structured training programme for existing members of your team, helping your staff realise their full potential. Either way, we’re here to help.

The Apprenticeship Levy

Starting in Spring 2017, the government will start funding apprenticeships through a special levy. If your pay bill is over £3 million, your business will pay a rate of 0.5% of that amount. Businesses will then access apprenticeship funding through a online account, which you can set up through the digital apprenticeship service.

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