Earn while you learn
An Apprenticeship is a real job in a real working environment, combining on and off the job training. As an apprentice, you’ll gain work experience, and achieve nationally recognised qualifications whilst earning a wage.
To start an apprenticeship you must be 16 or over and not in full-time education.
- Progress your career – employers recognise and value Apprenticeships so you will have a good foundation from which to start.
- Achieve sought after qualifications
- Learn specific skills – work alongside experienced staff to gain the best skills
- Top quality training - “on the job” experience and “off the job” training at college
- Earn a salary – be part of a team, make a difference.
Apprentices work as employees with experienced staff to gain job-specific skills, whilst working towards a number of qualifications and gaining experience. All whilst getting paid. The learning and development let apprentices get relevant skills.
Apprentices will either attend college for day/block release or receive the practical training in the workplace, this depends on the course you are studying. You will work towards completing their apprenticeship by studying technical skills and carrying out practical assessments.
Apprenticeships are changing, for further information see Apprenticeship Standards and .
Apprenticeships are changing
Due to a major government reform of Apprenticeships, the current system of ‘frameworks’ is being replaced by ‘standards’. The standards are documents listing the skills, knowledge and behaviours needed for being competent in your role.
Standards will be assessed throughout and the result graded at the end of the Apprenticeship, known as an end-point assessment. This end-point assessment must be carried out by an independent body registered on the government Register of Apprenticeship Assessment Organisations.
Who will deliver assessments?
The Skills Funding Agency (SFA) is currently trialling a system called the Register of Assessment Organisations to record all organisations suitable to assess each specific standard. Any organisation which wishes to provide independent end-point assessment will have to be on this register, comply with their quality criteria and explain how they would deliver the end-point assessment plan.
Current SASE framework Apprenticeships
- If you’re signed up to a framework, the funding system remains as is and will stay in this model for the duration of the Apprenticeship. This will continue to apply so long as starts are permitted on a particular framework.
- Frameworks will be withdrawn gradually once equivalent standards have been signed off by ministers.
- The Age Grant for Employers (AGE) will be extended to July 2017.
- From April 2016, employers no longer pay National Insurance contributions for apprentices under 25.
- Starts in 2017 on new Standards are funded using the 1:9 model. This is where the employer must contribute 10% of the agreed price of the Apprenticeship (training and end assessment) which triggers a 90% payment by the Skills Funding Agency (SFA). “In kind” payments are not permissible in this arrangement.
- The actual price is negotiable between the employer and leading learning provider. SFA will have assigned each standard to one of fifteen funding caps. The SFA will pay 90% of that capped price. These are the maximums which can be charged and a lower price can be negotiated as can the payment schedule to the learning provider.
- Additionally, there are fixed price incentive payments for each of the fifteen bands which give extra cash back for those with fewer than 50 employees, those taking on 16-18-year-olds and upon completion.
On 12 August 2016, the government published updated information about the Apprenticeship Levy proposal (Link to Govt. Website)
- The levy was announced in the government’s Comprehensive Spending Review in November 2015. The government intends to introduce it from 1 May 2017
- The levy is a 0.5% tax on an annual payroll bill for every company but only for the amount of that payroll which is over £3m.
- This applies to all employers with PAYE arrangements including the public sector. It is expected that this will only apply to 2% of employers.
- This will only apply to Apprenticeships starting from the 2017-18 financial year.
- The money raised will go into that employer’s Digital Apprenticeship Service (DAS) Account to pay for their apprentices. The DAS is currently under development by the government.
- The 98% who don’t pay the levy will get funding as part of a “co-financing” arrangement. This means the employer pays 10% of the cost of training and this will trigger the payment of the remaining 90% by the Skills Funding Agency. 20% of the overall price will be held back until the end to ensure enough is retained for the paying of the end-point assessor
- The 98% who don’t pay the levy will not have DAS accounts until at least April 2018.
- The levy payers will have 18 months to use what’s in their digital account. Because the levy is collected on a monthly basis via the PAYE system, money is taken out from the earliest contribution to prevent it being clawed back.
- The levy can only be used to fund Apprenticeships, not any other form of training, salaries, recruitment or administration costs.
- It can only be used for an employer’s English-based employees (they will check the employee’s work and home addresses).
- Companies can pool their levy payments into a group account BUT the £15k allowance will only count once.
- Levy payment to HMRC will be “allowable for Corporation Tax”.
- Employers can be learning providers so long as they are registered as such.
- All public bodies with more than 250 employees will be required to take on 2.3% of their staff as apprentices.
A Traineeship is an education and training programme with work experience that unlocks the great potential of young people and prepares them for their future careers by helping them to become ‘work ready’. Traineeships ‘bridge’ the gap between education and the world of work, addressing the longstanding concerns from employers that the schools system is not providing them with work-ready young people.
Designed to help young people aged 16 to 24 who don’t yet have the appropriate skills or experience, traineeships provide the essential work preparation training, English, Maths and work experience needed to secure an apprenticeship or employment.
A Traineeship can help those that have been unsuccessful when applying for an apprenticeship or other position due to a lack of skills and experience are most likely be good candidates for a traineeship.
Employers are not required to pay trainees for the work placement and traineeships are exempt from the Minimum Wage. As the Traineeship is unpaid, Employers are encouraged to pay for travel and lunch cost.