12 August 2016

The Government has released further guidance today on the new apprenticeship levy.

The apprenticeship levy is due to come into effect in April 2017 with levy-paying employers able to purchase training through a new digital apprenticeship service (DAS) from the start of May 2017.

The majority of employers, around 98%, who do not contribute to the apprenticeship levy, will be invited to co-invest 10% of apprenticeship training costs, with the Government providing the additional 90%. This applies to all employers with an annual wage bill of less than £3 million.

Additional support of £2,000 per apprentice will also be available for employers hiring apprentices aged 16 to 18 and for young care leavers up to the age of 24. The Government will also contribute 100% of the training costs to these organisations if they have fewer than 50 employees, meaning it will not cost these small employers anything to train a young apprentice.

Large employers, with an annual wage bill of more than £3 million, will be incentivised to take on more apprentices with the option to co-invest 10% of training costs with the additional 90% provided by the Government, applicable to any apprenticeship training beyond what has already been spent within their DAS account.

Overall, it is expected that more than 80% of the total levy paid by employers across the country will be paid by employers with more than 250 employees.

The apprenticeship levy will also enable employers to retrain workers in new skills, even if they have prior qualifications. This flexible change will enable more employers to upskill their workforce and offer new pathways to workers who are dissatisfied with their current careers.

As part of the apprenticeship reforms, the Government will also release a register of apprenticeship training providers (RoATP) to give employers more information and choice about the training providers they work with. Employers will be able to search for training providers with the DAS and select the one that is right for their needs. Employers will also be able to select different training providers for different apprenticeship frameworks.

The Government’s proposals, if successful, will mean that all training providers who wish to deliver apprenticeship training from May 2017 must apply to the RoATP every 12 months, with applications first opening in October 2016.

This includes independent training providers, FE colleges, future Apprenticeship Companies, universities, employers and public sector organisations, but not umbrella organisations who do not deliver apprenticeship training themselves.

Employers and training providers who deliver apprenticeships are invited to respond to the Government’s funding proposals, with the survey closing on 5 September. You can complete the survey online here.

Yesterday a new report was released by the Federation of Small Businesses which highlights the potential growth for apprenticeships within small businesses, suggesting as many as an additional one million could be created if the Government gets the apprenticeship reforms right.

Apprenticeships offer both young people and adults the opportunity to gain on-the-job training while earning a wage and completing qualifications to support progression in their chosen industry.

At ABC Awards we offer apprenticeships in a range of industries and can support you in providing a full apprenticeship solution, including additional relevant qualifications like Functional Skills and Employee Rights and Responsibilities.

If you are interested in offering apprenticeships or would like to expand your current offer, click here to find out more. Employers who wish to become apprenticeship training providers and deliver their own training can find out more information here before getting in touch.

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