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1. Apprenticeship non-levy paying employers
Thousands of businesses have had first-hand experience of apprenticeships - boosting business by breeding creativity and enthusiasm with new talent, or retaining and upskilling current staff.
The government is committed to making apprenticeships even more relevant to your business: more rigorous, better structured, independently assessed and more responsive to your needs for skills in your business. We have produced a guidance page to help employers understand changes to apprenticeships.
The apprenticeship budget is growing from £1.6 billion in 2016 to 2017 to £2.5 billion in 2019 to 2020, funded by the apprenticeship levy. The levy will be paid by individual employers or those within a group that collectively has a pay bill of over £3 million from April 2017.
For non-levy paying employers, the following government apprenticeship support is available:
The ‘STEP’ arrangement provides 4 easy ways for employers to access government help to use apprenticeships to benefit business:
- Support: the government will pay 90% of training and assessment costs for the lifetime of the apprenticeship, any age, any level (up to funding band maximum).
- Teen grant: an extra £1,000 grant will be paid when employers take on a 16 to 18-year-old, or a 19 to 24-year-old that has previously been in care.
- Entrepreneur offer: employers with under 50 staff will also see 100% of training and assessment costs paid for recruiting an apprentice aged 16 to 18.
- Provision for additional support if employers take on those with additional learning needs.
Employers are not required to pay National Insurance Contributions for apprentices under the age of 25 on earnings below the higher tax rate of £827 a week (£43,000 a year).
If recruiting apprentices or upskilling your existing staff through apprenticeships and further advice and support is needed, call 0800 015 0600 or email the National Apprenticeship Service.
Update on procurement for non-levy paying employers
In April, we announced a pause on the procurement exercise for apprenticeship training provision for non-levy-paying employers.
We have made the decision to cancel the current procurement exercise. A new procurement will launch at the end of July. The new procurement will ensure the best value for employers, providers and apprentices is achieved in the move to a fully employer-led system.
While the new procurement exercise is open, the register of apprenticeship training providers will not re-open for new applications. This will not affect training provision for existing learners.
2. Apprenticeship levy-paying employers
As an apprenticeship levy-paying employer, you should now have registered on the apprenticeship service and started declaring apprenticeship levy on a monthly basis.
Here’s a quick reminder of what you need to do if you haven’t registered yet.
- Search for training using find apprenticeship training.
- Register for the apprenticeship service and:
- create an account
- add one or more organisations
- add one or more PAYE schemes
- invite members of your team so they can use the apprenticeship service
- add apprentices to your account so you can pay the training providers you choose for apprenticeship training
- declare your apprenticeship levy by the 19th of each month, otherwise, you won’t receive your levy funds in that month
If you don’t add any apprentices to your account, your training provider will not get paid. The data your training provider sends to us must match the information you approve for each apprentice in the apprenticeship service.
Call the National Contact Centre helpline on 08000 150 600 or email Helpdesk@manage-apprenticeships.service.gov.uk for help with:
- technical queries about the apprenticeship service
- general apprenticeship information and queries
- accessing the service
Call the HMRC Employer helpline on 0300 200 3200 with queries relating to:
- general levy collection
- calculating the levy
- connected company questions
- calculating the English percentage
Apprenticeship reform is giving organisations the opportunity to review their approach to learning and development, according to the employers who took part in a Q&A session at the Chartered Management Institute’s 2017 Partner Conference, held recently in Birmingham. You can find case studies from some of the employers who took part on the Chartered Management Institute’s website.
3. National Apprenticeship Awards 2017
The search to find England’s top apprenticeship employers and apprentices and to recognise those individuals who have made a significant contribution to apprenticeships has drawn to a close.
Now in its 14th year, the National Apprenticeship Awards 2017 regional ceremonies will take place during October. Follow @Apprenticeships on Twitter to keep up to date with news on the awards.
4. Which? University Guide
The National Apprenticeship Service has teamed up with Which? University to develop a free, downloadable guide to higher and degree apprenticeships. The guide explains how apprentices can earn while they learn in a range of sectors and job roles. Download the guide and share within your network: Which? University Guide.
5. Brathay Apprentice Challenge 2017
On 14th June, GSK Ulverston were crowned winners of the Brathay Apprentice Challenge 2017. The team of 9 apprentices won the challenge based on their regional activity, community project and performance in the final, which included a presentation and physical and mental challenges.
Nottingham City Homes were second place; with JCB finishing in third place. Derwent Training Association, IBM, Redrow Homes, Severn Trent Water and WSP also completed in the final.
The challenge this year has been a huge success, with:
- 75 teams entering
- 555 school visits – up 42% from last year
- 506 new employers recruited – up 25% on last year
Through the Brathay Apprentice Challenge, since 2011:
- almost 2,000 school visits
- 475,000 young people spoken to about apprenticeships
- 549 business events
- 1,071 employers will now offer apprenticeships
- contributing an additional £41m to the country’s GDP
You can read about the challenge and the successful team on GOV.UK.