What’s an apprenticeship?
An apprenticeship is a genuine job and under all circumstances an apprentice will be employed from day one. Apprenticeships combine practical training in a job along with study.
An apprentice will:
- work alongside experienced staff
- gain job-specific skills
- earn a wage and get holiday pay
- be given time for study related to their role (at least 20% of normal working hours)
Who can start an apprenticeship?
To start an apprenticeship, you’ll need to be:
- 16 or over
- living in England
- not in full-time education
If you’re a UK employer with an annual payroll of more than £3m, you must pay a levy which is to be used for the training and assessment of apprentices in your organisation. You’ll fund your apprenticeship through a digital levy account to which Government adds 10%. If you exceed the credit in your account, the Government will contribute 95% of these extra costs.
If you’re a non-levy paying organisation, you’ll pay for 5% of the cost of the apprenticeship, up to the Government funding rate, and the Government will pay the rest of the cost to the learning provider. Click here for more information about funding.
There must be a job available with a contract of employment covering the time period of the apprenticeship. Employers must pay an apprentice’s wages and the role must help them gain the values, knowledge, skills and behaviour they need to achieve the apprenticeship with support from the employer.
All employers should work with a learning provider who delivers the apprenticeship programme for them and who must be on the Government Register of Apprenticeship Training Providers (RoATP).
You can talk to your regular training provider to check if they deliver the apprenticeship standard or alternatively, Skills for Care have a search directory where you can find endorsed providers.
The benefits from taking on apprentices
According to research by Skills for Care, each apprentice will increase business revenue by almost £10,000 over the course of their apprenticeship.
And employers say they believe using apprenticeships helps improve recruitment processes, reduces costs, improves productivity, raises the organisation’s profile and improves the quality of care.
Apprenticeships are built around the needs of the employer. It’s a work-based programme of learning - for a specified amount of time - leading to a recognised qualification or set of qualifications.
An apprenticeship can take anywhere from 12 months to two years to complete, depending on the level of the apprenticeship and the number of hours the apprentice will be working. In order to cover all of the criteria, a minimum of 30 hours a week is recommended.
You can find more information from the following links:
- Visit Skills for Care
- Apprenticeship Standards
- Employer guide to apprenticeships from Gov.uk
- Presentation on the new world of apprenticeships
Here's a useful sheet showing a table of the new roles and the training and testing needed: