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Organisations wishing to take advantage of the Government’s cash bonus scheme for hiring apprentices have just one month left to register.
Businesses already receive £1,000 for hiring an apprentice. But an extra incentive gives employers the opportunity to earn £4,000 if they hire an apprentice of any age between April and September.
The additional support was announced in the Budget in March to help employers invest in developing a skilled workforce for the future and support young people source opportunities.
How do you apply for the apprenticeship incentive scheme?
All businesses can apply for an incentive payment for new apprentices who joined their organisation between April 1, 2021, and September 30, 2021.
Before applying, businesses must setup an apprenticeship service account. To receive the full £3,000 payme nt, the apprenticeship must last for at least one year.
The Government will pay its incentive to a business once its organisation and finance details have been received and verified. The £3,000 sum is paid in two equal instalments, firstly after the apprentice completes 90 days of their apprenticeship and secondly after 365 days.
When does the apprenticeship incentive scheme end?
Applications for the apprenticeship incentive scheme close on November 30th. To be eligible for the incentive your apprentice must have started working for your company between April 1st and September 30th, while their apprenticeship must officially start before November 30th.
If your apprentice joined your company before April 1st, you will not be bale to receive the additional £3,000. However, you could still benefit from the £1,000 incentive, if you have not already.
What can you spend the money on?
The government suggests you use the funds to cover apprentice costs, for example travel expenses, equipment and uniform. However, there are no fixed rules.
Why should I hire an apprentice?
Hiring an apprentice brings many benefits to the employer, the apprentice and current employees.
Apprentices help employers fill skills gaps, provide development programmes and source future team members from within the business. A recent Government commissioned survey revealed:
· 86% of employers said apprenticeships helped them develop skills relevant to their organisation.
· 78% of employers said apprenticeships improved productivity.
· 74% of employers said apprenticeships helped improve the quality of their product or service.
Apprenticeships are available to both new and existing employees.
Could the scheme be extended?
It is unclear if the scheme will be extended further, making it even more important for businesses looking to hire an apprentice to act now.
Ignite Sport UK Director Justin Merritt has called for incentive payments to be extended for an additional three months until the end of 2021.
He said: “Apprenticeships have been revolutionised since the turn of the millennium to support people of all ages interested in careers covering every sector. Apprenticeships will play an important role in the UK’s steady recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic and every avenue to support people finding employment should be explored.
“Hiring an apprentice provides businesses with a cost-effective staffing solution which can help to grow and develop existing teams. The best apprenticeships enable people to reskill and change career to accommodate long-term aspirations.
“At Ignite Sport UK, we are witness to the true power of apprenticeships every day and encourage other organisations to explore what they can offer.”
The true value
By law, all apprenticeships require 20 per cent of the contracted hours to be attributed to education. This can be provided via an apprenticeship provider.
Education can be provided via a blended approach which involves face-to-face learning with online training and mentoring.
Hannah Bladen, General Manager at Ignite Sport UK, said the true value of an apprenticeship comes not only from on-the-job learning, but also the education relevant to the sector.
She said: “More universities are respecting the value of an apprenticeship and many people are now using them as a steppingstone to higher education.
“While apprentices gain valuable experience in a real working environment, they are constantly in contact with their training provider to further develop their skills and work towards achieving an industry recognised qualification.”
How can Ignite Sport UK help?
At Ignite Sport UK, we provide businesses with a range of apprenticeships suitable for developing peoples’ skills in roles both on and off the sports pitch.
We work with bright, bubbly and talented people each year by providing a complete package that supports organisations’ apprenticeship employment needs.
Demand for apprentices in the sports sector has increased due to the need to support communities in encouraging people to be more physically active and improving job prospects post COVID-19.
Apprenticeships we are delivering include:
On the pitch
· Level 2 Community Activator Coach.
· Level 3 Teaching Assistant (through
· Level 3 Sporting Excellence
· Level 4 Sports Coach.
· Level 5 Skills Teacher (leading to
qualified teacher status).
Off the pitch
· Level 3 Community Health Officer.
· Level 3 Digital Marketeer.
· Level 3 Junior Content Producer.
Further information about employing an apprentice via Ignite Sport UK.