Editor's message: The Government is hoping that an increased use of apprenticeships will help to improve the UK's productivity levels and address skills shortages.
Apprenticeships are in-work training programmes under which the apprentice engages in on- and off-the-job learning and development activities that will lead to a work-based qualification.
As well as being a way of attracting school leavers to your organisation, apprenticeships can be used to develop the skills of your existing staff as part of their ongoing training and development. There are levels of apprenticeship available from equivalent to GCSE up to a bachelor’s or master’s degree.
A new funding system for apprenticeships, the apprenticeship levy, was introduced in April 2017. If your organisation has a paybill of more than £3 million you must pay the levy (set at 0.5% of the paybill), and employers that operate in England - regardless of their paybill size - can claim funding from the levy to pay for apprenticeship training and end-point assessment.
Rachel Sharp, HR practice editor
Training providers have called on the government to remove the highest and degree level apprenticeships from the scope of funding in order to relieve growing pressures on the apprenticeship levy.
Employers are four times more likely to worry about how their apprentices dress for work than they would about graduates, a survey by the Institute of Student Employers has revealed.
Updated to reflect the Spring Statement 2019 announcement that the reduction in the co-investment rate and the increase in the amount of levy credit that employers can transfer to another employer will come into effect on 1 April 2019.
Most single parents are being locked out of apprenticeships because of a lack of part-time opportunities and the difficulty of supporting children with such low pay.
The government is unlikely to reach its target of 3 million new apprenticeships by 2020 and there are "concerns about the programme's long-term sustainability", according to a damning report from the National Audit Office.
The government should remove any barriers preventing young women embarking on apprenticeships, according to a report published today by the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Women and Work.
Employers are becoming increasingly concerned for their ability to recruit sufficient numbers of graduates for technical roles as Brexit looms, a survey has found.
Apprenticeship starts in the first quarter of the 2018-19 academic year have risen in relation to figures reported at this time in 2017-18, but lag behind equivalent figures reported in January 2016 and 2015.
HR and legal information and guidance relating to apprenticeships.