FAQs - Employers
The length of an Apprenticeship varies depending on prior skills levels of the apprentice, the qualification being obtained and industry sector. Generally, Apprenticeships take between one and four years to complete.
An Apprenticeship includes the following components:
- a knowledge based element
- a competence based element
- transferable or “key skills”
- a module on employment rights and responsibilities.
Apprenticeships refer to on-the-job training leading to nationally recognised qualifications, developed by industry. The National Apprenticeship Service supports, funds and co-ordinates the delivery of Apprenticeships throughout England.
They are one and the same thing - Modern Apprenticeships were re-branded in 2004 to ‘Apprenticeships’.
Even in difficult times like these, Apprenticeships are a vital way of improving the skills of staff and generating a committed and valuable workforce. When times are tough, competition for contracts is even tougher. That’s when a well-trained, extra pair of hands could make a real difference to your chances of success.
Apprentices can also help you ready your business for when the economy comes out of recession. By offering a flexible resource that can help your business grow, apprentices can also give you a competitive advantage to exploit new business growth opportunities.
Your business may also be entitled to a grant of £1500 to help recruit an apprentice.
Because it is good business. Skills shortages are still one of the biggest threats to UK business. Apprenticeships can help businesses across all industries by offering a route to harness fresh talent. If you have trained staff with the right skills for the job they can do a wider range of tasks and take on new responsibilities - this can help to reduce skill shortages, minimise staff turnover and workplace accidents, and increase productivity. Taking on an apprentice is cost effective because your people can learn while they’re on the job and the government contributes to the costs of learning.
There are clear financial benefits to employers and their investment in Apprenticeships is repaid many times over. A recent study by the University of Warwick Institute of Employment Research found that the costs of Apprenticeship training are recouped relatively quickly, and that where the investment is nurtured, the returns are significant. Another study by Sheffield University measured the long term financial benefit to investing in Apprenticeships. A Level 3 Advanced apprentice will generate an additional lifetime benefit to themselves and their employer of £105,000 compared to someone who does not gain an Apprenticeship. The Level 2 additional benefit is £73,000. This represents a gain of £16 for every £1 of taxpayers’ money.
The Learning and Skills Council surveyed businesses throughout the UK on benefits of hiring an apprentice (Populus, January 2009). Of those surveyed:
- 81% said that employing apprentices generated higher overall productivity for their company
- 66% said that their Apprenticeship programme made them more competitive in their industry
- 92% said that their Apprenticeship programme better motivated staff and increased job satisfaction
- 74% said that apprentices tended to be more loyal, remaining at their company longer than non-apprentices.
Some of the most popular Apprenticeships at present are: Engineering, Business Administration, Construction and Hospitality.
There are more than 200 different types of Apprenticeships available offering over 1,200 job roles, ranging from accountancy to textiles, engineering to veterinary nursing, business administration to construction. They generally fall into one of three categories: • Intermediate Level Apprenticeships • Advanced Level Apprenticeships • Higher Apprenticeships
Like all employees, apprentices must still receive a wage.
The National Minimum Wage for apprentices is £2.65 per hour. However, as skills develop, many employers tend to increase wages – in fact, research has found that apprentices earn an average of £170 net pay per week. There is also the cost of the supervision, support and mentoring that you will need to put in place to support the apprentice. These associated costs are not insignificant - however, the National Apprenticeship Service will match employer’s commitment to hiring apprentices by covering in full, or in part, the training costs.
There is no employer contribution to training for apprentices under 19 years old, but a fee may apply for apprentices over 19. Please consult with your apprenticeship coordinator for further details.
Yes. Like all employees, apprentices are entitled to statutory Maternity Leave of 52 weeks with Statutory Maternity Pay for up to 39 weeks.
There are a number of elements to each Apprenticeship and this is called the Framework. This means you will get a range of qualifications as you progress through your training and education. Each Apprenticeship framework has three main strands: • A competence based element • A technical element • A skills element The three strands are sometimes accompanied by additional qualifications to give the most relevant skills and knowledge required for the job that you are employed in.
You must give your apprentice an induction into their role and provide on-the-job training. As with all employees, you are also responsible for the wages of your apprentice.
Most assessment is carried out in the workplace but there may be a requirement to take some tests.
Many different industry sectors share the same skill sets. These core skills are transferable across sectors and are built into the Apprenticeship to maximise flexibility and choice for employers and apprentices. They include:
- communication (mandatory)
- application of numbers (mandatory)
- working with others
- improving own learning and performance
- problem solving.
This varies from programme to programme. Some of the training can be in the work place and other sessions could be in college or with a learning provider. Depending on the type of job being done, or the elements of training being undertaken, it could be one day a week or a block release.
A learning provider is usually a local college or specialist training organisation responsible for an apprentice's off-the-job training. When you take on an apprentice they will appoint a mentor who will work with you to make sure that the training is well planned. Once the apprentice begins the mentor will follow their progress and deal with any issues that may arise.