We have come up with 15 reasons you should be thinking about Apprenticeship training for your business.
Whether you are a large employer like American Express in Brighton or a small business like Belay Rope Access in Newhaven, taking on an apprentice has numerous advantages.
For example, if your company has a particular skills shortage, regularly recruits entry level employees or wants a blast of fresh air and new thinking, then an Apprenticeship may be the answer. The typical apprentice is eager, a digital native and will be trained to rigorous standards throughout their Apprenticeship. Apprentices want to learn and they want to work.
Have a job that needs doing? Apprenticeships work.
- It could be 100% government funded! If your business employs less than 50 people and your apprentice is aged between 16 and 18, or 19-24 and a care leaver or in receipt of an Education Healthcare Plan, then the government will fund 100% of the cost of external training. Every employer, no matter what their size, gets £1,000 funding towards the costs of employing apprentices in these categories.
- Apprenticeships are tried and tested. They are a great way to recruit new staff, re-train employees or up-skill those returning to your business after a break. You provide an induction and on-the-job training and your training provider takes care of the rest.
- Reduce your NI costs. If you employ an apprentice below the age of 25, you don’t have to pay employer National Insurance contributions for them.
- They increase productivity! With more structure to the working week, extra support from the assessor and the goal of a nationally recognised qualification, your apprentices are likely to feel more motivated and be more productive.
- Fill your skills gap. If you’ve identified a skills shortage in your business, then Apprenticeships can provide you with a low risk, low cost route to the skilled workers you need for the future – and you get your apprentices’ ideas, enthusiasm and learning from day one. Apprenticeships can be tailored to your specific job requirements and ways of working, making them flexible to the needs of your business. Your Apprenticeship training provider can make sure that what is taught in college fits your company’s ethos and systems.
- Give someone a head start. Apprentices often add energy, a different perspective, and digital know-how to your workforce, but did you know that the structure and support provided by an Apprenticeship scheme can help them focus on their career goals and build a strong work ethic? Supporting local young people into employment not only feels good but looks good. Your customers and stakeholders will thank you for doing your bit for the community
- Hiring an Apprentice doesn’t cost the earth. All apprentices are paid a minimum of £3.50 per hour for the first year of their Apprenticeship, but many employers choose to pay more than this. After the first year and if they’re over 19, you pay them at least the minimum wage for their age. But that’s still great value for a motivated employee who can support your bottom line.
- Apprentices can work full-time. Worried about days out of the office? Not all Apprenticeships require day release. Some apprenticeship training can be delivered in the workplace, meaning minimal disruption and maximum impact to your business.
- You can make the levy work for you. If your company’s wages bill is over £3 million a year, then you will have to pay the Apprenticeship levy (0.5% of your annual payroll) anyway. Convert an obligatory tax into a tangible benefit by using your accrued training funds on apprenticeships. And as the government will top-up your training fund by 10%, you’ll get out more than you put in.
- Faster than traditional recruitment. Did you know that hiring an apprentice can often be faster, simpler and cheaper than traditional recruitment, especially if you’re a small business? A good training provider account manager will help you work out exactly what you need and source great candidates. But unlike a recruitment consultant there are no fees. And because a good account manager works closely with the training assessors, they can make sure that your new employee continues to perform.
- Build the best possible workforce for your business. Want to be sure that your staff are as productive and as skilled as they can be? With Apprenticeship training, you can be confident that both new and current employees are being assessed to nationally standardised levels of training and that they will be gaining the professional skills your business needs.
- See your whole team grow. Apprentices can pass on the latest tricks and tips from college to your existing staff, who also benefit by developing additional skills like mentoring and coaching.
- Improve development opportunities for your current staff. Offering apprenticeships as a stand-alone option or as part of a suite of learning and development opportunities makes you a more attractive employer, giving you an edge in competitive markets. Ensuring existing staff grow and develop will help them feel valued and more engaged as their skills and knowledge are recognised and nationally accredited.
- Retain your staff. Apprenticeships can help reduce staff turnover by increasing existing and new employee satisfaction and loyalty – ideal for sectors such as hospitality. With a “What happens next?” plan in place you can keep that motivation going for years.
- Attract quality candidates. A great scheme will attract candidates with real potential as apprenticeships offer a fantastic alternative for talented young people put off by the cost of university.
“At City College Brighton and Hove, we were able to match a Shoreham based candidate who had registered their interest through our Student Centre with a Lancing-based business looking for an Admin Apprentice. Within two weeks Helen was in place and up and running. Everyone was delighted.”
Neil Seccombe, Account Manager, City College Brighton and Hove