19 Mar Making the most of the apprenticeship Levy fund
3 Minute Read
There are typically three types of apprenticeship starters: career starters, career changers, and the upskilled. According to a government report, employers were largely using their levy to upskill existing staff rather than to recruit younger career starters or people seeking to change careers.
This previously common preference amongst employers towards apprenticeships at higher levels was largely driven by an employer’s decision to use the apprenticeship levy to upskill existing staff rather than recruit new staff.
What can employers use the levy fund for?
Employers can utilise their apprenticeship levy funding to provide apprenticeship training, including the end-point assessments for the apprenticeship standard programmes run within their organisation. This funding can only be accessed when working with an approved training provider and/or assessment organisation.
What are employers doing with their levy fund?
Employers with a previously established apprenticeship programme have used the levy are taking on increased numbers of apprentices. Other employers have used the levy to introduce an apprenticeship programme, which they may not have considered before in areas like sales, accountancy, and HR/recruitment.
Since the levy introduction, changes have also been seen in the level of programmes on offer. An increase in apprenticeship starts at level 4 and above has been driven by the availability of standards at these levels and by employers’ increasing focus on using apprenticeships to upskill their existing workforce, who tend to be qualified at level 3 or above.
Helping others with the funds, they do not use themselves.
Levy paying employers that still had levy funds after funding their own in-house apprenticeship programmes are now looking for ways to utilise this remaining fund before it expires and is returned to the Government. As a result, they are supporting other sectors and their communities by transferring a portion of the unspent levy fund to provide free apprenticeship training.
The apprenticeship levy scheme has directly supported 375,000 people since it was launched in 2017, but that number could be so much higher if all employers utilised their whole fund. We here are Paragon Skills work with Employers to achieve this goal as part of our Transfer to train campaign – you can find out more on this and how you can get involved here – link to the page.
Filling skills-gaps and futureproofing
Apprenticeships are becoming increasingly common in all industries, with employers better understand the benefit of training apprentices in line with their company standards. They are also gaining a reliable way to futureproof against skills gaps years into the future.
It never too late to join the thousands of business in the UK that are already taking full advantage of their levy fund. Contact us today on 0800 783 2545; if you are not looking to use your levy fund, email firstname.lastname@example.org to talk to our team about how best to use this funding for your business or even pledge it to support other smaller employers today.