Grow your own talent with a motivated, skilled and qualified workforce

This week is National Apprenticeship Week, an initiative aimed at celebrating apprenticeships and the positive impact they have on individuals, businesses and the wider economy. In Peterborough, the number of apprenticeships continues to grow and the government has pledged to create 3 million apprenticeships by 2020, giving businesses more control over how they are run and what they offer.

Let’s start with the basics… What is an Apprenticeship?

An apprenticeship is a way for young people and adult learners to earn while they learn in a real job, gaining a real qualification and a real future. They are work-based training programmes for both new and existing employees, designed around the needs of employers and leading to nationally recognised qualifications.

What different levels and job roles are available?

Apprenticeships are linked to 1500 job roles across more than 170 industries. There are 3 levels of apprenticeship available:

  • Intermediate (Level 2) – equivalent to five A*-C GCSEs
  • Advanced (Level 3) – equivalent to tow A Levels
  • Higher (Level 4 and above) – equivalent to a HND, NHC, Foundation degree or degree

Did you know?

  • The government invested £1,559,771 in apprenticeships during the 2014/15 academic year
  • More than 1300 employers are involved in designing the new apprenticeships standards through the Trailblazer programme
  • Up to 28,000 quality apprenticeship vacancies are available online at any one time

What are the benefits to employers?

National statistics from employers show that qualified apprentices are 15% more employable than those with other qualifications, and a whopping 89% of employers claim that apprenticeships have helped their business improve the quality of their product or service.

Our experience locally suggests that apprenticeships are enabling businesses to grow their skills base by nurturing young, local talent.

What is the new apprenticeship levy that was announced as part of the Autumn statement?

The Chancellor announced a number of apprenticeship reforms that are aimed at ensuring the sustainability of quality apprenticeships. The precise detail is still in consultation, but we do know that there will be a new apprenticeship levy of 0.5% on company payrolls to raise £3bn a year to help fund the targeted three million apprenticeships.

Will the levy affect your business? Here’s the lowdown…

  • Who will pay? The levy will only apply to employers with a payroll bill of over £3m.
  • What will it pay for? The levy will support post-16 apprenticeships.
  • How much can an employer get out? In England, any business will be able to get back more than it puts in by training sufficient numbers of apprentices.
  • How will the funding be accessed by employers? The funding will be accessed by a digital voucher scheme.
  • How will it be implemented? There will be a formal discussion with businesses on the implementation of the levy.
  • When does it start? The levy will come into effect in April 2017.

More information is expected to be released shortly about how the levy will work and how to access the funding, however you can call the National Apprenticeship Service on 08000 150 600 for free, impartial advice and support. Alternatively, The Skills Service team can signpost you to information and support locally. Call 01733 863696 or email