BPIF welcomes £2k apprenticeship incentive

Jo Francis
Tuesday, August 11, 2020

The BPIF has welcomed new government support measures aimed at keeping apprenticeships going during the Covid-19 crisis, including a fresh incentive of up to £2,000 per person for employers to take on new trainees.

Apprentices: new support is also available for people aged over 25
Apprentices: new support is also available for people aged over 25

Because of the impact of the pandemic on employment – with the ONS reporting yesterday that 730,000 workers had lost their jobs since March – the government has stepped in with new backing for apprenticeships.

There are particular concerns around youth unemployment, but the new support is not just limited to young people.

The incentive includes a £2,000 payment for each new apprentice aged between 16-24 hired between 1 August and 31 January 2021.

Employers hiring apprentices aged 25 or over will receive a payment of £1,500 per apprentice.

Karly Lattimore, managing director of training at the BPIF, commented: “It is really encouraging that the government is advocating apprenticeships as a routeway into sustained employment, and for the first time incentivising employers to recruit apprentices of all ages.

“The measures in place to ensure that the scheme is being used appropriately by businesses are sensible, meaning that apprentices will have the full opportunity to demonstrate their skills, knowledge and behaviours, hopefully leading to full-time roles within the organisation,” she said.

Apprentices that have been made redundant by another company are also eligible under the scheme, the government stated, “as long as they are a new employee to your organisation”.

The payments will be made in two instalments: 50% of the payment 90 days after the apprentice’s start date, with the remainder after the apprentice completes 365 days of their apprenticeship.

Lattimore said she hoped the move could help spur a meaningful increase in print industry training.

“With more and more apprentices being made redundant, this scheme will really support them into new roles faster too! We are seeing a huge increase in enquiries about how to recruit apprentices in the sector so hopefully this incentive will see the future generation of the print industry,” she added.

Other official assistance for apprentices left without a role due to the virus crisis includes the Redundancy Support Service for Apprentices.

As well as advice and guidance, it offers an apprenticeship vacancy sharing service where employers can register their interest in recruiting apprentices who’ve been made redundant.

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