Smaller businesses debating whether to take on an apprentice now have even more reason to do so.
From last month (April) the contribution towards apprenticeship training for non-levy paying companies - those with a wage bill of less than £3m per year - was halved.
Previously, the Government paid 90% of the contribution and employers made a 10% contribution, up to the funding band maximum.
But now the Government contribution has gone up to 95%, meaning non-levy paying organisations only pay a 5% contribution to fund their apprenticeship programme.
And don't forget non-levy paying employers are eligible to take up other incentives.
Additional funding and support, depending on your apprentice’s age and circumstances or if you're business employs fewer than 50 employees, is available.
There are also still grants of £1,000 on offer to support the employment and training of 16 to 18 year olds or apprentices with an EHC plan.
And businesses are exempt from paying the employer National Insurance contribution for apprentices aged 25 and under.
As I've highlighted before, there's plenty of evidence to show the positive benefits apprenticeships are bringing to workplaces across the country.
An impressive 96% of employers with apprentices say they have experienced at least one benefit of taking on apprentices, and most can count at least eight benefits.
Employers report improved productivity (78%) and product or service quality (74%) as well as the new ideas apprentices bring to their organisation (65%), while 83% would recommend apprentices to other businesses.
And let's not forget what the apprentices gain. According to a recent survey early three-quarters (71%) agreed their chances of earning a higher wage in future had increased and 80% agreed their chances of going on to higher levels of training had also increased. Of those who completed an apprenticeship, 90% secured a job or went on to further learning, with 88% in sustained employment.
Apprenticeships are available to anyone aged over 16, graduates and non-graduates, new or existing staff.
The Government introduced the apprenticeship levy two years ago to create long term, sustainable funding for apprenticeships and to give employers more control to provide their staff with a range of training opportunities.
The apprenticeship levy was part of wholesale apprenticeship reforms designed to allow employers to widen their apprenticeship provision to include not only school leavers but existing staff, offering more opportunities for up-skilling and development.
While the take up of apprenticeships by employers in the first 12 months was slower than expected, recent figures released show a marked increase in funds now being drawn down by employers.
At Riverside Training we offer a host of apprenticeships from childcare and teaching to digital marketing, business management, customer service and accountancy.
- To start your apprenticeship journey visit our website or by calling us on 01775 710945.