Avatar
Hello
Guest
Log In or Sign Up
Thousands of SMEs Denied Chance to Recruit Apprentices
January 16, 2020
0

The Association of Employment and Learning Providers (AELP) has found training providers are having to turn away smaller businesses seeking to recruit apprentices.

Image result for AELP

A growing shortage of funding from the £2.8 billion apprenticeship levy has been attributed to the shortfall in support for SMEs. The AELP found that, on average, apprenticeship providers are turning down approaches from 40 SMEs each.

The research also revealed that 29% of providers with a government contract to train apprentices for SMEs have reduced recruitment. According to the AELP 39% of these providers have stopped or significantly reduced recruitment. 

AELP chief executive Mark Dawe told HR magazine: “What’s doubly frustrating about the restriction on the number of new apprenticeship opportunities available is that the government has just issued official data showing that nine out of 10 apprentices stay in sustained employment and many of them who progress end up earning very good wages. 

“As Downing Street and the chancellor have issued a mandate to ministers to concentrate spending money on what actually works, what further evidence does the government need to invest more in apprenticeships? 

“The fact that the levy is running short of funding shows how popular apprenticeships are and that the levy should be kept. But it’s totally unacceptable for both small businesses and young people that so many of them can’t start apprenticeships because of failures in how the levy funding system works, and this is why it needs reform.” 

One suggestion for reform is a restoration of the £1.5 billion apprenticeship budget that was available to SMEs before the levy was introduced in April 2017. The AELP has also proposed an increase in the levy. 

Dawe added: “Brexit requires us to meet employers’ skills needs by training more home-grown talent, but many training providers have given up ‘selling’ apprenticeships to SMEs when the lack of funding means that there’s no point in doing so. In the meantime there’s a big government advertising campaign telling employers that support is still available. 

“The prime minister promised in July that he would ‘properly fund’ apprenticeships and the education secretary has said that the programme’s funding would be a matter for the Spending Review. As the clock ticks thousands of young people are hearing about the success stories of their peers who have been on an apprenticeship and they can’t understand why the same opportunities aren’t available for them.”

ESFA Calls for Help to Develop the Apprenticeship Service
June 17, 2019
0

ESFA has opened an Expressions of Interest (EOI) for small and medium sized apprenticeship employers and supporting training providers to help develop the apprenticeship service

The Education and Skills funding Agency (ESFA) has opened an Expressions of Interest (EOI) for small and medium sized employers and supporting training providers that currently have a non-levy contract to help the ESFA in its initial phase, to test the system functionality of the apprenticeship service for employers who do not pay the Levy.

Small and medium sized employers that do not pay the Apprenticeship Levy, as well as their supporting training providers, can now express their interest to help ESFA shape its services so it meets future needs for all employers. To apply to test the service: Read more

SMEs Will Have Full Access to ESFA’s #Apprenticeship Service

Every apprenticeship employer in England will soon have access to the full benefits of the Education and Skills Funding Agency’s (ESFA)  apprenticeship service. With the first employers and providers commencing their use from Summer 2019

Currently, only apprenticeship levy-paying employers – those with an annual total pay bill of over £3m – or those in receipt of a transfer of apprenticeship funds – are able to use the full benefits that the apprenticeship service brings.

Whilst all other employers (those who do not pay the levy) have had access to some of the functions, such as find an apprenticeship, the ESFA is opening up the apprenticeship service to employers of all size, regardless of whether they pay the levy or not. This will provide employers with the choice over how they want to control the use of apprenticeships and make them work for their business.

Read more

Apprenticeships Vital to Tackling Future of Work Challenges
December 3, 2018
0

The following article was published in HR Magazine

Over three-quarters (78%) of businesses strongly believe that ‘earn-and-learn training’ can help address future workplace challenges, according to The 5% Club

Employer-members of The 5% Club were asked for their opinion on a number of challenges facing their sector and the role of apprenticeships and other earn-and-learn training.

All businesses surveyed agreed that on-the-job training can help companies prepare for the future by providing relevant skills, with 78% strongly agreeing. A majority (91%) said that earn-and-learn training could significantly help to address ongoing skills gaps.

A further 67% stated that earn-and-learn training, such as apprenticeships, is critical for upskilling an ageing workforce.

Penny Cobham, director general of The 5% Club, said that growth in AI, combined with an ageing population, spelled significant challenges for businesses.

“Over the next few years businesses will face unprecedented change. The increasing use of artificial intelligence data insight and other technological advances will become the expected norm for businesses in order to thrive and as such, we need to prepare our workforces accordingly,” she said. Read more

CMI Calls for Clarity Over £80m SME Apprenticeship Fund
April 9, 2018
0

One year on since the apprenticeship levy was introduced the Chartered Management Institute (CMI) is calling for “much-needed clarification” on proposals to help SMEs access levy cash. 

The chancellor Phillip Hammond announced a fund in his Spring Statement, but nearly a month on no details have been released on how it will work, what the money will be spent on, or how exactly it will increase small businesses engage with the new apprenticeships system.

 

The CMI’s call on government for details follows a recent survey of more than 1,500 managers which found four in five want access to the digital apprenticeships service to be extended to small businesses to boost apprenticeship numbers.

Petra Wilton, director of strategy for the CMI, welcomed the chancellor’s £80m “helping hand” for small businesses but said she was still waiting for vital details.

“Too many businesses are missing out, and will continue to do so until the government fills in the blanks,” she added. “A year on since its launch, there have been many positive signs of how the levy is transforming the way in which employers develop young people starting out in their careers, and upskill existing employees.

Read more