In the midst of all of the Brexit negotiations it may have been quite easy to miss that the Chancellor completed his Spring Statement and with it came a £700million package of reforms including helping smaller businesses access apprenticeships.
From April 2019 employers who do not pay the levy, and those who want to invest more in apprenticeship training than they currently have available in their levy accounts, will be able to benefit from a reduction in the co-investment requirement from 10% to 5% for all new apprenticeship starts.
Employer cash contributions towards the cost of training was an essential part of the apprenticeship reforms, designed to increase quality and employer engagement. By reducing the rate, more smaller businesses will be able to afford to take on an apprentice and benefit from the added value they can bring to organisations.
Employers with fewer than 50 employees who start an apprentice from April will continue to benefit from the small employer co-investment waiver meaning that the government will continue to fund 100% of the cost of training delivered. In addition, any employer that recruits a 16-18 year old apprentice will also continue to receive the £1,000 employer incentive which is paid in two equal instalments at 3 months and 12 months.
For apprentices with Babington this will indicatively mean that an apprentice starting as an Assistant Accountant at Level 3 will see the co-investment reduce £400 and for those starting an Infrastructure Technician at Level 3 will see a reduction to £750 from £1,500.
Co-investment table from April 2019
The additional reforms also saw an increase in the amount of unused levy funds that could be transferred by levy paying employers. From 1st April 2019 organisations can now transfer up to 25% of the total amount of levy declared in the previous tax year. This means employers who have unused apprenticeship funds could work with employers within the supply chain, their industry or regional and local partners to facilitate a transfer of funds to support them in starting apprenticeships.
To discuss your apprenticeship requirements please call 01332 345450.