IMI urges businesses to ‘take advantage’

Businesses across England are being urged to take advantage of the new Apprenticeship Levy being introduced next month with the government topping up 10% of monthly payments made by Levy paying employers.

Research shows a third of UK businesses are confused or unaware of the financial implications of the new Apprenticeship Levy, however the Institute of the Motor Industry (IMI) is urging employers to see the vast benefits of investing in Apprenticeships.

The new Levy being introduced on 6 April is set at a rate of 0.5% of an employer’s annual payroll, but only employers with an annual payroll over £3 million will have to make the contribution.

The changes to Apprenticeship funding means non-levy paying businesses across England will now have to pay 10% of the costs of their apprentice training and assessment, with the government covering the remaining 90%. Plus businesses with under 50 staff, employing 16-18 year old Apprentices will be fully government funded.

Mark Armitage, senior apprenticeship manager at the IMI, said, ‘The new Apprenticeship Levy will provide an economic boost to England’s Apprentice system, provide young people with their first step on a career ladder, and increase the skills base across the sector.

‘With employers at the heart of the Apprenticeship reforms it’s important they understand the benefits Apprenticeships can offer, and how important the new Apprenticeship standards are in delivering good quality and highly skilled people.’

The Levy can only be used to pay for the training and assessment of new apprenticeship starts in England from 1 May 2017, whether on Apprenticeship Frameworks or the new Apprenticeship Standards.

The Department for Education has published a levy guide for employers and an online calculator to help understand how they could use their digital funds to pay for training in future.