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Trainee, Apprentice or Kickstarter…… who do I hire???


Trainee, Apprentice or Kickstarter…… who do I hire???

Yesterday the Chancellor of the Exchequer announced a series of measures to bring back our economy. With youth unemployment set to reach record highs, the government's "plan for jobs" will help to tackle this.  With several different incentives available to employers to now take on a new hire, it might cause some bewilderment -  what is the best option?Trainee, apprentice or kickstarter?   Hopefully the following helps to cut through any confusion and make it easy for an employer to decide upon the best option and then how to take on a new employee and play their part in rebuilding our economy.

 1. Hire an Apprentice

From August 2020 to January 2021, any firm that hires a new young apprentice aged 16 to 24 will receive £2,000, while those that hire new apprentices aged 25 and over will be paid £1,500. These payments will be in addition to the existing £1,000 incentive the government already provides for new 16 to 18 year-old apprentices, and those aged under 25 with an education, health and care plan where that applies. It means that employers could receive up to £3,000 for hiring 16 to 18 year old apprentices during the six month incentive scheme.

  • Minimum Commitment: It depends on the type of apprenticeship but from about 13 months (minimum 12 months practical training period + time for end-point assessment which can take about 1 to 3 months to complete).
  • Minimum Salary: The current minimum wage rate for an apprentice is £4.15 per hour. This rate applies to apprentices under 19 and those aged 19 or over who are in their first year. You must be paid at least the minimum wage rate for your age if you're an apprentice aged 19 or over and have completed your first year.
  • Recruitment: Very often a training provider will do all the initial recruitment for you, presenting you with a shortlist for final interview.  Employers can also recruit of course.
  • Candidate Eligibility: 16+ years old.
  • Other Useful Information:  An apprentice is an employee much like any other employee and must be treated in similar way. They will require some time off during working hours to complete their 20% off-the-job training but your training provider will work with you to plan this out over the duration of the apprenticeship. An apprentice will of course need a line manager that will help to mentor and develop them.
  • Interesting Fact: Yesterday, Rishi Sunak stated that 91 per cent of apprentices stay in work or do further training afterwards.
  • Employing an Apprentice: More details here: https://www.gov.uk/take-on-an-apprentice.  Or simply email LMP Education – info@lmpeducation.org and receive a call or email within 24 hours.
  • Who Can Help? LMP Education is a national training provider with a proven track record in working with both small and large organisations, recruitment and staff upskill strategies, and in the quality of education (recently graded "Good" by Ofsted across all judgement areas - March 2020). Full apprenticeship course listing here.  LMP Education have been running bi-weekly webinars for the last few months, engaging thousands of work-hungry candidates hoping to start an apprenticeship this September (or sooner!).  Please get in touch to meet your perfect new apprentice and take advantage of the "brand new bonus" for making the hire.  Email info@lmpeducation.org to start the process.


2. Hire a Trainee

A traineeship is a course with work experience that gets a young person ready for work or an apprenticeship. It can last up to 6 months.  The purpose of traineeships is to prepare young people for employment so that they are able to progress successfully to apprenticeships and other sustainable jobs. Work experience in traineeships should give the young person experience of a real workplace so they can develop the skills, knowledge, confidence, attitudes and behaviours they need to succeed at work.

For the first time ever, the government will fund employers who provide trainees with work experience, at a rate of £1,000 per trainee. The government will improve provision and expand eligibility for traineeships to those with Level 3 qualifications and below, to ensure that more young people have access to high quality training.

  • Minimum Commitment: A traineeship is minimum of 6 weeks up to a maximum of 6 months and should reflect the needs of the student.
  • Work Experience: Trainee work placements must last at least 100 hours. If your trainee gets unemployment benefits the placement can’t last longer than 8 weeks. Trainees may complete a maximum of 240 hours of work experience over six months.
  • Minimum Salary: You don’t have to pay trainees or offer expenses but you can if you want to (Reference: https://www.gov.uk/employ-trainees).
  • Recruitment: Very often a training provider will do all the initial recruitment for you, presenting you with a shortlist for final interview.  Employers can also recruit of course.
  • Candidate Eligibility: Young people aged 16 to 24 and up to age 25 for those with an Education, Health and Care plan.
  • Offer a Trainee Work Experience: More details here: https://www.gov.uk/employ-trainees


3. Hire a Kickstarter

The kickstart scheme will fund the direct creation of high quality jobs for young people at the highest risk of long-term unemployment. It will give young people the chance to build their confidence and skills in the workplace, and to gain experience that will improve their chances of going on to find long-term, sustainable work. Funding available for each job will cover 100% of the relevant National Minimum Wage for 25 hours a week, plus the associated employer National Insurance contributions and employer minimum automatic enrolment contributions. The funding will be conditional on the firm proving these jobs are “new”.  The scheme will open for applications in August, with the first jobs expected to start in the autumn.

  • Minimum Commitment: 6 months, 25 hours per week.
  • Minimum Salary:  National minimum wage - https://www.gov.uk/national-minimum-wage-rates
  • Recruitment: This scheme will sit alongside a guaranteed foundation of support through an expanded Youth Offer delivered through DWP, providing a range of targeted support to help young people find lasting work.
  • Candidate Eligibility:  Aged 16 to 24 who are on Universal Credit and are deemed to be at risk of long-term unemployment.
  • Other Useful Information:  You can also top up wages and hours. 
  • Who Can Help:  We are waiting for more details on how you can take on a “kickstarter” but LMP Education has been have been running bi-weekly webinars for the last few months, engaging thousands of work-hungry candidates hoping to start an apprenticeship this September (or sooner!).  LMP Education is now screening candidates that would be better suited (and eligible) for the kickstart scheme.  As an organisation, LMP Education runs employability programmes, helping those not in employment, education and training (NEET) into positive destinations. Email info@lmpeducation.org to start the process and find your perfect kickstarter! 

We hope that helps! As more detail and guidance comes out, we will offer further advice for employers.


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