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Blog: Apprentices can answer skills issues for SMEs
September 12, 2019

There has arguably never been a better time for SMEs to hire apprentices.

For small businesses, changes to the apprenticeship levy give bosses the chance to both have their cake and eat it.

The benefits of hiring apprentices are multiple. Not only are apprentices young, hungry and enthusiastic additions to your team, but an early investment in their careers tends to mean improved productivity, greater loyalty and staff retention.

While large companies were originally best placed to benefit from the apprenticeship levy, SMEs can now profit from a system which allows you to grow your staff members at a fraction of the price of regular training.

Recent changes by the government mean that for SMEs, apprenticeships now offer a big opportunity at a small price.

The level of investment that small and medium enterprises will have to contribute to apprenticeship training has recently dropped to five per cent, with the government paying the remaining cost.

In some instances, this could mean companies benefitting from over £10,000 worth of apprenticeship training at a cost of only around £500.

Even more good news for business owners is that employers with fewer than 50 members of staff can get 100 per cent of the training paid for by the government and a £1,000 incentive provided if the apprentice:

  • is between 16-18 years old
  • is between 19-24 years old and has previously been in care or who has an Education, Health and Care plan provided by their local authority.

With these incentives to small businesses, the only additional cost is the salary of a new employee.

Typically, the scheme also offers a great return on investment, with 90 per cent of apprentices, like Matthew, staying on in their place of work after completing their training and 78 per cent of employers saying that apprentices improved productivity in their business.

PHX Training offers tailored support to meet the specific needs of SMEs in various levels of apprenticeships available to those aged 16 or over and we believe in flexibility for large and smaller employers to deliver the apprenticeships of relevance to them.

Apprenticeship funding can be spent on employees at all ages which means companies can bring in new starters whilst developing existing staff, with the opportunity to upskill staff at all levels.

For more information about how the Levy and apprenticeship funding works visit the apprenticeship website or contact PHX Training on 01228 210317 today.

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