Ben HaywardSeptember 2nd

The government is offering employers cash incentives to take on new apprentices to help get more people into work, it has been announced. 

Apprenticeships and Skills Minister, Gillian Keegan revealed the new scheme on September 1st as part of the government’s ‘Plan for Jobs’ which is being developed in attempts to mitigate the effects of the coronavirus lockdown on both workers and the UK economy. 

Employers are being offered £2,000 for each new apprentice they hire aged under 25, and £1,500 for each newly recruited apprentice aged 25 and over - including people who have been made redundant.

The payment is designed to help employers cover the cost of recruiting an apprentice, going towards providing facilities and uniforms or helping with travel costs and salaries.

Ms Keegan said: “We recognise the huge impact coronavirus has had on individuals and businesses up and down the country.

“Through our Plan for Jobs we have taken unprecedented steps to protect, support and create jobs, including driving more high quality apprenticeship opportunities to help get our economy moving.

“To support this, from today, employers can sign up to receive £2,000 for each new apprentice they take on aged under 25 and £1,500 for those aged 25 and over.

“This offer will help more employers large and small to invest in the skilled workforce they need to help them recover and grow.

“I strongly encourage as many employers as possible to apply now, and take advantage of this generous offer whether it is used to recruit apprentices for the first time or expand their current apprenticeship offer.”

Employers who want to take advantage of the offer can apply through the government’s digital apprenticeship service.

The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak added: “Apprenticeships play a crucial role in developing the skills people need, particularly young people, as they seek work in these challenging times.

“I urge every employer, big or small, national or local, to sign up to our offer and support apprentices as we continue our economic recovery.”

This new scheme comes on top of the existing £1,000 payment for new 16-18 year-old apprentices, and those aged under 25 with an Education, Health and Care Plan, and alongside other government plans to bolster the jobs market - especially for young people who are expected to be worst hit by an economic downturn. 

These include a £111 million boost to triple the number of traineeships available across England,  a £2 billion Kick-start Scheme to create hundreds of thousands of new jobs for young people, the Job Retention Bonus – a one-off payment of £1,000 to UK employers for every furloughed employee who remains continuously employed through to the end of January 2021 and a £111 million fund to support school and college leavers to do a fully funded optional extra year of study.

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