The 5th to the 9th of March will mark the 11th National Apprenticeship week (Look out for us in the First for Business Apprenticeship special!), but what does the current climate look like for apprenticeships, and does there need to be a change?
The United Kingdom is facing a crisis. Brexit is looming, meaning we are going to have to look more internally to fill vacant positions. However, there is a widely documented skills shortage in the UK with the levels of skills shortage at a 30-year high (CBI, 2018). Couple this with falling behind other big EU nations in levels of productivity and you have a recipe for poor growth in productivity, leading to a slow growth in the economy.
One way in which the Government tried to address this issue was to introduce an apprenticeship levy. This meant that businesses with a wage bill over £3million had to pay money into a fund for apprenticeship training. However, this has largely failed. It has been reported that take up of apprenticeships has dropped by 60% since the introduction and this appears to be largely down to confusion, employers just do not know how best to use the money, and studies have shown many employers do not know what the levy is.
However, employers should not fear this levy, but use it as a way of upskilling their existing staff. Apprentices don’t have to be inexperienced 16-18 year olds fresh from school, although these blank canvases can be great. Have a managerial position available? Why not use a leadership and management apprenticeship to upskill an existing team member? Too often employers do not look at what is directly in front of them and improve what they already have.
Contact us at Whyy Change and see how our range of apprenticeships can upskill your workforce.
We will help you use the levy, NOT LOSE IT.