A key feature of the government’s Reform of Apprenticeships programme in England, was the involvement of employers in developing and running of the new system. The new hair and barbering standards are designed by employers, overseen by employers and through the Apprenticeship Levy, they are paid for by employers – but by large firms only, those with annual wages of £3 million plus.
Unlike employers in large firms, smaller employers often do not pay anything for apprenticeship training. In fact, there are incentives available for taking on 16-18-year-olds, SMEs are given a grant of £1,000 for each apprentice they employ.
The only exception is when an employer takes on an apprentice who is aged 19 or older at the start of their programme. Up until April 2019, the co-investment rate was 10% of the cost of the apprenticeship, however, from 1st April, the co-investment rate halves to 5%.
In cash terms, the employer must now co-invest £350 plus VAT for each 19+ apprentice who starts a new Standards Level 2 Apprenticeship, previous this was £700 plus VAT. For Level 3 advanced apprentices, this is now just £150 plus VAT.