In this month’s budget Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, announced a £126m boost for traineeships in England. The new scheme includes a “flexi-job” apprenticeship. Apprentices will be able to work with a number of different employers in one sector to gain valuable experience and qualifications.

The Chancellor has pledged to help get people back into work through traineeships. He said this is “vital” support given that unemployment is at its highest level in almost five years. Unfortunately, younger and typically lower-paid workers are bearing the brunt of job losses.

This traineeship scheme is intended to get people into their first job after education. They last from six weeks to six months and they are open to people aged between 16 and 24. They form an important first stepping stone that can then lead onto apprenticeships. The awareness of traineeships is very low amongst businesses. “Besides providing additional funding for placements, the government will have to do much more to market them to employers to boost uptake,” suggests Lizzie Crowley, skills adviser for the CIPD.

The Chancellor is also increasing the cash incentive to businesses who take on an apprentice, irrespective of age. Currently in England firms are given £2,000 for every new apprentice they take on under the age of 25 and £1,500 for apprentices over that age. Now the incentive is £3,000 per apprentice regardless of the apprentice’s age.

The Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), which had previously called for flexi-job apprenticeships, see the increase in incentives for employers helping to improve apprenticeship starts. “It is important to take wider action to support jobs, including on employers national insurance and reintroducing the jobs retention bonus,” said the FSB’s national chairman Mike Cherry.

If you would like more information on how apprenticeships and traineeships benefit your business then contact the Employer Brokerage Team by Be-More.