In January 2020 the ESFA (Education and Skills Funding Agency) announced that small and medium enterprises that do not pay the apprenticeship levy can now access apprenticeship service funding to develop employees.
This means that non-levy paying SME’s have the same benefits as larger organisations to develop their people through funded development programmes.
Using the apprenticeship funding and structure is a productive and effective way for any business to grow talent and develop a motivated, skilled and qualified workforce. Investing time into your people will help them to feel valued and engaged with your business, and help them to contribute to your organisations performance and success.
This money is available to be used! SME’s can get at least 95% of training costs covered for these programmes. Utilising Levy funds which your company may have still been contributing, or those set aside by the government for non-Levy payers means that development of your talent can continue even under limited budget controls.
For example for a Level 3 programme which would £4,500 per person you only have to pay 5% – just £225 per person.
Not only can you get 95% of the costs funded for each person, you can now can now offer more of your employees access to accredited development without a ‘priority or waiting list’.
Implement a greater variety of development programmes across business areas according to your needs, or develop more of your employees during a shorter time, and use staggered and rolling enrolments to support a culture of continuous development in your organisation. Develop your people in cohorts for improved peer-to-peer relationship-building, support and networking during the learning period.
Apprenticeship development programmes are not just for recruiting new, younger people into your business. They provide an excellent framework for development for your current workforce, regardless of age and experience, with excellent opportunities for upskilling talent already in your business and are an effective route to develop careers and retain key people in your organisation.
Giving the time and encouragement to developing your employees shows that you remain optimistic about the future. It also reassures your people of your commitment to their place in your business and that you continue to value their contribution. And it can help create a sense of belonging and purpose for your employees in a time where there is a great deal of uncertainty.
This can be an ideal opportunity for personal development. Studies show that the busier someone is, the more productive they become, so empowering employees to invest some time for their professional development might be exactly what they need right now to keep them moving forward and working hard.
We now offer an even wider range of programmes to develop your people, from leadership and management levels, to support functions and operational levels