On 6th April, the new Apprenticeship Levy will be launched. The Department for Education and the Skills Funding Agency (SFA) are now encouraging large employers to ready themselves by signing up online and registering for the apprenticeship service.
The apprenticeship service is an online digital system (similar to online banking) that has been set up to support payers of the apprenticeship levy by making investment in apprenticeships straightforward.
The online service helps employers estimate their spend, allows them to financially manage their apprenticeship programme and plan their training requirements, and provides a conduit to select the appropriate training provider, get information about available apprenticeship qualifications and recruit apprentices through their training providers. The service will therefore help employers invest in apprenticeships while:
focussing on their business priorities
addressing skills shortages head on
investing in the skills and training to help their organisations succeed
Apprenticeships and Skills Minister, Robert Halfon, strongly believes that funding reforms are essential to ensuring that this country works to build a highly skilled workforce for the future. He has stated that, “nobody understands the skills employers need better than the employers themselves and that is why we are placing them in the driving seat, to ensure they get the talent they need to grow.
Addressing concerns that the new system will require considerable resources in time from employers, Mr Halfon wants to assure employers that efforts have been made to ensure this is not the case. “I have tried the new service myself and am impressed with how easy to use it is. All you need to do is set up an account, so I encourage employers to do it now so they can be ready for the levy coming later in this year.”
Sue Husband, director of the National Apprenticeship Service, confirmed that, “Employers have told us that they want to be in control of their apprenticeship programme and funding. They want to manage it quickly and easily, so we have designed the apprenticeship service to do just that. It’s really quick to set up an account, and employers that have already registered during our testing phase have told us how easy they found it.”
To register, click here (https://manage-apprenticeships.service.gov.uk/) ensuring you have the following to hand:
your Government Gateway login details for PAYE schemes you want to include
the details for each organisation that will be making an agreement with a training provider for apprenticeship training, including Companies House or charity number
Click here for more guidance.