How to take on an apprentice

How to take on an apprentice

How to take on an apprentice

Apprenticeships allow people to combine work with study and gain a specific qualification. With the UK suffering a skills shortage across many sectors in recent years, these types of scheme are increasingly important in providing the trained workforce that modern businesses really need.

The Benefits of Taking on an Apprentice

  • Providing an apprenticeship can help your business boost productivity and make it more competitive in the marketplace by nurturing staff and helping them develop appropriate skills.
  • Creating apprenticeship schemes means that your business is able to fill skills gaps in a more focused way and ensure that staff are trained to the right standard.
  • They are a cost-effective way of providing training in the workplace and often come with financial support from the government.
  • They provide opportunities for individuals who otherwise would not be able to go into full-time education.
  • Apprenticeships can be used to attract new employees as well as develop existing staff.

Taking on an Apprentice

Apprenticeships can be offered to both new and existing employees and candidates can be 16 years of age or older. You need to provide a definitive position within your company, paid at the minimum wage for apprentices (currently £3.90) while also delivering the training that helps them do their job.

The first thing you need to do is set up an apprentice framework or standard and then match this with an education provider. The next step is find out if funding is available and to advertise the position. Once you have selected your apprentice, you sign an agreement with them, including a commitment on your part to deliver the training and education they need.

  • An apprenticeship must last for more than 1 year and can sometimes take up to 5 years depending on the level of training required and the qualification being obtained.
  • Training off the job should constitute at least 20% of the working hours of the apprentice.
  • They should have at least 30 hours work a week and, as with other employees, are covered by Work Time Regulations as well as the Equalities Act.

Apprentice Frameworks and Standards

The good news is there is no need to re-invent the wheel if you want to set up an apprenticeship scheme for your business. The new frameworks and standards have been developed by employer-led groups and are tailored for specific occupations.

You can find a list of different frameworks and standards from the Institute for Apprenticeships & Technical Education.

Finding an Education Provider

The next step is to tie your apprenticeship up with an education provider at the level you require. There are a wide range of online and local education sources that you can choose from. The best place to start is with the government online search tool.

Getting Financial Support

There is funding available for business that want to take on apprentices. If you are not a large organisation with a pay bill in excess of £3 million per annum, you will pay just 5% towards the training and assessing your apprentice and the government will cover the rest.

Finding Your Apprentice

The final stage is to find your apprentice. You may want to recruit from outside your organisation or you might like to give a current employee the opportunity to progress. The choice is yours. Once an apprentice has been selected, your business needs to sign an agreement with them outlining the training and work experience you will supply.

An apprenticeship is beneficial both to the business and the employee that takes it on. Not only does it provide the skills your business needs, it offers opportunities to the individual involved that could help them develop a career for the future.




Leave a Comment

About Our Blog

The BYOB Blog provides content tailored to small business owners and entrepreneurs, plus feature posts on our members and partners. If you would like to see a blog post on a certain topic, please get in touch via email on