Apprenticeships - advice for employers

What’s an apprenticeship?

An apprenticeship is a proper job combined with structured skills development and ongoing assessment. An apprentice is employed and paid whilst they learn, and the apprenticeship provides the professional skills, knowledge and the experience to do a specific job.

Apprentices acquire their skills through a mix of workplace learning, formal classroom learning, and practising tasks in the work environment. Apprenticeships are a tested way of re-training or up-skilling existing staff, and attracting new staff with new ideas

How do they work?

Apprentices are employed but spend at least 20% of their paid time on off-the-job training which is usually delivered by an external Apprenticeships training provider. The employer chooses the provider from an approved list, and works with them to decide how the training is delivered. This might be in the workplace or on regular day release, through workshops, or shadowing.

Apprentices are supported by a mentor at work and training must be directly relevant to the Apprenticeship. Ongoing assessment of the apprentice ensures they are meeting required standards for the qualifications they are working towards. Once an apprentice completes their Apprenticeship they must demonstrate they can perform relevant tasks to industry standards.

The benefits of Apprenticeships to employers include:

  • Reducing training costs: up to 100% funding could be available to support Apprenticeship programmes in your business
  • Reduced recruitment costs: Apprenticeship providers can often help you find suitable interview candidates and if you employ an apprentice below the age of 25, you are not required to pay employer National Insurance contributions for them
  • Building skills: 86% of employers said that apprentices helped to develop relevant skills for the organisation, and to fill the skills gap
  • Increasing productivity: 78% of employers say that apprentices improved productivity
  • Reduced staff turnover: Apprenticeships encourage staff satisfaction and loyalty. 73% of employers say that staff morale is improved by having apprentices
  • 25% of consumers are willing to pay more for products from a business that employs apprentices

Where can I find out more?

You can search for an apprenticeship course that suits your business needs and search for local and national training providers who can help you recruit an apprentice by using the Find Apprenticeship Training Service

There's more information on how to recruit an apprentice on the hire an apprentice website or call the National Apprenticeship Service on 08000 150 600.

You can also download the employer guide to apprenticeships from the National Apprenticeships service.

We have over 100 apprentices in the council. Watch this short video to see more employers in Brighton & Hove who have benefitted from hiring apprentices into their business.