Apprenticeships Reforms

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What are the Government reforms?

The Government has committed to increase the number of apprenticeships delivered in England to three million by 2020. In April 2017 the way apprenticeships are funded in England will change significantly, so why not let Learning & Skills support you through the process?

Employer Reforms Fact Sheet [pdf document]

New standards

The Government has developed employer focus groups that have devised new standards around the specific skills, competencies, behaviours and attitudes required to do the job and these have been detailed in two page standards. These standards include an assessment plan and the apprentices are independently assessed at the end of the course in an end point assessment.

Government website - Apprenticeships Standards [external link]

Funding bands

Each standard will be linked to one of fifteen funding bands, and the employer and training provider will negotiate a price before the apprenticeship starts. This will be paid in instalments to the provider. The price paid will depend on the type of employer they are.

NumberBand Upper Limit
1 £1,500
2 £2,000
3 £2,500
4 £3,000
5 £3,500
6 £4,000
7 £5,000
8 £6,000
9 £9,000
10 £12,000
11 £15,000
12 £18,000
13 £21,000
14 £24,000
15 £27,000

Employer type

There will be two main types of employer:

  1. Levy Paying Employer
  2. Non-Levy Paying Employer

Levy Paying Employer

If an employer has a wage bill of over £3 million they will pay a levy rate of 0.5% of their pay bill, and this will be collected through the PAYE system. The money will go into a digital account that will be managed by the Digital Apprenticeship Service (DAS). The Government will apply a 10% top up to the funds entering the account, so for every £1.00 the employer will get £1.10 in their account. This money can then be used by the employer to pay for the apprenticeship provision they require. If this money runs out they will revert to the “Co Investment” model used for Non-Levy Paying Employers below.

Non-Levy Paying Employer

These employers will pay 10% of the negotiated costs and the Government will pay the other 90%. This is called “Co Investment”. The employer will be expected to pay the 10% contribution to the training provider in order to get the Government funding.

If the employer employs a 16-18 year old and has under 50 employees they will not be required to pay any contribution towards the training – it will be fully funded by the Government.


There are also financial incentives for employing:

  • 16-18 year olds

Government website - How the Levy Will Work [external link]

For more information please contact Learning & Skills on 01325 405601 or email l&