with Rishi Sunak announcing financial packages to increase youth employment, is this the time to review your recruitment strategy?
15th July is World Youth Skills Day. The United Nations have dedicated this day, as the date to acknowledge and celebrate the importance of equipping young people with skills for employment, decent work and entrepreneurship. On this day, guided by the United Nations, the world reconsiders their focus in response to the upward trend in the number of youth not in employment, education or training. Illustrative of this upward trend in the report Global Employment Trends for Youth 2020: Technology and the future of jobs, figures showed that in 2016 there were 259 million young people classified as not in employment, education or training – a number that rose to an estimated 267 million in 2019, and is projected to continue climbing to around 273 million in 2021.
At a time where the world is reeling in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, what should employers be considering on World Youth Day 2020? Apprenticeships have always been the obvious solution to youth employment and development, allowing employers to benefit from additional lower cost resource while the apprentice benefits from practical skills development within the workplace and the dual benefit of college driven learning and support. However, in 2020, could we look further and could we do more? The answer to this is possibly we can! With Rishi Sunak announcing a number of new initiatives on 8 July 2020, employers now have more options to consider. The following initiatives have been set out on in the government policy paper “a plan for jobs 2020”:
Kickstart Scheme – The government will introduce a new Kickstart Scheme in Great Britain, a £2 billion fund to create hundreds of thousands of high quality 6-month work placements aimed at those aged 16-24 who are on Universal Credit and are deemed to be at risk of long-term unemployment. Funding available for each job will cover 100% of the relevant National Minimum Wage for 25 hours a week, plus the associated employer National Insurance contributions and employer minimum automatic enrolment contributions.
High quality traineeships for young people – The government will provide an additional £111 million this year for traineeships in England, to fund high quality work placements and training for 16-24 year olds. This funding is enough to triple participation in traineeships. For the first time ever, the government will fund employers who provide trainees with work experience, at a rate of £1,000 per trainee. The government will improve provision and expand eligibility for traineeships to those with Level 3 qualifications and below, to ensure that more young people have access to high quality training.
Payments for employers who hire new apprentices – The government will introduce a new payment of £2,000 to employers in England for each new apprentice they hire aged under 25, and a £1,500 payment for each new apprentice they hire aged 25 and over, from 1st August 2020 to 31st January 2021.
With the additional financial support available for employers to hire and train our youth, why not take the time to review your recruitment strategy and resource options on World Youth Skills Day? Keep an eye on our communications, as we will update you further when the government provide more information on the development of the above schemes. Alternatively, if you are considering hiring apprentices, don’t hesitate to reach out to us for a free consultation at https://lexleyton.co.uk/free-consultation/
if a discussion around ensuring that you have the correct apprenticeship agreement in place would help. There is specific wording that needs to be included in the agreement between the apprentice and the employer; over and above the considerations for a normal contract of employment and this area can be complex.