Publication - Advice and guidance

European Structural and Investment Funds: graduate placement scheme manager guidance

An overview of the evidence requirements in relation to Graduate Placement Schemes.

Published:
30 Jun 2021
European Structural and Investment Funds: graduate placement scheme manager guidance

Contents

1.Overview

1.1 General

1.2 Terminology

2. Graduate placements – costs

2.1 Graduate Placement Grants – Stage 1

2.2. Graduate placements – Stage 2

3. File checks 

1. Overview

1.1 General

This purpose of this document is to provide an overview of the evidence requirements in relation to Graduate Placement Schemes.

1.2 Terminology

In this document:

The Graduate Placement Scheme Manager (GPSM) is the Lead Partner placing the graduates.

The Graduate Placement Beneficiary Organisation (GPBO) is the organisation with which the Graduate is placed.

The Graduate is the individual graduate who is the subject of the placement

2. Graduate placements – costs

Graduate placements are eligible costs under ERDF Priority 3 so long as they can demonstrate SME growth. These costs can only be claimed after the placement has been completed for example, if a placement is for 6 months, then this cost can only be claimed after the Graduate has completed the 6 months. This is to ensure the placement cost can be included as a full output. The same logic would be applied to any placement duration. The only exception to this would be where the Graduate Placement Scheme Manager has agreed interim milestones (with appropriate evidence of achievement) with the Managing Authority in advance of the placement.

2.1 Graduate Placement Grants – Stage 1

A sample of Graduate Placements will be provided to the Graduate Placement Scheme Manager through the Claim Verification Check. As the GPSM, you will need to provide evidence of how the Graduate Placement Beneficiary Organisation applied for the graduate placement and defrayed costs prior to claiming from the GFM, and how the GPBO claimed for the graduate placement (you must ensure the GPBO has defrayed the expenditure before claiming it back through your EU funded operation). You must be able to provide the Managing Authority with the following information and documentation:

  • the name of the Graduate Placement Beneficiary Organisation (GPBO)
  • confirmation of the GPBO’s business type
  • confirmatory evidence of the GPBO’s SME status, (if the Graduate Placement is awarded to an SME as per your approved Operation Application). This applies whether the SME is a limited company, sole trader or other unincorporated business.
  • signed and dated application from the GPBO requesting a graduate placement. The application must be within the approved start and end dates of your approved Operation Application;
  • signed and dated Graduate Placement award letter, contract or agreement from the Graduate Placement Scheme Manager (GPSM). The award letter must contain:
    • state Aid Notification for De Minimis and GBER (see section 1.2.2 and 1.2.3 of Grant Fund Manager Guidance for further details)
    • ERDF acknowledgement
    • terms and conditions of the Graduate Placement
    • duration of the Graduate Placement
  • signed and dated acceptance from the GPBO;
  • evidence of ERDF acknowledgement at both the GPSM and GPBO level; (1)
  • the name of the Graduate;
  • qualification certificate;
  • job description;
  • contract of employment for the Graduate;
  • claim form(s) used by the GPBO to draw down graduate placement grant payments; (2)
  • GPSM Bacs Totals; (if applicable)
  • GPSM Bank Statement showing defrayment of grant to the recipient, including date of defrayment (3)
  • evidence for any staff working 100% on graduate placement scheme (4)

(1) See Section 1.4 of the Grant Fund Manager Guidance for further details on Publicity Guidance

(2) Where an amendment or apportionment has been made to a Claim Form, this must be clearly detailed, showing calculations where appropriate

(3) If the amount on the bank statement is more than the grant amount to be verified i.e. relates to more than one payment, then BACS/Ledger run(s) that show the grant amount to be verified and the total that appears on the bank statement must be provided. (MA only need see those items that refer to the grant, all other entries on the bank statement can be blacked out)

(4) There should be a clear audit trail for staff costs through payroll records, via BACS to the bank statement. Where staff are 100% on Structural Fund Activity, job descriptions and contract or letter which details that staff are solely involved in Structural Funds activity. Where staff salaries claimed are for part-time staff, timesheets must be submitted. Timesheets are found on our website and further information is contained within the National Rules

 2.2 Graduate placements – Stage 2

A sub-sample of the Graduate Placements from Stage 2 will be provided to the Graduate Placement Scheme Manager through the Claim Verification Check. You must be able to provide the Managing Authority with the following information/documentation:

  • payslips of the Graduate for the duration of their placement; (1)
  • evidence for employer’s costs (e.g. employer’s National Insurance costs) which the GPBO has included in the claim (2)
  • GPBO BACS Total; (if applicable)
  • GPBO bank statements showing defrayment/defrayment date of these salaries; (3)

(1) There should be a clear audit trail for staff costs through payroll records, via BACS to the bank statement

(2) Details of eligible employer’s costs may be found in the National Rules

(3) If the amount on the bank statement is more than the amount to be verified i.e. relates to more than one payment, then BACS/Ledger run(s) that show the amount to be verified and the total that appears on the bank statement must be provided. (MA only need see those items that refer to the amount to be verified, all other entries on the bank statement can be blacked out).

3. File checks

The Graduate Placement Scheme Manager is responsible for the eligibility of Graduate Placement Scheme awards and related audit trails and record-keeping, not the Graduate Placement Scheme Beneficiary Organisation. File Verifications will take place at the level of the Graduate Placement Scheme Manager (Verification – Stage 1) and the Graduate Placement Beneficiary Organisation (Verification – Stage 2).

A sample of Graduate Placements will be provided to the Graduate Placement Scheme Manager through the Claim Verification Check. The file check will include the GPSM check and the GPBO Check. Please see:

  • 2.1 Graduate Placements – Stage 1 for the GPSM Check Verification documentation and process
  • 2.2. Graduate Placements – Stage 2 for the GPBO Check Verification documentation and process
First published: 30 Jun 2021 Last updated: 30 Jun 2021 -