- 4 Aug 2017
Seven things you need to know about Scottish Apprenticeships
1. The Apprenticeship system in Scotland isn't the same as other parts of the UK.
The UK Government has introduced a new way of funding apprenticeships through the Apprenticeship Levy. Skills, including apprenticeships, are a devolved matter so apprenticeship systems across the UK are different. Scotland has developed an apprenticeship system to drive economic growth and prosperity. In Scotland, the continuation of the well-established and successful Modern Apprenticeship system, along with the expansion of Foundation and Graduate Apprenticeships affords stability and continuity.
If you're an employer in Scotland who already employs Modern Apprentices then funding towards the cost of training will continue to be administered by Skills Development Scotland through contracted training providers and direct employer contracts.
If you don't currently employ Modern Apprentices, this is your opportunity to discover how work-based learning can improve your business performance and productivity. You can also benefit your business through new fully-funded Foundation and Graduate Apprenticeship programmes.
2. Scotland's Apprenticeships system is flexible.
Scotland's Apprenticeship system has been developed with employers, for employers.
Foundation Apprenticeships for pupils mean the work-based learning skills pipeline starts at school. There are more than 80 different types of Modern Apprenticeships – or frameworks – covering hundreds of different job types.
While Graduate Apprenticeships mean businesses can benefit from employees getting qualified up to Master's level through work-based learning.
Now public sector employers also have the same access to Modern Apprenticeship funding as those in the private and third sector.
The number of Modern Apprenticeship frameworks that can be supported for apprentices aged over 25 has been increased.
Eligibility for enhanced contribution rates for disabled people and those with experience of care has also been extended up to the age of 29.
3. Employers influence the design and priorities of the skills, training and employability system in Scotland.
The Scottish Government consulted with employers, industry and stakeholders on the introduction of the UK Apprenticeship Levy. Almost 400 responses were received with the majority from the private sector. The findings were used to directly inform Scottish Government budget priorities.
Led by employers and representatives from industry bodies across a range of sectors, the Scottish Apprenticeship Advisory Board (SAAB) provides employer leadership and contribution to the development of apprenticeships in Scotland; ensuring they are aligned with industry and economic need, Fair Work and job opportunities.
The Board consists of four groups – a Group Board, Employer Engagement Group, Employer Equalities Group and Frameworks and Standards Group.
4. All employers in Scotland can access Apprenticeships.
In Scotland all employers will still be able to access funding for approved apprenticeships. There's no upper limit on the number of apprentices your business can employ.
We recognise that apprenticeships are an essential way for all employers, regardless of size and sector to develop their workforce and contribute to business and economic growth. Larger employers are encouraged to raise awareness across their supply chain.
Skills Development Scotland will continue to actively raise awareness of the benefits of employing apprentices.
5. In Scotland, Levy paying employers can access training and skills programmes.
In Scotland, the system is different than in other parts of the UK. The Scottish Government's response to the UK Government Apprenticeship Levy sets out how the £221m of levy funding over 2017/18 will be used to support skills, training and employment in Scotland.
Employers in Scotland can benefit from publicly funded programmes paid for by the proceeds of the Levy. Examples include a contribution towards training costs for Modern Apprentices and the cost of training Graduate Apprentices; recruitment incentives for people who require additional support and the new Flexible Workforce Development Fund available from autumn 2017.
6. The Scottish Government does not have the powers to introduce an exemption to the UK Apprenticeship Levy for Scotland-based employers.
Implementing training levies is a reserved matter for the UK Government. The Apprenticeship Levy was introduced by the UK Government without consultation with employers or governments in the devolved nations. All eligible employers in the UK are required to pay the levy, which will be collected by the HMRC on behalf of the UK Treasury.
7. The UK Apprenticeship Levy does not provide a new stream of funding to the Scottish Government.
The Apprenticeship Levy is a new tax on employers and its proceeds will largely be replacing existing apprenticeship funding in England of which Scotland will receive a proportionate share through the block grant arrangement with the UK Treasury.
For employers who may be liable to pay the Apprenticeship Levy, HMRC published guidance, 'When you have to pay Apprenticeship Levy and how to report your payments.'
- 75% of employers say Modern Apprentices improved productivity
- 81% of Apprentices said they were more confident
- 89% of businesses plan to continue employing Modern Apprentices
- 74% of individuals had better long term career prospects
- 89% would recommend Modern Apprenticeships to their industry