Apprenticeship Levy – updated guidance

28 October 2016

28 October 2016

Mark Stanley, Programme Delivery Manager recently provided an introduction on Skills Funding Agency (SFA) Blog and provides a high level overview of how the Digital Apprenticeship Service will work to deliver Apprenticeship services and funding in England for employers by:

  • Putting employers in control
  • Offering new apprenticeships
  • Focussing on quality
  • Encouraging diversity and social mobility

The SFA Blog also details the Department of Education (DfE) five step overview of the digital apprenticeship service as it aspires to be by early 2017.

Apprenticeship funding is a devolved subject and the delivery of apprenticeship funding and training is therefore decided by the Government and Assemblies of Scotland, Wales & Northern Ireland.

Apprenticeship Levy – UK wide

In the meantime and following consultation with affected stakeholders, HMRC has confirmed that changes announced recently will:

  • Give employers extra flexibility and the extra time they need to plan for the reforms by extending the expiry date of levy contributions to 24 months (from the 18 months originally proposed)
  • Introduce a system for employers to transfer funds from 2018, working with a new employer steering group to design this system so that it meets their needs
  • Help training providers adapt to the new, simpler funding model, by increasing their funding by an extra 20% where they train 16 to 18 year olds on frameworks. This will come from government and not from employers' digital accounts.  This transitional payment aims to  ensure stability as the market adjusts to reforms
  • Retain a simplified version of the current system of support for those from disadvantaged areas for one year whilst a fuller review is conducted into the best way to support individuals from all backgrounds into apprenticeships

Employers paying the levy will be able to choose a provider from the new Register of Apprenticeship Training Providers. All providers on the register will have to pass quality and financial tests. 

Providers who want to deliver less than £100k of apprenticeship training per year as a subcontractor can choose to apply for the register but it will not be compulsory.