Fact Sheet – February 2012
The AGE 16 to 24 is aimed at helping eligible employers to offer young people employment hrough the Apprenticeship programme, by providing wage grants to assist them in recruiting their first apprentice.
The National Apprenticeship Service will provide up to 40,000 Apprenticeship Grants to small medium size employers recruiting 16 to 24 year olds with a value of £1,500, to encourage new employers to take on new 16 to 24 year old apprentices. Priority will be given to small-medium size employers with less than 50 employees.
When will AGE 16 to 24 be available?
The AGE 16 to 24 is available now until March 2013 for employers offer a job opportunity to a young person they recruit. Funding will start from 1 April 2012. However eligible employers who have employed a new apprentice from 1 February 2012 will be able to apply for the grant, subject to all the other eligibility criteria.
The employer is able to receive the grant of £750 at the 8 week stage of the Apprenticeship, with the second £750 when the apprentice has completed 12 months of their Apprenticeship.
Which employers are eligible to receive this new AGE 16 to 24 payment?
Small and medium sized employers who are interested in employing an apprentice for the first time, or who have previously employed an apprentice more than 3 years ago.
Employers will sign an agreement which will include:
- Confirmation of the number of apprentices they will be taking on as a result of this incentive (to a maximum of 3)
- Confirmation that they wouldn’t have taken the apprentice on without this additional incentive
- A commitment to employ the apprentice for at least the time it takes to achieve the Apprenticeship framework. If they fail to do this some or all the grant will be clawed back
- Confirmation that they are aware of and do not breach any state aid rule
- Agreement to pay the minimum Apprenticeship wage of £2.60 per hour – although most apprentices receive more than this
- Confirmation that they have not taken on an apprentice in the previous three years.
Can existing employees starting an Apprenticeship programme within their existing employer attract the incentive?
No – the aim is to support employers to create new and additional jobs for 16 to 24 year olds.
Why is this support only available for 16 to 24 year olds?
We know that 16 to 24 year olds are more likely to be unemployed or economically inactive than older people.
Key Facts and Figures – 16 to 24 year olds in the labour market:
• The unemployment total for 16 to 24 year olds hit a record high of 1.02 million in the quarter, a jobless rate of 21.9%.
• The number of 16 to 24 year olds not in education, employment or training is approaching 26% (Q2 2010).