Apprenticeships are a great way to help young people progress from Kickstart work placements.
Many of the young people who have taken part in the scheme are now coming to the end of their placements and could benefit from some additional experience, structured training and a recognised qualification. Apprenticeships are the perfect next stepping stone to provide all of these.
An apprenticeship is a training programme that develops an employee’s knowledge, skills and behaviours in order to perform in their job role. They are used to train both new and existing members of staff, allowing individuals to gain a qualification at the same time as gaining work experience and earning a wage. The training is designed to be flexible in order to meet the needs of the individual and their employer.
If you’ve got a young person coming to the end of their work placement, consider offering them an apprenticeship within your organisation. You will still be able to benefit from the government apprenticeship incentives which are £4k for hiring a 16-18 year old and £3k for hiring an apprentice aged 19+. It was recently announced that the deadline for applying for these incentives and getting your apprentice started would be extended until the end of January 2022. Get in touch to find out more about progressing from a Kickstart to an apprenticeship, and how you can take advantage of the incentives on offer.
If you’re not able to offer an apprenticeship within your own organisation, encourage the young people you’ve had on work placement to talk to training providers like Damar. After all, the aim of the scheme was to help make young people more employable, including supporting them to look for long-term work. We have lots of apprenticeship roles across England which would make ideal roles for these individuals. You can view our current vacancies or aspiring apprentices can learn more and register with us on our overview page.
The Kickstart Scheme
If you would like to offer a Kickstart work placement to a young person, you still have time. The government has extended the application deadline to December 17th, with the placement itself able to start up until the end of March 2022.
The Kickstart scheme involves offering young people a 6 month work placement for a minimum of 25 hours per week and is available for 16-24 year olds on universal credit.
The government funds 100% of the national minimum wage (or the national living wage depending on the age of the participant) for 25 hours per week as well as any associated employer national insurance contributions and minimum automatic enrolment pension contributions. They also provide a grant of £1,500 per work placement to cover setup costs and employability support.
There are many benefits to offering Kickstart work placements – supporting young people in the local community to gain experience, bringing new ideas into your team, giving supervisory experience to your existing staff and testing whether the young person would be a good fit for a longer term apprenticeship or job within your organisation.
The scheme, which was launched in September 2020 as part of the government’s Plan for Jobs, has enabled 76,970 starts (as at September 22nd 2021). The types of job roles with the highest number of starts have been administration (19,350) and retail/sales (12,580).
You can apply for a new Kickstart grant or add more jobs to an existing grant agreement through the government’s online portal. Once approved, DWP will upload the role to their Find a Job website and work coaches at JobCentre Plus will refer relevant young people to the role. You are able to interview any applicants before choosing your selected candidate.