Employer Training Services » 01234 291747

Apprenticeship Grant for Employers

The Apprenticeship Grant for Employers of 16- to 24- year-olds (AGE 16 to 24) supports businesses that would not otherwise be in a position to do so, to recruit individuals aged 16 to 24 into employment through the apprenticeship programme.

The Grant has already helped thousands of employers to grow their business by employing an apprentice. Could it help you too?

The Grant will be on offer to employers with less than 50 employees and you will be able to receive up to 5 grants in total, subject to eligibility and availability.

Which employers are eligible?

To be eligible you must must:

  • confirm that you are not able to recruit an apprentice without the Grant.
  • have fewer than 50 employees in the United Kingdom, as recorded by the Employer Data Service (EDS).
  • not have had an employee start an Apprenticeship in the 12-month period before the start date of the first apprentice for whom you apply for the Grant.* If you are eligible, you can claim up to 5 grants during the time the Grant is on offer.
  • Please note you do not have to wait 12 months between the first and any subsequent applications. Only one Grant will be paid per employer for any particular individual.
  • commit to employ your apprentice(s) for a minimum of 12 months on the Apprenticeship programme or the time it takes them to complete their Apprenticeship, whichever is the greater
  • confirm you are aware of and do not breach any State Aid rules by receiving the Grant and
  • agree to pay the apprentice in line with legal minimum requirements or more.

* We take Apprenticeship start dates from the Individual Learning Records submitted by training organisations to the Skills Funding Agency. We take into account starts by: existing employees and apprentices transferring from another employer; regardless of the apprentice’s age and level of the Apprenticeship; or whether the Grant was claimed for them. We do not take account of ‘progression starts,’ that is learners progressing from one level of Apprenticeship to another with the same employer.

You should contact any training organisations you have been working with recently to check whether they have accessed Apprenticeship programme funding for learning they have provided to you. We would strongly urge you to do this if any of your employees have undertaken work-based learning such as NVQs (National Vocational Qualifications) or Diplomas.

Which apprentices qualify?

Our aim is to support employers to create new jobs and recruit new 16- to 24-year-olds. Eligible employers who want to access the Grant should note that apprentices must be:

  • new recruits
  • aged 16 to 24, on the start date recorded on the Individual Learning Record submitted by your training organisation to the Skills Funding Agency
  • enrolled on an Apprenticeship programme recognised by the Skills Funding Agency
  • live in England and
  • not taking part in full-time education.

Existing employees do not attract the Grant; except where AGE 16 to 24 provides an incentive for you to provide an existing part-time employee aged 16 to 24 (contracted to work fewer than 20 hours each week) with a new full-time Apprenticeship job role (minimum 30 hours per week).

How do employers apply?

You must complete and sign an AGE 16 to 24 Employer Agreement with your chosen training organisation(s), to confirm your eligibility, before your apprentice(s) starts. You must provide an indication of how many apprentices you plan to recruit, with the support of the Grant with that particular training organisation; this can be updated.

Only Skills Funding Agency approved training organisations can submit applications for the Grant to us. We will not accept any responsibility for applications that are not submitted, submitted late or incorrectly submitted; or for incorrect information or advice given by training organisations.

AGE 16 to 24 will be issued on a first-come, first-served basis within a training organisations allocation of Grants.

When does an employer become eligible for payment?

Eligible employers qualify to receive payment of AGE 16 to 24, value £1,500, once a qualifying apprentice has completed 13 weeks ‘in-learning’ on their Apprenticeship programme; as defined by the Skills Funding Agency’s programme funding rules http://skillsfundingagency.bis.gov.uk and recorded on the Individual Learning Record submitted by your training organisation; that is, not just 13 weeks in employment.

The Skills Funding Agency will transfer AGE 16 to 24 funds to your training organisation. It may take up to nine weeks after the 13-week qualification point for the funds to be processed and transferred. They must make arrangements to pay the funds to you within 30 days of receipt.

Payment is in the form of a grant and is therefore exempt from VAT.

If your apprentice leaves or is dismissed before completing 13 weeks ‘in-learning’ as defined above you will not receive payment for the Grant, even if they completed 13 weeks in employment.

If your apprentice leaves or is dismissed after completing 13-weeks ‘in-learning,’ your entitlement to the Grant remains. As defined in the AGE 16 to 24 Employer Agreement, you are expected to provide ongoing employment to your apprentice(s), subject to satisfactory performance as an employee.

Our partners

The Creative & Cultural Sector Skills Council, Norfolk County Council and Suffolk County Council have been funded by the National Apprenticeship Service to pay AGE 16 to 24 in their areas/sector. Employers in these areas/sector may be able to benefit from an enhanced payment funded by them. Please refer to their guidance for further information:

Creative & Cultural Sector Skills Council: www.ccskills.org.uk
Norfolk County Council: apprenticeships@norfolk.gov.uk
Suffolk County Council: apprenticeships@suffolk.gov.uk

Where the Grant is paid by one of the above it cannot also be claimed through a training organisation for the same learner or vice versa.

Can I claim AGE 16 to 24 and incentives offered by other organisations in connection with Apprenticeships?

You need to refer to their guidance to find out if you meet the eligibility criteria.