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Information for Employers

Apprenticeships offer you the chance to develop and grow your own workforce, improve your profitability and fill any skills gaps that exist within your business. According to the National Apprenticeship Service over 100,000 employers in over 160,000 workplaces have benefited in this way.

What is an apprenticeship?

Apprenticeships are work-based qualifications which have been designed by the industry for the industry. They are nationally recognised and can be used by employers to train either existing or new staff.

One of the things which make our apprenticeship programmes unique are the extra skills we offer the apprentice. All of our apprenticeship programmes include a legislative short course which is relevant to the industry they work in. This could be abrasive wheels training, tractor driving or one of our other short courses.

How do apprenticeships work?

The majority of the training your apprentices receive will be ‘on the job’ at your premises.  You are responsible for paying your apprentices’ wages (the current National Minimum Wage for an apprentice can be found here, but many employers choose to pay more with the average salary £170 a week).
Employment must be for at least 30 hours per week.

At times agreed between yourself and the apprentice, one of our team of assessors will visit to check on the apprentice’s practical skills and also give tasks to help with their development. There may be a requirement for the apprentice to attend West Kent College from time to time to learn specific elements, but this will be kept to a minimum.

What qualifications will the apprentice get?

They will gain either a Level 2 or a Level 3 NVQ in the specialism you have chosen. Some programmes progress onto a higher level, including degree apprenticeships.

What is the role of the College?

We are your local training specialist responsible for an apprentice’s off-the-job training. We will support both employers and apprentices throughout all aspects of the apprenticeship programme. This includes recruitment, on and off-the-job training, funding, learning support and assessments.

What is the apprenticeship levy?

This applies to all industries and has been designed to encourage employers to use apprenticeship programme, either in the training of new staff or to upskills existing workforces and help reduce the skills gap. The levy applies to all businesses with an annual pay bill over £3m, with these organisations needing to invest 0.5% of their wage bill. Once this has been paid, they will be able to access these funds to pay for apprenticeship training in the form of digital vouchers.