An Alternative to College With Training in the Workplace

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)

What is an Apprenticeship?
An apprenticeship is a nationally recognised training programme combining real work with learning and training, both on and off the job. An apprentice will be employed and can be paid a special training wage, which is slightly under the minimum wage.

Apprenticeships are normally delivered by a training provider. Their delivery can vary and includes; day release, on the job, online training and assessment etc. The type of delivery will depend on the circumstances of the employer and apprentice and is usually agreed by the employer and training provider up front. The delivery and number of units chosen will influence how long it takes to complete an apprenticeship.

Who can Undertake an Apprenticeship?
Anyone from the age of 16 + years of age can undertake an apprenticeship. Employers can use it to up skill new and / or existing staff members.

How Many Hours does an Apprentice Need to be Working?
The person needs to have completed their probation period with you and must be working at least 30 hours per week.

What does an Apprenticeship Consist of?
An apprenticeship isn’t a qualification in its own right, but a collection of different qualifications allows an apprentice to develop well rounded knowledge and skills.

Apprentices complete a Framework of qualifications:
1. Competence Qualification (NVQ Diploma)
2. Functional Skills (Maths and English and maybe ICT)
3. A Relevant Knowledge-Based Qualification (Tech Cert)
4. An Employment Rights and Responsibilities Workbook
5. A Personal Learning and Thinking Skills Module
*If a learner has previous accreditation for any of these elements then they are exempt from completing it again.

What Levels of Apprenticeship are Available?
There are 3 levels of apprenticeships:
Intermediate Apprenticeship (Level 2)
Advanced Apprenticeship (Level 3)
Higher Apprenticeship (Level 4)

If, a person has a degree or equivalent qualification, can they still undertake an apprenticeship?
Yes they can, but it will not be funded by the government. The employer or the learner will have to pay for it themselves.

What are the Costs of Employing an Apprentice?
The costs of employing an apprentice are:
1. The apprentice’s pay (an apprentice is your employee and therefore have the same rights as all your other employees, however the minimum wage set for an apprentice is at a lower rate to take account of the investment you are making in them.
2. Your time in training them on the practical aspect of their job and their responsibilities and duties as an employee.
3. The learners time – allowing them to meet their trainer at the agreed times and to complete the necessary paperwork and tasks required to meet the criteria for the qualification(s).

Why does an Apprentice Need to Complete Transferable Skills (Maths and English)?
There are many different industry sectors, but they all share the same core skill sets of  Maths and English (and ICT in some cases). These skills are essential as they allow a person to undertake the day to day activities confidently and efficiently.

Employers have long argued that the current workforce does not have the necessary understanding of Maths and English. By therefore including maths and English in the framework the government is raising standards and ensuring that everyone has achieved a GCSE grade C or equivalent in both Maths and English. If, an apprentice already possess’ a GCSE grade C or equivalent then they are exempt from it.