It’s coming up to a year since the Apprenticeship Levy came into force and some businesses are still not on board with the initiative.

In this guide, we’ll explore the barriers to the Apprenticeship Levy and show how organisations can overcome these and make the Levy work for them.

Failure of the Levy

Many companies argue that the Levy is just another business tax, and many are finding it too difficult to navigate their Digital Account.

It can be a minefield for many organisations and with the most recent statistics showing that there has been a decline in apprenticeship starts, it seems the Levy isn’t working to its full potential.

But it is important to remember that the Levy can be used to invest in training and is an important talent investment tool that could help to bridge industry skills gaps and increase the UK’s productivity.

To help businesses navigate the complexities of the system and take advantage of the Levy, we’ve produced an illustrative guide on how to use your Apprenticeship Service Account, take a look at the guide here.

The Levy works

For some businesses, the Levy is a welcomed opportunity to enhance staff development as well as bringing fresh, new talent help with apprenticeship levyinto an organisation. The Seashell Trust, a charity based in Cheadle Hulme, is reaping the benefits of the Apprenticeship Levy.

The Trust currently pay into the Apprenticeship Levy and use it to develop their Teaching Assistants, Learning Support Assistants and Residential Support Workers. However, Maria McGrath, Senior Learning and Development Business Partner at the Seashell Trust, is first to admit that the new apprenticeship arrangements have challenges for employers:

“Our apprentices sometimes fear the functional skills element of it – English and maths. For some this is a big barrier for them. The new element of 20 per cent off the job training is also quite a challenge. It is something the government needs to look at but we have worked with the Growth Company to put in a plan for that 20 per cent and they have it a lot easier for us. They are very structured and committed.”

The charity has now taken on three cohorts of management apprentices and they are delighted with their new business administration apprentice who has progressed to a level 4 apprenticeship in project management.

Adds Maria: “I would say to other employers considering apprentices that they need to look at it – now! It’s time we took the blinkers off with apprenticeships. It’s not just a box ticking exercise. This is real learning and there are huge opportunities for your company. I’ve got the best job in the world!”

Read the full case study here.

Over to you

To help overcome your concerns with the Levy, we can manage, implement and provide hands-on support for practically every element of the Apprenticeship Levy.

If you’ve got any questions or simply want to find out more - don’t hesitate to reach out to us on Twitter, LinkedIn or email.

And if you’re looking for help with organising your Levy, be sure to get in touch with our expert Levy team today: 

Talk to our Levy team →