APM Policy Briefing: Apprenticeships and the Apprenticeship Levy
APM has published its latest policy briefing outlining what employers need to know about the formal launch of the Government’s much anticipated Apprenticeship Levy.
The introduction of a levy fundamentally alters the UK’s approach to skills funding – lessening the cost to the public purse, transferring the cost burden to employers. It also seeks to address the perception that firms’ investment in talent is on a downward trend.
The new levy is designed to increase the number and quality of apprenticeships in the UK, with the government aiming to create 3 million new placements by 2020. The Treasury has estimated it will raise nearly £3bn a year while tackling the UK’s ongoing skills gap.
In the UK, it is anticipated that two million additional jobs will require higher-level skills by 2022, with this challenge particularly severe at levels 4 and 5, or technician level, in the ‘new middle’ of the labour market.
The most recent labour market research from the UK Commission for Employment and Skills (March 2016) found that demand for highly skilled workers is continuing to rise across the UK and is particularly strong in sectors critical to the rebalancing of the economy, such as engineering, science and high-tech and construction.
As a result of the launch, from today, employers in all parts of the UK will be required to pay a levy of 0.5 per cent of their annual pay bill exceeding £3m a system which will draw in about 22,000 companies. All employers will receive a £15,000 annual allowance, to be offset against the bill. This effectively means that employers with an annual pay bill of £3m or less pay no levy.
APM, the Chartered body of the project profession, believes that apprenticeships are essential to assist the growth of the project management profession. APM is part of a Trailblazer employer group, led by Sellafield Ltd, which has developed the new Associate Project Manager Apprenticeship Standard at level 4, which has been available since January 2017.
The Associate Project Manager apprenticeship standard has a typical two year duration. The standard includes the APM Project Management Qualification (PMQ) as an on-programme assessment.
More information on the Trailblazer can be found here.