Friday, 19 August 2011
There are three levels of apprenticeship; Intermediate, Advanced and Higher with some leading to degree courses. The Company employs the apprentice and pays them. Currently the rate is a measly £2.50 per hour for all apprentices in their first year but thereafter those over 19 get the minimum wage. Fortunately many employers do pay more than the minimum, recognising everyone has to eat. Although most of the training is in the workplace, external training costs for 16 and 17 year olds are met 100% by the Government with a 50% contribution given for older employees.
The HR Dept recommends that you have an apprenticeship contract in place. This differs from the normal employment contract in that you commit to supporting them until they achieve their qualifications and it becomes difficult to terminate their employment before that date. On the positive side there is nothing as rewarding as growing and developing your own staff and by sharing their success you also get the return on your investment.