Not yet a year old, the apprenticeship levy is under fire and a topic of fierce debate. Research from the CIPD suggests that employers are failing to fully embrace the new levy, with one in five writing it off as tax and more than half calling for it to be scrapped.
This article featured in People Management written by Jake Tween emphasises that the levy needs to be given time. With the acute lack of skills in manufacturing, apprentices are key in bridging this gap. Perseverance by employers is key to making the levy a success. Good support is provided on how to access the levy funds and once over this obstacle, it is plain sailing to keep using the funds.
The training provided is also coming under the hammer with Ofsted indicating poor-quality training because of new schemes and lack of policing. My advice is to give it time as anything new takes time to bed in. By carefully choosing the right training provider and working with them on the right training for your apprentices and ensuring regular communication on their progress, it can only get better year on year.
Give the levy time First, it’s important to look past the headlines. The levy is not yet a year old and any new system needs time to bed in and be refined before it has a chance of success. The Institute for Apprenticeships has already started this process, undertaking a review of apprenticeship standards to make sure they are fit for purpose. But this too needs patience, coordination and collaboration. Once systems are established to ensure effective quality control and proper management of apprenticeships, we will start to see the rewards from the levy.