Apprenticeship funding and incentives

Apprenticeship funding and incentives

A higher and degree apprenticeship is a great way to develop your team. Thanks to the government’s apprentice levy, you can get vital funding to cover your costs. Watch the video below to see how the funding works.

Funding and the apprenticeship levy

The government’s Apprenticeship Service makes it easier for employers to choose and pay online for higher and degree apprenticeship training.

The apprenticeship levy dictates how much funding and support your business can access. However, the levy only applies if you have an annual wage bill of more than £3 million.

Read more about the levy on the Department for Education website.

Funding for levy-paying employers

Levy payments will be 0.5 per cent of your total wage bill, minus a £15,000 levy allowance. Those payments - and a 10 per cent government top-up - will fund apprenticeship course fees and any end-point assessment, up to the relevant funding cap.  

Funding for non-levy-paying employers

If your organisation’s total wage bill is below the £3 million threshold, the government will fund up to 90 per cent of apprenticeship course fees, up to the relevant funding cap.

For employers with less than 50 employees, you receive 100% funding for apprentices who are under the age of 19 when they start their course.

Funding bands and caps

Every higher and degree apprenticeship framework and standard has a funding band. Each band has a cap on funding the government will offer.

Read more in the Apprenticeship Standards Funding Rules 2016 to 2017.

Apprenticeship funding calculator

The Education and Skills Funding Agency has created an apprenticeship funding calculator to help you understand the government’s reforms.

Use the calculator to estimate:

  • whether your organisation will pay the apprenticeship levy
  • how much you will have available to spend on apprenticeships
  • how much the government will contribute towards the cost of training.

Use the apprenticeship funding calculator.

Accessing and claiming funding for apprenticeships

There is a process to follow when you get government funding for a higher and degree apprenticeship. The flowchart below shows how and when you can access government funding for apprenticeships.

Download our funding flowchart.

Incentive payments for SMEs

The government also offers incentive payments to SMEs with less than 50 employees.

In some situations, these extra incentives can see 100 per cent of your higher and degree apprenticeship training costs covered.

You can claim incentives if:

  • your apprentice is 16 to 18 years old
  • your organisation is an SME with less than 50 employees
  • your apprentice completes their training.

Download the relevant incentive claim forms:

Learn more

Find out more about how higher and degree apprenticeship can have a positive impact on your business. You can also browse the subjects we offer and explore other useful information, including policies and FAQs.

Get in touch

We’re working with government to understand how the apprenticeship funding reforms affect your business. Our apprenticeships team is available to make sure you get the full benefit of our higher and degree apprenticeships.

Contact them by emailing or phoning 0114 225 3433.

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