Apprenticeships are work-based training programmes which lead to nationally recognised qualifications. In 2017, the Government introduced the Apprenticeship Levy with a view to creating funding for apprenticeships and encouraging employees to invest in apprenticeship programmes.
For some employers they can be a great way to attract and develop new talent. However a key barrier to taking on apprentices in certain sectors is the need for varied and flexible employment patterns.
What Are ‘Portable Flexi-Job Apprenticeships’?
On 6 April 2022 the Government will launch a ‘portable flexi-job apprenticeship’ pilot. This is a new type of flexi-job Apprenticeship which will allow employers taking on an apprentice to only give a three month commitment, instead of the usual 12-month minimum commitment. This will allow these apprentices to complete discrete blocks of employment with training, with different employers and businesses, throughout the course of their apprenticeship.
Who Will Benefit?
Certain sectors will particularly benefit from more short-term or project-based apprenticeships. At the moment, these portable flexi-job apprenticeships may only be carried out in certain sectors, namely within the creative and construction industries.
After the minimum three-month arrangement with one employer, the apprentice can either begin a new arrangement with the same employer or move to continue their apprenticeship with a new employer.
How Long Will the Pilot Last?
The portable flexi-job apprenticeship pilot scheme is intended to last for 18 to 24 months. It will be reviewed after 9, 12 and 18 months. The Government has said it will publish guidance ahead of the pilot start date. If the pilot is successful, it may become more widely available in the future.