Hire An Apprentice – Apprenticeships for SMEs

Benefits to Businesses

You want young, enthusiastic talent that you can mould and develop for your business? The answer: hire an apprentice. A growing number of companies are doing so, with 96 per cent of businesses reporting benefits from their apprentices.

Since April 2020, several new benefits of taking on an apprentice were announced were grant incentives. For more information on these benefits, follow the link to our ‘Plan for Jobs’ Page.

What are Apprenticeships?

An Apprenticeship is a way for young people and adult learners to earn while they learn in a real job, gaining a real qualification and a real future. Hiring apprentices helps businesses to grow their own talent by developing a motivated, skilled and qualified workforce.

Quality is key to Apprenticeships – providing high quality training that benefits both apprentices and employers.

There has never been a better time to employ an apprentice, or start an Apprenticeship.

Apprenticeships help businesses grow their own talent.

Nearly every employer that takes on an apprentice (96%) reports benefits to their business.

78% of businesses report improved productivity as a result of employing an apprentice.

Other benefits reported by apprentice-employers include improved product or service, the introduction of new ideas to the organisation, improved staff morale and better staff retention, each mentioned by around two-thirds of employers.

Apprenticeships develop a motivated, skilled and qualified workforce.

Businesses that offer Apprenticeships view them as beneficial to their long-term development. According to the British Chambers of Commerce, most employ an apprentice to improve the skills base within their business.

Apprentices are supported by quality training from local training organisations.

Apprenticeships improve productivity while reducing costs.

Apprenticeships are boosting productivity by enabling businesses to grow their skills base. The average Apprenticeship increases business productivity by £214 per week, with these gains including increased profits, lower prices and better products.

Apprentices are paid at least the relevant minimum wage and training costs are covered for many apprentices.

Businesses that employ up to 1000 employees, may even get a £1000 Employer Grant to help cover the cost of starting a new apprentice aged 16 to 24 years old.

From accountancy to veterinary nursing, there are Apprenticeships covering more skills and industries that you would imagine.

Apprenticeships are available at Intermediate, Advanced and Higher (degree) level, covering more than 170 industries and 1500 job roles, from advertising to youth work via environmental engineering and nuclear decommissioning.

Over 100,000 employers are employing or have employed quality apprentices in more than 200,000 locations.

The National Apprenticeship Service is there to support employers and has made it easier than ever to employ an apprentice.

Visit www.apprenticeships.org.uk/employers for more information.

Top 10 Benefits from Taking on an Apprentice – The business benefits for companies like yours are enormous, here’s why:

1. Apprenticeships are a tried and tested way to recruit new staff, re-train or upskill existing staff or people returning to your business after a break

2. Learning can often be done in your workplace, meaning minimal disruption and maximum impact

3. They help you tackle skill shortages in your business
4. Up to 100% funding could be available to support Apprenticeship programmes within your business (you will still need to pay the apprentice’s wages)
5. They are good for your corporate social responibility
6. They can be tailored to specific job roles, making them flexible to the needs of your business
7. Provide you with the skilled workers you need for the future
8. They’re a great way of attracting people with fresh new ideas
9. They provide a strong foundation to your staff base and show your commitment to the future development of your business
10. It can encourage a culture of learning


1. There has never been a better time to employ an apprentice, or start an

2. Some of the country’s top employers are offering work experience, traineeships and

apprenticeships to help give young people the best start in their career.

3. Up to 28,000 apprenticeship vacancies are available online at any one time.

4. Apprenticeships are now being designed by employers for employers

5. Apprenticeships are available in 1500 job roles, covering more than 170 industries,

from advertising to youth work and from environmental engineering to legal.

6. More than 1300 employers are involved in designing the new apprenticeships

7. 194 apprenticeship standards have been published so far, of which over 60 are

higher and degree apprenticeships.

8. Apprenticeship participation now stands at a record level – 871,800 funded

apprentices participated on an apprenticeship in the 2014 to 2015 academic year.

9. 19% of advanced apprentices progress to higher education.

10. Almost 9 out of every 10 apprenticeship employers hoping to achieve business

benefits tell us that apprenticeships deliver – including 89% reporting that it has

helped their business improve the quality of their product or service.

11. There are currently 75 higher and degree apprenticeships available, with more in

development, including foundation degrees, HNDs and full honours degrees. These

include job roles ranging from legal services to banking and engineering.

12. After finishing, the majority of apprentices (90%) will stay in employment (including

2% self-employed), with seven in ten (71%) staying with the same employer.

13. A quarter of former apprentices had received a promotion (23%) within 12 months

of finishing, and for intermediate and advance apprentices, three quarters reported

taking on more responsibility in their job after completing their apprenticeship.

14. 89% of apprentices are satisfied with their apprenticeship

15. 85% of apprentices said their ability to do the job had improved, and 83% of

apprentices said their career prospects had improved.

16. Traineeships have been developed by employers making them a great stepping

stone to an apprenticeship or other job.

17. Traineeships are continuing to grow with 5,000 starts in the first quarter of the 2014

to 2015 academic year.

18. 84% of providers and 94% of employers consider traineeships an effective way of

increasing young people’s chances of finding paid jobs and apprenticeships