The requirement for an Apprenticeship Agreement between an employer and an apprentice under the ASCL Act 2009 sections 32-36 came into force on the 6 April 2012. An Apprenticeship Agreement is required at the commencement of the apprenticeship for a new apprentice who starts on or after that date.
The Apprenticeship Agreement must state that the apprentice will be undertaking an apprenticeship in a particular skill, trade or occupation.
The Apprenticeship Agreement can be in the form of a written statement of particulars under the Employment Rights Act 1996; or a document in writing in the form of a contract of employment or a letter of engagement where the employer’s duty under the 1996 act is treated as met.
Existing and new contracts of employment between the apprentice and the employer which meet the 1996 act will also meet the Apprenticeship Agreement requirements provided they include a statement setting out the skill, trade or occupation linked to a relevant recognised English framework, issued by the appropriate issuing authority, for which the apprentice is being trained and is explicit.
The employer can offer a fixed time or a permanent contract. A fixed term contract allows you the option of employing them at the end of their apprenticeship. Some companies guarantee a permanent position at the end of the apprenticeship, but the decision is yours. However, keeping the apprentice within the organisation is one of the key benefits – allowing you to reap the longer term rewards of your investment.
All HR issues will be dealt with directly by your company.
The minimum wage for an apprentice is £3.50 per hour (Increasing to £3.70 as of April 2018). However, we suggest that you pay telecoms apprentices more than this to attract a high calibre applicant.
Research shows that the average salary of a techno-electrical apprentice employee is £200 – £240 per week (approx. £10.5 – £12.5k per year). Most companies will start at this salary and then give the apprentice a pay rise 6 – 9 months into the apprenticeship once they are more likely to be able to demonstrate competence in their workplace.
It is important to note that if your apprentice is 19 when they complete the first year of their apprenticeship their wages must increase to the national minimum wage for that age.
ITP will work with you to create a job description. We will then advertise the position on the National Apprenticeship Service website and on our website. ITP will sift the initial applications and organise an assessment day after which we will offer you a shortlist of candidates to interview and select.
You should advise us who you wish to employ and give us feedback on anyone who is not suitable so we can pass that on to the applicants to help them for the future. ITP will then put the selected candidate in direct contact with you for you to agree contractual arrangements.
As apprenticeships are work-based training programmes, most of the training is ‘on the job’ at your premises. However, for telecoms apprenticeships they will receive the knowledge element at college. The client shall support the ITP, the learning provider and the apprentice by ensuring that relevant work is available for the apprentice.
As the employer, you must give your apprentice an induction into their role and a mentor/line manager who will be responsible for their on-the-job training. You are also responsible for paying the apprentice’s wages. The apprentice will be given a workbook, and it is your responsibility to make sure that the apprentice gets the right experience so that they can demonstrate competence. The training provider will provide these workbooks so that you and the apprentice are clear about the requirements.
You should also ensure that your apprentice has clear action plans and regular reviews are in place to monitor progress.
You will need to inform the ITP immediately if the apprentice is not able to attend their block in college or their NVQ visit from the assessor.
Apprentices must have a substantial proportion of their time as an apprentice actually doing the job they are developing a competence in. This should be on premises where the job is usually carried out. This will normally be for a minimum of 30 hours per week, but may be more. Apprentices must be paid for both the hours they spend working and for those that are spent studying the Apprenticeships Standard.
Apprenticeships where the apprentice is working and studying for less than a combined total of 30 hours per week should have their minimum planned delivery durations extended by a corresponding proportion. For example, the usual minimum planned delivery is a 12 month apprenticeship with 30 hours per week spent at the employer, but where the individual can only work 20 hours per week, the provider will need to extend the end date by one third.
ITP’s telecoms Apprenticeship Scheme is unique in that it joins together apprentices from a number of employers in sufficient numbers to create a ‘cohort’. This cohort can attend college and follow the programme together for the duration of the course.
We are also able to work together with you to ensure that the programme meets the needs of the industry and you as individual employers. We commit to consulting with you and the training provider at least three times per year to review the programme and how we want it to develop.
We will actively encourage more organisations to join the scheme so we can grow it and perhaps offer it in other geographical areas.
We are also actively petitioning the National Apprenticeship Service (NAS) and the government to raise the profile of the scheme and promote the opportunity we as a group of employers are offering to young people. All members of the programme will benefit from the PR we generate.
We will also work with the Engineering Council and The British Computer Society (BCS) to ensure the scheme is mapped to the Engineering Council’s professional registration ICT Technician, or RITTech. This will ensure that all graduated apprentices not only gain an apprenticeship but also letters after their name (MITP ICTTech/RITTech). This could be the first step to ultimately becoming Chartered Engineers. This also means the ITP scheme offers youngsters a very credible alternative to University.
ITP have years of experience of working with apprentices and will use this to work closely with you and your learners to ensure the programme runs smoothly and any issues are identified as soon as possible.
We will make each apprentice a member of the ITP for the duration of their course so that they can benefit from our cross-industry mentoring programme and networking clubs and events specifically aimed at apprentices from companies large and small across the UK.
As well as regular phone and email contact and meetings, we will survey you and your apprentices at regular intervals to ensure the scheme is meeting your needs and so we can spot opportunities for improvement.