How to choose an Apprenticeship Levy training partner
PUBLISHED: 14:43 03 May 2017
Rachel Harber at Omega Resource Group has created a new guide that provides help and assistance for organisations who are setting up their Digital Apprenticeship Service Account, she explains the RoATP register, and what to look for when assessing a training partner
With payments starting in May 2017, the Apprenticeship Levy requires employers to invest in apprenticeships, with the size of the investment dependent on the size of the business.
The purpose of the levy is to encourage employers to contribute towards this rising demand for apprenticeship programmes, and to raise additional funds to improve the quality of the training schemes.
Digital Apprenticeship Service Account
Employers are encouraged to register as soon as possible for an Online Apprenticeship Service Account which has been set up by the government to support the levy.
The digital service is similar to an online banking account, whereby Apprenticeship Levy funds are paid into each month, with the first balance being available at the end of May 2017.
A digital apprenticeship service account enables an employer to manage their funds and programme and assists in financial spend and the recruitment of apprentices through approved training providers.
How it helps employers:
• Management of funds
• Address skills shortages
• Invest in the skills and training
A key feature of the accounts is that it enables businesses to select and pay for Government-approved training providers.
Government Approved Training
All employers must choose an apprenticeship training provider and negotiate the cost of the training.
With the implementation of the Apprenticeship Levy, the Government has decided to introduce new funding caps on each apprenticeship. This is the upper limit to which the Government funding from the digital account can be used to pay an apprentices training.
There are a proposed 15 new apprenticeship bands, ranging from £1,500 to £27,000. This value is the maximum amount that the Government will fund from a business’ digital account.
Upon negotiation, if a value above the maximum is negotiated for any reason, the business will have to fund the additional surplus separately from the digital account.
Register of Apprenticeship Training Providers (RoATP)
To be eligible to deliver apprenticeship training for organisations must be listed on the (RoATP) register.
Organisations that are listed on the RoATP have been through an application process with the Skills Funding Agency (SFA) that reviews:
• Due diligence
• Financial health
This application process assesses the training providers capability to deliver high-quality apprenticeship training.
Types of Apprenticeship Training Providers
There are three main types of approved training providers on the RoATP register, these are:
1. Main provider
Organisations that can be selected by levy paying employers to deliver apprenticeship training, or selected by another main provider to work as a subcontractor
2. Employer provider
Levy paying employers who are permitted to provide training to their own staff or to apprentices in their connected companies.
3. Supporting provider
Organisations that only deliver as a subcontractor for contract values between £100,000 and £500,000 per year in total.
It is essential to be fully aware of these options before choosing a partner as well as how RoATP records their financial health.
Understanding The Financial Health of The Training Provider
When selecting an approved training provider, companies should be aware that organisations on the RoATP register are listed in two financial heath categories, these are:
• Parent Company Guarantee
The financial health assessment for this organisation was moderated to a pass due to the submission of a parent company guarantee with their application to the RoATP.
• New Organisation Without Financial Track Record
The organisation has not been trading for a sufficient period to provide a fully complete set of financial statements as part of the RoATP application process.
The choice of provider is down to each organisation to decide upon and evaluate on their own merits.
Choosing A Training Partner
Due to the large and diverse number of training providers on the RoATP register additional research should be carried out before deciding on a partner.
• Size and reach
Find out the size, scale and geographical coverage of the training provider. Can they adequately cater for your business size and requirements?
Ask them to demonstrate how they have contributed to culture changes within SME and corporate organisations.
Find out how often they win contracts and the size. Have they won any contracts for the English Government in conjunction with the Skills Funding Agency?
• Success rates
Find out what their training success rates are, and how many people they have
previously helped in attaining nationally accredited qualifications.
• Awarding bodies
Ask them to demonstrate their awarding and funding body rating and find out how the Office for Standards in Education (Ofsted) score them.
Ask the training company for references you can contact from similar organisations.
Omega Resource has created a full guide providing help and assistance for organisations on what to look for when assessing a training partner.
Included in the free guide:
• Apprenticeship Levy overview
• Digital Apprenticeship Service Account
• Government approved training
• RoATP register of apprenticeship training providers
• Training provider types and financial health
• A free ‘Supplier Assessment Template’
Omega Resource Group Ltd is an ISO registered, multi award-winning resource solutions business, designing and supplying recruitment solutions internationally. Recognised as one of the UK’s fastest growing recruitment specialists, Omega Resource Group serves the majority of specialised industry sectors including automotive, aerospace, construction, manufacturing, energy, professional services and logistics.
With UK offices in Stonehouse, Liverpool, Tewkesbury, Swindon and further international locations in the Middle East, Omega Resource Group is one of the largest recruitment solutions provider headquartered in the South West region, recognised in the Top 25 of the fastest growing businesses in Gloucestershire 2016 and was shortlisted as Growth Business of the Year in the Gloucestershire Business Awards 2016.