Kickstart Scheme: Everything You Need To Know


If you’ve been following Boris’ weekly coronavirus briefings, you may have heard him mention the Kickstart Scheme. This refers to the government plan to support young people in finding employment during and immediately after the coronavirus pandemic. In this post, we’ll outline what the Kickstart Scheme is, how it applies to apprenticeships and how you can utilise it to bring junior talent into your business.

What is the Kickstart Scheme?

The government’s Kickstart Scheme was announced in July 2020 in response to concerns about the UK’s economic recovery from coronavirus. With young people aged 16-24 among the worst affected by job losses due to the pandemic, part of the plan focuses on supporting and creating job opportunities for this group.

Alongside apprenticeship support, the plan also includes thousands of fully subsidised jobs for young people claiming Universal Credit and at risk of long-term unemployment. Employers can claim funding for 6 month placements at national minimum wage.

How does the Kickstart Scheme apply to apprenticeships?

£1.6 billion has been allocated to training programmes and apprenticeships to help young people find employment. Employers can claim £2,000 for each new apprentice they hire aged 16-24 or £1,500 if the apprentice is over 25, valid for starts until 31st January 2021. This is on top of the existing £1,000 government grant for new apprenticeship hires aged 16-18 and those aged under 25 with an Education, Health and Care (EHC) Plan.

How can I apply for a Kickstart Scheme grant?

Your training provider will be able to claim the £2,000 grant for you. If you’re looking to claim funding for 6 month placements, you can apply directly to the government if you have more than 30 job placements, or find a Kickstart gateway to apply for a lower number on your behalf.

If you’re interested in using the Kickstart Scheme to add an apprentice to your team, please get in touch. For starts before 31st January 2021 when the scheme ends, we’d recommend advertising your vacancy before mid-November. This gives plenty of time for the interview process, ensuring you hire the right candidates for your business.