Hiring an apprentice is a productive way for a business to develop a motivated, skilled and qualified workforce. You can offer apprenticeships to new recruits, or to develop the skills of your existing workforce to support with professional development.

Apprenticeships are open to all ages and can start at any point throughout the year. Apprenticeships are available from Intermediate Apprenticeships at Level 2, to Degree Apprenticeships at Level 7.

There is a wide range of funding and incentives for apprenticeships available too, meaning that choosing an apprenticeship can be a cost-effective way to ensure you have a skilled workforce.


Understanding the apprenticeship landscape can be confusing, so our team of friendly Apprenticeships Advisers are available to offer your business free and impartial advice and support you through the process. They can help you with recruiting an apprentice or preparing an existing staff member for an apprenticeship, choosing the most relevant apprenticeship standard and provider, applying for available levy funds and incentives and with setting up and using the apprenticeship digital account.

The Apprenticeship Hub also offers free capacity building support to business looking to take on an apprentice, such as Level’s 2 & 3 in Effective Mentoring, Risk Assessment and Recruitment Resourcing. See the full list here.

To take advantage of this support contact us at or call us on 01904 221 682.


An apprenticeship combines hands-on work with the opportunity to train and obtain qualifications. At least 20% of the apprentices paid time is set aside for learning. This may be in the work premises or at college, university or external workshop. The rest of the apprentice’s time is spent applying their knowledge and skills in the actual workplace, doing the job they have been employed to do. At the end of it, they will gain nationally and sector recognised certification.
The minimum length of an apprenticeship is 12 months; however, the length of apprenticeship depends on the sector and level chosen. An apprenticeship at intermediate level 2 would last approximately 12-18 months, while an apprenticeship at advanced level 3 will last approximately 24 months. Higher level and degree apprenticeships can last three to five years. Apprenticeships can also be completed part-time over a longer period of time.
There are different rates of pay for apprentices depending on age and what year of the apprenticeship the individual is completing. You can find the current minimum rate of pay here: National Minimum Wage
Requirements vary depending on the level of the apprenticeship. For level 2 and 3 apprenticeships there are usually no entry requirements, however if the individual has not previously achieved Level 2 in Maths and English they will need to complete this as part of their apprenticeship. For higher level apprenticeships there will likely be a minimum Level 2 in Maths and English requirement.
Many providers will deliver training and learning in the workplace rather than the individual having to attend College.
All apprentices are required to have a workplace Mentor assigned, this can be a Line Manager or Supervisor sufficiently experienced in the subject area. The Mentor’s role is to give support, advice and guidance throughout the duration of the apprenticeship and will also be responsible for final confirmation that the apprentice is ready to progress to End Point Assessment. The Mentor will be required to attend progress meetings with the trainer and apprentice, these are required to take place approximately every 6 weeks.
Off-the-job training is learning which is undertaken outside of day-to-day work duties and leads towards the achievement of the apprenticeship. This training takes place within the apprentices normal (contracted) paid working hours.
Once the apprentice has completed their training they will have a gateway meeting with their Mentor and apprenticeship provider to agree that the apprentice is ready for their End Point Assessment (EPA). EPA lasts between 2 and 4 months usually, and during this time they will be required to complete 2-3 assessments.
They will achieve the Apprenticeship Standard for the subject and level they have been studying. They will also achieve Maths and English if they had not previously achieved these prior to starting. Some apprenticeships may also provide an additional qualification, such as a diploma.
Advertising and recruitment can be completed through the National Apprenticeship Service site. You will first need to register in order to use the service, however there is no cost attached. If you would like support navigating through this process one of our Apprenticeship Advisers will be able to assist you.
No! Some people think that Apprenticeships are just for “young people”, this isn't true! Apprenticeships are open to anyone aged 16 and over and not in full time education. There is no upper age limit. Apprenticeships are also a great way to upskill and retain your current workforce.
Provided your wage bill is less than £3 million per year, the government pays 95% of the training and assessment costs for apprentices, and you pay the remaining 5%. You may be able to apply for Levy Transfer to cover the remaining 5%. As an employer you have overall responsibility for the apprentice’s salary and regulatory employment costs. There are also various local and national incentive schemes that can be accessed. One of our Apprenticeship Advisers will be able to assist you with accessing these funds.


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The Apprenticeship Hub is part funded by the European Social Fund as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020, and is delivered in Partnership with North Yorkshire County Council, East Riding of Yorkshire Council and Calderdale College