Key apprenticeship announcements in the 2021-22 spending review

Last week (November 25th, 2020) the chancellor of the exchequer, Rishi Sunak, launched the government’s one-year spending review for 2021-22 focusing on the impact of COVID-19 on the UK but also confirming some key pieces of news for employers when it comes to apprenticeships.

We at Professional Academy know you may not have time to trawl through government documents so we wanted to highlight two of the key announcements around apprenticeships that could benefit your business in 2021.

Extension of Apprenticeship incentives

Earlier in the year it was announced that any business hiring a new apprentice starting before January 31st, 2021 would receive a hiring incentive of between £3000 and £1500 depending on the apprentice’s age.

This has now been extended until March 31st, 2021, this allows businesses to make the most of an optimum hiring window at the start of the year and prepare for what is hopefully a more positive business year once restrictions are fully relaxed and life returns to a semblance of normality.

When asked about this Professional Academy’s apprenticeship adviser, Wendy Spaxman, had this to say…

“This is amazing news for all employers, especially those who have had to make tough decisions during the pandemic. They can now look to the future and developing new talent to help their business grow/bounce back in 2021. It is also fantastic for those businesses who have adapted during the pandemic as it will allow them to invest in growing sales & marketing teams and training them with a nationally recognised and fully funded apprenticeship”.

If you are looking to hire new apprentices, why not reach out to Wendy to discuss the job roles and apprenticeship programme could help you support in Sales & Marketing.

Transfer of unused Levy funds

An announcement for later in 2021 but a welcome one for Levy Payers, as from August 2021 Levy Payers will be able to transfer unspent levy funds in bulk to SME’s via a pledge function.

This allows companies to potentially reward clients and suppliers alike with levy funds to spend on apprenticeship training programmes.

This will also be inline with the launch of a new online service to match levy payers with SMEs that “share their business priorities”.

There are also additional commitments from the government for constructions, as well as health and social care allowing them to “front-load” training for certain standards.

Most importantly there has also been a commitment for the government to “test approaches to supporting apprenticeships in industries with more flexible working pattern” which considering the changes to working habits, working hours, and UK industries during the pandemic will hopefully allow for businesses to better tailor programme delivery and support to fit their needs.

Professional Academy Sales & Marketing Director, Michael O’Flynn, was particularly buoyed by this part of the announcement…

“We’ve always tried to look at apprenticeships from a ‘Professional First’ perspective and the announcement that more flexible options will be tested and reviewed is a big step towards putting businesses and working professionals first. As is the news of a more coherent levy transfer system, which will hopefully ensure that levy funding is going towards the training it was always intended for rather then going back into the government coffers.”

All in all, it is good to see some positive announcements around apprenticeship funding in the spending review and hopefully businesses will be able to take advantage of all of the apprenticeship programmes available to help them to grow in 2021.

Professional Academy offer a range of fully funded, apprenticeship programmes, delivered and supported by active sales & marketing professionals. To find out more you can visit our Sales, Marketing, and Management apprenticeship pages or contact our apprenticeship advice team directly on 01223 365 505 or via email at