01332 387421 BusinessEnquiries@derby-college.ac.uk



The government announced in the 2015 Summer Budget its new initiative to help fund 3 million apprenticeships by 2020. A part of that initiative was the Apprenticeship Levy which came into effect in April 2017 ‒ this has changed the way apprenticeships are funded.

Non-levy paying employers

Those employers under the £3m threshold will need to make a contribution towards apprenticeship training, this is known as co-investment. You will pay your contribution direct to the training provider and you will be able to spread the cost of the training over the lifetime of the apprenticeship. The amount of co-investment was confirmed at 10%, that being the employer will contribute 10% and the government will contribute the further 90%.

Extra Support

16-18 year olds

The government is looking to make extra payments to help meet the additional costs to support employing young apprentices. If this happens, it will be paid to you through your chosen apprenticeship provider.

Additional needs

Similar to 16 - 18 year olds, the government is considering a similar payment if you recruit 19 – 24 year olds who have an Education and Healthcare Plan provided by the local authority or those who have been in the care of the local authority.

English and Maths

If your apprentice doesn’t have the minimum standards required in maths and English they will need to complete a maths or English course. The government will pay the providers directly to cover the cost of this training.

National Insurance breaks for employers of apprentices under 25

From April 2016 employers of apprentices under 25 will no longer be required to pay secondary class 1 National Insurance Contributions (NIC) on earnings up to the upper earnings limit, which is currently £43,000, for those employees.

This is a saving of 13.8% on everything an apprentice earns over £8,000 per year up to the upper earnings limit.

Choosing Derby College as an apprenticeship partner

Non levy paying employers will partner with an approved training and assessment centre to deliver agreed training and assessment for their apprentices.

Derby College can be your apprenticeship delivery partner; we will be supporting employers throughout their journey with us.

Our Business Consultants are a team of experts who are able to guide you effortlessly through the system. We offer high quality accredited apprenticeship training so your employees will be trained to the highest possible standard.

What we will do for you

  • We will send one of our Business Consultants into your business to support the management of the process with you end to end.
  • Help plan your strategic workforce and support succession planning.
  • Advertise your vacancy at no cost to you. This is over numerous media platforms reaching over the D2N2 area and nationally in some cases.
  • Select perspective apprentice through robust screening and interviews at no cost to you.
  • Deliver employment training – Employability Skills.
  • Arrange interviews and / or selection days for you to choose the best person for your business at no cost.
  • Support you to gain access to any additional funding to support you and your apprentice.
  • Deliver the apprenticeship framework / standard and support you and your apprentice to gain maximum benefit through the apprenticeship programme.

In addition to this we will also assist you:

  • To secure the provider for the end point assessments (standards only).

We work across a wide range of growing sectors including:

  • Care
  • Construction
  • Engineering
  • Early Years
  • Administration
  • Hair and Beauty
  • Hospitality and Catering
  • Health
  • IT and Social Media
  • Land-based
  • Manufacturing
  • Motor Vehicle
  • Retail
  • Sports


Our most frequently asked questions are answered below

If you can't find the answer to your question, ask one of our Business Consultants.

What is an Apprenticeship?

When it comes to the Apprenticeship Levy, there are rules governing what an apprenticeship is. The main ones are:

  • The apprentice must be employed in a real job; they may be an existing employee or a new hire.
  • The apprentice must work towards achieving an approved Apprenticeship Standard or framework.
  • The apprenticeship training must last at least 12 months.
  • The apprentice must spend at least 20% of their time on off-the-job training.

Does co-investment for non-levy paying employers come in from 2018?

No, co-investment for non-levy paying employers came in from 1st May 2017

What support will be available for non-Levy paying employers?

Government will help employers who are not paying the Levy to meet the costs of apprenticeships training by providing financial government support. Non-Levy payers will be asked to make a financial contribution to the cost of training and assessment in partnership with government.

Will Non-Levy paying employers have to make a financial contribution to Apprenticeship training?

Government is proposing a co-investment model whereby employers that don’t pay the Levy will be asked to make a contribution to the cost of the training and government will pay the rest, up to the maximum amount of funding available for that apprenticeship. Employers will pay this directly to the provider and they will be able to spread it over the lifetime of the apprenticeship, to a schedule agreed by the provider and employer. Non-Levy payers will contribute 10% of the cost of apprenticeship training.

How do non-Levy payers pay for training?

Non-Levy payers do not need a Digital Apprenticeship Service (DAS) account. Employers will agree a price and pay their co-investment to the training provider directly and the Government will make their contribution directly to employers. Although by 2020, non-Levy payers will need to transfer to the DAS to pay for Apprenticeship training and assessment.

I am a small company will I have to pay for an apprenticeship programme?

Companies with less than 50 employers who recruit a 16-18-year-old or a 19 – 24-year-old care leaver. These candidates will be 100% funded by government.

What provisions will the Apprenticeship Service offer?

Whether an employer pays the Levy or not, the DAS will help them to:

  • Select an Apprenticeship Standard or framework
  • Choose the training provider or providers employers want to deliver the training
  • Choose an assessment organisation
  • Advertise apprenticeship vacancies

Do apprentices need to have Level 1 and 2 English and maths?

Yes, apprentices have to meet a minimum requirement in both English and maths up to Level 2. Employers will need to work with their provider to identify which of their apprentices require this training. The Government will pay providers directly, for the Level 1 and 2 English and maths training they provide to apprentices. Employers will not be asked to pay the training provider for it directly.

How will the government fund Apprenticeships which start before the levy is introduced?

Apprenticeships which start before the introduction of the Levy will continue to be funded for their full duration under the current model. Apprenticeship funding is provided through the Skills Finding Agency (SFA), and the size of the contribution varies depending on the sector and the age of the apprentice.

What are the new Standards?

Standards have been developed by employers in response to feedback that traditional Frameworks may not always be fit for purpose in ensuring that apprentices gain the skills that employers need. To ensure that the required skills are achieved, Standards will include an End Point Assessment of each apprentices’ skills in terms of the requirements of the specific Standard. Frameworks will be phased out and it is planned that they will be entirely replaced by Standards by 2020.

What is End Point Assessment?

End Point Assessment is an independent assessment, which will be used to judge all Apprenticeship Standards and it is where an apprentice can fail or pass an apprenticeship. In addition, it is now possible for an apprentice to gain a merit or distinction.

What about English & Maths?

The requirement for functional skills up to Level 2 in English and maths will continue to be required under the new Standards. ICT functional skills will not be required (unless specific new Standards include this as a requirement).