Businesses are being urged to take advantage of a time-limited cash bonus scheme to support the recruitment of apprentices.
In the recent budget, Rishi Sunak extended a scheme which now offers £3,000 to employers across the region that take on an apprentice.
It means businesses now have until September to take advantage of the grants, which are currently undersubscribed.
This is in addition to the current £1,000 incentive employers can receive for hiring a 16-18 year old or an under 25 with an education, health and care plan or has been in the care of their local authority.
Pete Donnelly, business development and commercial manager at Northern Skills Group – Middlesbrough College’s apprenticeship training arm – is calling on businesses to take up the offer, now that many are considering long term plans as part of the post-lockdown roadmap.
He said: “This is a great opportunity for businesses in the region, particularly now many will be revisiting growth plans that were put on hold in the early part of 2020 due to the pandemic.
“From April, employers can claim £3,000 per hire, regardless of the apprentice’s age. For many small and medium-sized businesses it’s recruitment support like this that will help build a sustainable workforce and prevent continuity problems as the economy recovers.
“The offer could be particularly attractive in tandem with the “super-deduction” tax incentive for businesses investing in equipment, which plan to grow operations and therefore will need to hire.”
Tees Valley businesses can also take advantage of the Tees Valley Combined Authority’s ‘Apprenticeship Support Grant’.
The grant supports SME’s who create apprenticeships in sectors facing high demand and growth from employers as identified in the Tees Valley Strategic Economic Plan.
These sectors are advanced manufacturing; process, chemicals and energy; logistics; health and biologics; digital and creative; business and professional services; construction; health care; culture and leisure and education.