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How to take on an apprentice (Scotland)

Our first apprenticeship blog of the year ‘How to take on an apprentice’ was a big hit with our web visitors. Now comes part 2 in the series, regarding information aimed at Scotland, with blogs on Wales and Northern Ireland due to be added in the coming weeks. So if you are a Scottish based company, looking to take on an apprentice, read on…

Type of Apprenticeships
In Scotland there are three types of Apprenticeships. Of these, the Domestic Plumbing and Heating apprenticeship is only available at Modern Apprenticeship Level.

Foundation apprenticeships
Apprentice age: 15 - 18
Suitable for: School pupils
Qualification level: SCQF level 6, same as a Higher
Duration: Two academic years

Modern Apprenticeship
Apprentice age: 16 +
Suitable for: New and existing employees
Qualification level: From SCQF level 5 right up to Professional Apprenticeships at SCQF level 11/12
Duration: Can range from a year to four years depending on the framework. The Domestic Plumbing and Heating Framework estimates that recruits will take 3 years to complete the apprenticeship.

Graduate Apprenticeship
Apprentice age: 16 +
Suitable for: New and existing employees
Qualification level: Currently available at SCQF level 8 (DipHE) and SCQF level 10 (Honours degree)
Duration: From 2-4 years, depending on the level of qualification and programme of study.

How do you hire an apprentice?
There are three steps:

1) Fund your apprentice
While you will need to pay your apprentice their wages, Skills Development Scotland will contribute towards the cost of training. The amount of funding available varies per subject, but for the 2017-2018 academic year, those aged 16-19 could expect funding to cover training up to £8,700, those aged between 20-24 could expect funding to cover training up to £6,500, and those aged 25+ could receive funding towards training costs up to £5,500.

2) Find a Framework
The Domestic Plumbing and Heating Modern Apprenticeship is at SCQF Level 7 / SVQ Level 3. You can download the full and current Framework here http://www.skillsdevelopmentscotland.co.uk/media/33293/domestic_plumbing_and_heating_scqf_level_7_aug_2015.pdf

3) Find a Training provider
You can find a training provider in your area by using this handy online tool from Skills Development Scotland https://www.apprenticeships.scot/take-on-an-apprentice/find-a-training-provider/ 

What are your obligations as an employer?
Your apprentice must:

  • Work with experienced staff
  • Learn job-specific skills

 

As an employer, you are responsible for arranging their contract of employment and paying their wages. Apprentices also have rights just like any other worker. This includes:

  • Employing the apprentice in a real job that works towards an approved apprenticeship framework. The role must give them the opportunity to gain the skills and knowledge to pass their assessments.
  • Paying the apprentice for all the time spent training and studying, including any time at college.

 

And apprentices are entitled to:

  • Paid holidays
  • Sick pay
  • Benefits you offer other employees such as childcare voucher schemes
  • Support you offer such as coaching or mentoring
  • Apprentices have the same employment rights as your other employees when it comes to redundancy too.

 

What do you have to pay your apprentice?
Apprentices are paid at least the minimum wage. Check out the minimum wage rates here. https://www.gov.uk/national-minimum-wage-rates

Where can I get more information?
Apprenticeships Scotland: www.apprenticeships.scot
SNIPEF Training Services Ltd: http://www.becomeaplumber.com/apprenticeshipsscotland.html