The 2021 WBTC 100 Apprentice Challenge is a new initiative designed to build back apprenticeship numbers in Berkshire and provide a helping hand to local small-medium sized employers.
It’s been widely reported that many big organisations are not taking full advantage of their levy to fund and train new apprentices. More so, many big organisations are not aware they can donate up to 25% of their unspent levy funds to smaller employers.
In response to this, WBTC is targeting levy paying businesses to pledge enough of their unused funds to support 100 new local apprenticeships. The challenge benefits the local economy, communities and aligns with many larger organisations’ corporate & social responsibility agendas. It is an enormous opportunity to make a meaningful difference to apprenticeships.
Image above: MP for Newbury Laura Farris WBTC Chairman Anthony Bravo at the 100 Apprenticeship Challenge launch in November 2021.
BENEFITS OF THE SCHEME
- For the donor organisation
The donor organisation wins from the positive publicity arising from a donation. Their unused levy funds, instead of going back to the exchequer can directly support local smaller organisations’ apprentice programmes. Donors can select the location, sector and type of programme they want to support through an existing online portal. They can even specifically transfer to a chosen company – for example a business in their supply chain. WBTC promote the donor organisation as an official 100 Apprentice Challenge Champion with all the positive publicity that comes with such a title. For some it will help them meet their corporate & social responsibility agendas.
- For the smaller employer
The smaller employer beneficiary wins because they can access the donor funds and be exempt from the usual cash contribution they’re expect to make towards training costs. This will save them some cost on the significant investment involved in training apprentices. WBTC help them to apply for the funds and build a direct relationship with the donating organisation.
- For the potential apprentice(s)
The applicant apprentices win as more high quality local opportunities are generated. The very smallest employers are most likely to employ an apprentice aged 16-18. It is these SMEs that need as much help as they can get right now to continue that investment.
CURRENT EMPLOYERS ON BOARD
- Thatcham Research
- H Youngs Holdings
- West Berkshire Council
It is easy for Levy paying employers to donate funds and WBTC are on hand to help make this happen.
WBTC colleagues Rachel Eaves and Karen Dodd are on hand to guide donors and beneficiaries through the process to make it as easy as possible.