What is an Apprenticeship?

Apprenticeships are training programmes that combine workplace experience with off the job learning. They a great way to develop relevant skills of a new employee or improve your existing workforce. The apprentice will be learning and gaining experience 'on the job' alongside off the job activities, such as assessments, research, personal reflection and more formal classroom activities. The requirement is that the apprenticeship is split 80% on the job and 20 % off the job training.

As an employer, you can become involved in apprenticeships by:

  • Recruiting an Apprentice
  • Up-skilling Existing Employees

The apprentice usually studies for a nationally recognised qualification at the same time as being employed for a minimum of one year and will be paid at least the National Minimum Wage for Apprentices for the duration of your apprenticeship programme. Existing staff can continue at their current salary and in their current position provided there is the capacity to learn the new skills required and that they are given the 20% off the job training.

Apprenticeships in the NHS cover both clinical and non-clinical qualifications and must meet nationally set standards. Apprenticeships cover all levels of study up to Masters (7) level. 


SME Businesses (some General Practices)

If your annual wage or pay bill is less than £3 million, you will have to make a small financial contribution (currently 5%) towards the training costs of your apprentice. The Government will pick up the remaining 95%. An alternative is to receive gifting from a larger business classified as a Levy paying organisation (see below). Gifting can cover 100% of the course costs. The employer then is just liable for the salary. 

Large Businesses

If your annual wage or pay bill is more than £3 million, you will be required by Government to invest as an Apprenticeship Levy. This will be collected by HMRC and kept in a digital account for you to use to pay for your apprentices’ training costs. This account can only be used to pay for the apprentices’ training costs and not for their salary or other employment costs. If you are unable to make full use of your Levy pot this can be gifted to other partners/organisations. If your Levy pot is insufficient to cover all the apprenticeships you require you can also receive gifting from another organisation. 

         Additional Government incentives

Government incentives are available for both non-Levy and Levy paying employers and vary dependant on Government priority areas. You can keep up to date with incentive schemes on Skills Funding Agency’s guidance documents.


The Training Hub can support with all apprenticeship queries so please do get in touch.

Helpful Links and Documentation

• News
• Toolkit
• Case Studies

Other resources on the Skills for Health Healthcare Apprenticeships site - Click here

For recommended Healthcare Apprenticeships click the image below...

There are many career pathways within Healthcare. Apprenticeships can be the best way to learn, experience and achieve the rewarding job you desire; so with training and support in the environment that you wish to progress, an apprenticeship is a good option.