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The levy is here

Since April 2017 the national apprenticeship programme has been expanded with the introduction of the apprenticeship levy. The aim of the levy is to fund 3 million new apprenticeships by 2020, encouraging businesses to employ apprentices or retrain their existing staff.

The apprenticeship levy is charged at 0.5% of the organisations payroll payable through the PAYE along with income tax and national insurance contributions.

Organisations will be exempt from the first £15k of the levy, which translates to the levy only being charged for payrolls in excess of £3 million per year, irrespective of if the organization employs apprentices. Therefore, the levy will apply to 2% of UK employers.

Public sector organisations will also be required contribute to the levy if their payroll meets the aforementioned criteria, and 2.32% of their staff must be apprentices.

Apprenticeship funding will increase to

£2.5 billion


of apprentice businesses say employing an apprentice increases productivity

The Levy Explained

Employers who are required to contribute to the levy will be allocated digital vouchers, these can be used to fund the training of their apprentices. The voucher system will only apply in England, and employers will have between 18 and 24 months to use the vouchers. For employers who wish to invest more in apprentices, the government is considering a further 'top-up' support system. The idea is that employers who commit to employing apprentices will be able to draw more from the levy than they contribute, through the 'top-up' payment system. The main aim of the levy is for investment to increase from UK employers for training apprentices and therefore the government is committed to supporting the long-term growth for UK employers.

Further information

• Think about how you could use apprenticeships in your organisation

• There is an updated guide for employers how you will pay the levy

• If you are a levy paying employer, you can register for the apprenticeship service to

  manage your apprenticeship programme.


workplaces in England offer apprenticeships.


  08454 309009

For a FREE consultation

Funding Bands

Apprenticeship funding currently takes into account a variety of elements based on the apprentice. As of April 2017, this will be changed and all funding will be based on the apprenticeship framework and will not change, regardless of the apprentice’s age, geographical location or prior qualifications, meaning you have a greater opportunity to hire individuals who meet your business needs. To discuss the banding of all apprenticeships, contact our Levy Management team.

                                                  Employer Levy Questionnaire

Please take our employer levy questionnaire to see how the new apprenticeship funding changes may affect your business.

Employer Levy Guide Website

Levy Example Calculations

Employer of 500 employees, each with a gross salary of £20,000

  • Wage bill: 500 x £20,000 – £10,000,000
  • Levy Sum: 0.5% x £10,000,000 = £50,000
  • Allowance: £50,000 – £15,000 = £35,000 annual levy payment

Employer of 300 employees, each with a gross salary of £20,000

  • Wage bill: 300 x £20,000 – £6,000,000
  • Levy Sum: 0.5% x £6,000,000 = £30,000
  • Allowance: £30,000 – £15,000 = £15,000 annual levy payment

Employer of 150 employees, each with a gross salary of £20,000

  • Wage bill: 150 x £20,000 – £3,000,000
  • Levy Sum: 0.5% x £3,000,000 = £15,000
  • Allowance: £15,000 – £15,000 = £0 annual levy payment

Employer of 100 employees, each with a gross salary of £20,000

  • Wage bill: 100 x £20,000 – £2,000,000
  • Levy Sum: 0.5% x £2,000,000 = £10,000
  • Allowance: £10,000 – £15,000 = £0 annual levy payment

Use the online tool for employers to estimate your levy contribution


Apprenticeship employer helpline

  08454 309009



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  Government-backed apprenticeships have rebooted our business  

Andy Turner

Director of Advanced Services at Cisco