Employing an apprentice

An apprenticeship is a job completed while training. It allows people to earn while they learn. Apprentices receive a recognised qualification to develop their future career.

You can be an apprentice if you are:

  • over 16
  • living in England
  • not in full-time education

Depending on your business, most apprenticeships will:

  • take between 1 and 4 years to complete
  • have at least 30 hours a week employment
  • pay at least minimum wage, as well as annual leave and bank holiday entitlement
  • require 20% of time spent studying and training (paid)

For details of pay and working hours, see the Apprenticeship Funding document.

How could an apprentice help my business?

An apprentice usually starts at a beginner's level. By the end of their course, they can perform a range of duties specific to your business at an industry-standard level.

Training providers work with employers to ensure that the training meets the needs of the qualification and the employment needs of your business. The apprentice receives practical, job specific skills which they can use as they learn.

Finding an apprentice

Your apprentice will be an employee in your business. It is often useful to start by drafting a job description. You will need to keep in mind that you are asking someone to learn this role and develop their skills. An apprentice is a trainee, not an experienced professional.

The job description helps the training provider to recommend a framework and standard. Training is available for apprenticeships at intermediate, advanced and higher (degree) levels. For more useful information please visit the GOV.UK website.

Our apprenticeship advisors are available to:

  • advise on job descriptions and show you examples
  • help to find a training provider that runs courses suitable for your business
  • advise on employment contracts and show you examples

Job description

A Job description must state the following:

"This is an apprenticeship role and will require the post holder to attend training as designated by the training provider, and complete assignments required by the framework. The apprentice will be given time off to attend college"

Apprenticeship contracts

Small Businesses