The apprenticeship levy: get your facts right!

The apprenticeship reforms give employers more freedom and control over designing, choosing and paying for their apprenticeship training than ever before. The latest funding guide from government sets out exactly how the apprenticeship levy will work.

Here we have listed out our top 12 key facts for employers.

  • Employer designed new apprenticeship standards offer more role and sector relevant training.
  • New standards deliver greater flexibility than the previous framework structure.
  • Transition to End Point Assessment (EPA) introduces a critical requirement to track learner progress towards being end assessment ready.
  • Apprentices on the new standards will be allocated 20% of their working week to apprenticeship training and learning.
  • Functional skills will be funded outside of the levy, and these exams must be successfully completed before a learner accesses EPA.
  • The apprenticeship levy will be set at 0.5% of an employer’s pay bill.
  • It will be paid on any pay bill in excess of £3m per annum.
      • Non-levied employers will contribute just 10% of the total training costs for apprenticeship training.
      • Employers with less than 50 employees will not pay for training an apprentice aged 16-18* or 19-24 with an EHC Plan or care leaver.
  • Employers will have an annual allowance of £15,000 to offset against their levy payment.
  • The government will provide a 10% top up on all levy contributions for spending on apprenticeships in England.
  • The new funding system will come into effect in May 2017, in the meantime the current system remains in place.
  • Employers can access their apprenticeship funding once they have declared their liability to HMRC.
  • Funds can be accessed via the Digital Apprenticeship Service (DAS) to pay for apprenticeship training, and will automatically leave the employer’s digital account monthly.

If you have a levy query, email our dedicated apprenticeship levy team on

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