Apprenticeships: the financial facts

Apprenticeships are a fantastic way to get into the world of work and take the first step on the career ladder. For school and college leavers, they offer so much - a direction to head in, a salary, an array of qualifications and plenty of support along the way.

For young people who want to do well and embark on a career, but do not want the debt of a university degree, apprenticeships are the ideal path. University means tuition fees, which could be as much as £9,250 per year, plus the additional accommodation and living costs if you choose a uni away from home. Although you can get loans for all of this, you may be paying it off for the rest of your life!

An apprenticeship won’t cost you a penny! They’re 95-100% Government funded (depending on the size of the company and the age of the apprentice) and any shortfall is covered by the employer. This is thanks to the Apprenticeship Levy (and Co-funded models for smaller businesses), which was introduced in 2017 to create national funding for apprenticeships and to enable businesses of all sizes to implement their own apprenticeship programmes.

All apprenticeships come with a salary, so the phrase ‘earn while you learn’ is extremely accurate! You’ll be earning a salary, whilst being trained in an area you’re interested in, gaining a range of qualifications and all with the high likelihood of a secure job at the end. Employers often become invested in their apprentices and are keen to help them progress, meaning you could start climbing the ranks soon after completing your apprenticeship!

How much do apprenticeships pay? 

This depends on many things; your age, what year of the apprenticeship you’re in and what your employer chooses to pay you. Some apprenticeships pay more than others so it’s worth doing your research as to what roles and salaries are on offer before you apply. All employers have to pay at least the National Minimum Wage for apprentices.

  • For apprentices aged 16 to 18 or 19 or over and in your first year, the rate is £4.81 per hour

  • For 18-20 year-olds it’s £6.83 per hour

  • For 21-22 year-olds it’s £9.18 per hour

  • For 23 years and over it’s £9.50 per hour

The average salary of an apprentice is £19,323 per year. Salaries may vary depending on things like the location, experience or type or level of apprenticeship. Depending on an apprentice's education level, there are four types of apprenticeships available:

  • Intermediate apprenticeships: Level 2 qualification; this is the first level of apprenticeship and may have some GCSE requirements.

  • Advanced apprenticeships: Level 3 qualification that may require you to have passed at least five GCSEs or have successfully completed an intermediate apprenticeship.

  • Higher apprenticeships: Level 4 qualification, which typically is the equivalent of the first year of a Bachelor's degree. These could take up to four years to complete and may require you to complete an advanced apprenticeship first.

  • Degree apprenticeships: Level 6+ qualification that allows you to earn your Bachelor's degree while you're working. It's common for some universities to run these apprenticeships, which will take three to six years to complete.

Do apprenticeship wages rise?

Yes, your wages will rise as you move up through the age brackets or upon completion of your first year. You may also receive pay rises at your employer’s discretion, should they choose to do so. This is sometimes done as a reward for hard work and for doing well within the business.

What are the highest paying apprenticeships?

There is no rule as to what apprenticeship will pay the most, as a lot of depends on the individual employer, but the national average salaries of the following apprenticeships are recorded as the highest:

  1. Management apprenticeship - £26,325 per year

  2. Engineering apprenticeship - £23,199 per year

  3. Electrician apprentice - £17,304 per year

  4. Carpentry apprenticeship - £15,566 per year

  5. IT apprenticeship - £12,090 per year

Incentive for businesses taking on young apprentices

Employers and training providers could get £1,000 each for taking on an apprentice who is either:

  • aged 16 to 18 years old or

  • aged 19 to 25 years old and has an education, health and care (EHC) plan or has been in the care of their local authority

This may mean that employers are more keen to take on a younger apprentice in order to qualify for this incentive; this therefore could result in even more great opportunities for school and college leavers at a time when youth unemployment is high.

Why choose PETA for your apprenticeship?

  • We offer hundreds of apprenticeships every year in the areas of business administration, customer services, sales, digital marketing, management and leadership, IT, networking and engineering.

  • We partner with industry-leading employers, providing great career opportunities.

  • Our tutors and trainers are highly skilled experts in their fields, ready to guide you through the programme smoothly.

  • Our team is on hand to help whenever you need them - you can rely on us!

  • We have a great deal of apprenticeship experience, making us best placed for continued success.

  • We work closely with the awarding bodies to ensure our training is as effective as it can possibly be.

  • Our facilities are modern and purpose built to provide the ideal environment for your training.

Find out more about our apprenticeship programmes, browse our apprenticeship vacancies or get in touch for more info…





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