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Navigating the Costs and Funding of Apprenticeships: A Guide for Businesses

By Megan Pledger, Business Development Executive

As a Business Development Executive at The College of Animal Welfare and CAW Business School I often engage with businesses who are keen to understand the financial implications of taking on an apprentice. In this blog post, I’ll guide you through the costs and funding associated with apprenticeships, highlighting how they can be a cost-effective solution for your business.

Understanding the Costs: The cost of hiring an apprentice includes their salary and the cost of training. As an employer, you’re required to pay at least the National Minimum Wage for apprentices, which is often lower than regular employees due to the training component of the apprenticeship. However, at CAW, we encourage fair remuneration to reflect the value apprentices bring to your business. Awarding body enrolment and exam fees and books will also need to be funded by the employer. Apprenticeship programmes require employers to pay apprentices for the time they are learning. You will hear this called off-the-job training. Attendance at classes, revision and all the training and support you give an apprentice can be included.

Funding and Incentives: The UK government offers significant funding to support apprenticeships. If your annual payroll cost is less than £3 million, you only pay 5% towards the cost of training and assessment, with the government covering the rest. For larger employers with a payroll cost over £3 million, funding is accessed through the Apprenticeship Levy. Furthermore, there are additional incentives for hiring certain groups, such as younger apprentices or those from disadvantaged backgrounds.

Training Costs: Training costs vary depending on the apprenticeship. At CAW, we offer a range of apprenticeships in fields such as Animal Care, Dog Grooming, Accounting and Leadership and Management. We ensure high-quality training that is cost-effective. 

Return on Investment: While there are costs associated with apprenticeships, the return on investment can be significant. Apprentices can fill crucial skills gaps, bring fresh ideas, and often show a high level of loyalty to companies that invest in their development. Additionally, CAW’s apprenticeships are designed to ensure apprentices quickly become productive members of your team.

Support from CAW: At CAW, we offer comprehensive support to businesses taking on apprentices. This includes assistance with navigating funding options, understanding apprenticeship standards, and help matching the right apprentice to your business needs.

Conclusion: Apprenticeships are an excellent way to grow your business and develop a skilled workforce. The costs are offset by substantial government funding and the long-term benefits of nurturing home-grown talent. CAW is committed to supporting businesses throughout this journey, ensuring a mutually beneficial apprenticeship experience.

Contact Us: If you’re interested in exploring apprenticeship opportunities with CAW, please get in touch. We’re here to help you find the perfect apprentice and make the most of the funding and support available.

You can get in touch via email at or by phone at 01480 422060