Enterprise Bill aims to protect apprenticeship sector

The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) has set new guidelines which aim to increase the amount of apprenticeships in the public sector, and to make apprentice a protected term.


Improving apprenticeships

On September 17th, the department released an enterprise bill which aims to improve the government’s relationship with UK firms, increase business prosperity and create a number of new jobs, including apprenticeships.

The Enterprise Bill includes a measure to prevent people passing off poor quality training schemes as ‘apprenticeships’. In late July, BIS took the decision to crack down on the number of ‘fake apprenticeships’ created by rogue training providers.

The changes made to the sector in the bill aim to assist David Cameron’s plans to create 3 million apprenticeships by 2020. The new measures will make it an offence for any person, business, or training provider, to provide or offer a course or training as an apprenticeship if it’s not legally deemed an apprenticeship.

By enforcing these rule changes, BIS hopes to strengthen and protect the reputation of the apprenticeship brand for all and to enable all types of businesses to offer apprenticeships in the UK.


Public sector apprenticeships

Government officials also want to ensure that the public sector plays its part in the hiring of more apprentices within the next five years.

The Bill grants the secretary of state with the power to set targets for all public bodies in England in relation to the number of apprentices that they hire. The rule excludes public bodies which hire less than 250 people.

‘‘The government is committed to making sure the UK continues to be the best place in Europe to do business,’’ said Sajid Javid, the government’s business secretary.

‘‘The Enterprise Bill will help do just that with measures to cut red tape, protect high-quality apprenticeships and deal with unfair payment practices hitting small firms. I firmly believe that to reap rewards for working people across the country we need to get behind our great British businesses.’’