One of the biggest perks about being an apprentice is that you’re earning while you learn brand new skills. Apprentice Eye is here to tell you everything you need to know about an apprenticeship wage.
Apprenticeship wages are increasing
For a number of years, the amount of money that apprentices earn has been a sensitive subject within government.
The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) has slowly been increasing wages for apprentices. In October 2014, the department raised the wage by 5p to £2.73 an hour, but this failed to satisfy industry supporters.
From October 2015, the apprenticeship sector will experience its biggest ever rise in wages, increasing from £2.73 an hour to £3.30. This will happen alongside the increase in the adult minimum wage, which is set to grow from £6.50 to £6.70 an hour.
Not all apprenticeships stick to the national minimum wage
If earning £3.30 an hour still doesn’t seem like enough for you to live on, don’t fret. Employers usually pay their apprentices a wage much higher than this. AllAboutSchoolLeavers estimates that on average, apprentices earn £170 a week.
If you’re 19 or older, your wage is definitely set to increase. After your first year as an apprentice, your employer is obligated to pay you the national minimum wage, which is £5.30 for those aged 18 to 20.
You can get additional funding
For those who are earning less than the national minimum wage, there are a number of funding options available to help you earn while you learn.
The Creative Employment Programme is a £15m initiative that provides part wage grants to employers who create new apprenticeship and internship job opportunities for young unemployed people aged 16-24 in England. You could see your wage increased through the scheme.
If you work for a small and medium-sized business that has just started to take on apprentices, then you could receive a cash windfall. SMEs which fit these criteria can receive an apprenticeship grant for employers from the Skills Funding Agency (SFA).