AELP responds to the Chancellor’s Spending Review announcements on skills

The Treasury has announced the employment, apprenticeship and skills measures in the Spending Review in advance of the Chancellor making his statement on 25 November 2020. They include a DWP 3-year £2.9bn Restart scheme “to help more than one million unemployed people look for work. Individuals out of work for over 12 months will be provided with regular, intensive jobs support tailored to their circumstances”. This would appear to be similar to previous DWP programmes such as New Deal and the Work Programme.

The main section on skills and jobs in the Treasury press release (see below) reads:

“[The Chancellor] will also confirm funding for the next stage of his Plan for Jobs – including £1.6 bn for the landmark Kickstart scheme in 2021/22, which will see the creation of up to 250,000 government-subsidised jobs for young people. The apprenticeship hiring incentive that launched in August will also be extended to 31 March 2021, offering employers up to £2,000 for every new apprentice they hire. There will also be a £375m package to support skills which includes £138m of new funding to deliver the Prime Minister’s Lifetime Skills Guarantee and £127m to continue the Plan for Jobs skills measures.”

The notes to editors in the release confirm that the apprenticeship incentive remains £1,500 for apprentices aged 25 and over.

Responding to these announcements, Association of Employment and Learning Providers managing director Jane Hickie said:

“The extension of the apprenticeship hiring incentive could be an important boost to the recovery efforts, especially among smaller businesses where the first set of incentives has proved particularly attractive. Retraining adults affected by the pandemic’s impact is absolutely essential and so new funding for the Lifetime Skills Guarantee will support key sectors. Training providers across the country are ready to play a key role in ensuring that the maximum number of employers, young apprentices and existing members of the workforce benefit from these welcome measures.”

A copy of the Treasury’s press release is reproduced as follows:

HM Treasury - EMBARGOED TUESDAY 24 NOVEMBER 1800: SPENDING REVIEW TO CREATE AND SUPPORT HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF JOBS

  • Chancellor to unveil Spending Review that will create and support hundreds of thousands of jobs across the UK.
  • Rishi Sunak also set to announce new three-year £2.9 billion Restart scheme to help one million unemployed people in their job search – alongside £1.4 billion of new funding to increase Job Centre Plus capacity.
  • Tens of billions of pounds of investment in infrastructure will support jobs and spur Britain’s recovery from coronavirus.

 

HUNDREDS of thousands of jobs will be created and supported through a multi-billion package of investment that is expected to be announced by the Chancellor at tomorrow’s (WED) Spending Review.

Building on his commitment to support, protect and create jobs, Rishi Sunak will also unveil the government’s new three-year £2.9bn Restart scheme to help more than one million unemployed people look for work. Individuals out of work for over 12 months will be provided with regular, intensive jobs support tailored to their circumstances.

He will also announce £1.4 bn of new funding to increase Job Centre Plus capacity so more people searching for work can get the support they need.

Mr Sunak, who will also announce tens of billions of pounds of capital investment to level up opportunity, drive growth and create jobs across the UK, said:

“My number one priority is to protect jobs and livelihoods across the UK.

“This Spending Review will ensure hundreds of thousands of jobs are supported and protected in the acute phase of this crisis and beyond with a multi-billion package of investment to ensure that no one is left without hope or opportunity”.

He will also confirm funding for the next stage of his Plan for Jobs – including £1.6 bn for the landmark Kickstart scheme in 2021/22, which will see the creation of up to 250,000 government-subsidised jobs for young people. The apprenticeship hiring incentive that launched in August will also be extended to 31 March 2021, offering employers up to £2,000 for every new apprentice they hire. There will also be a £375m package to support skills which includes £138m of new funding to deliver the Prime Minister’s Lifetime Skills Guarantee and £127m to continue the Plan for Jobs skills measures.

The ambitious plans for capital investment – which will include the building of new roads, houses, railways and cycle lanes – will support and create hundreds of thousands of jobs across the country, with the Prime Minster already pledging up to 250,000 highly skilled green jobs as part of this ten-point plan for a green industrial revolution.

This Spending Review follows nine months of unprecedented support for businesses and individuals including helping to pay the wages of people in 9.6 million jobs across the country through the Coronavirus Jobs Retention Scheme (CJRS) – which has been extended until March 2021 – and supporting the livelihoods of 2.6 million self-employed workers.


Notes to editors


This Spending Review will announce the following new DWP funding to support jobs:

  • £400m investment in 2021-22, the first step in the £2.9 billion three-year Restart programme.
  • £1.4bn to build on the Plan for Jobs commitment to increase capacity in Job Centre Plus and double the number of work coaches.

 

The £375m skills package will start delivering on the Prime Minister’s Lifetime Skills Guarantee, with £138m to fund in-demand technical courses equivalent to A levels, and expanding the employer-led boot camp training model. Also includes £127m funding to continue skills measures in the Plan for Jobs into 2021-22, investing in sector-based work academies and traineeships, and investing in the National Careers Service to enable more adults to access high quality careers advice.

The apprenticeship incentive scheme has been extended to 31 March 2021 and pays employers £2,000 for apprentices hired aged under 25 and £1,500 for those aged 25 and over.

Employment programmes have a proven track record of delivering positive fiscal return. For example, a recently published cost benefit analysis of the Work Programme estimates an Exchequer impact of £3.21 per £1 spent over four years for participants aged 25 and over and unemployed for a year. Using the evaluation’s average additional days in work figures, we would estimate 30% of those supported by the programme found work after two years, compared to 23% of those in a comparison group. Based on learnings from this and other previous employment programmes, the new Restart programme has taken into account the following improvements:

  • building strong customer service standards to ensure customers receive the intensive support they need;
  • placing customer satisfaction at the core of the programme, by measuring customer satisfaction as part of performance management; and
  • taking advantage of the wrap-around support offered by UC, with on-going support from work coaches, and creating 3-way channels of communication between providers, DWP and claimants.

 

AELP may choose to comment further if the Chancellor announces more relevant measures in his Spending Review statement.

 

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