The Government Kickstart scheme - Pros and Cons for employers
In this blog I will explain what the Government Kickstart Scheme is and how it is benefiting employers and jobseekers. If you are an employer and are looking into applying for this funding, read on and I will uncover the pros and cons of getting involved.
What is the Kickstart Scheme?
The Kickstart Scheme is a new project launched by the government to help employers and young jobseekers alike by providing funding to create new job placements for 16 to 24 years olds who are currently on Universal Credit and are at risk of long-term unemployment.
The Scheme is not limited to large businesses, employers of all sizes can apply for the funding which covers:
- 100% of the National Minimum Wage (or the National Living Wage depending on the age of the participant) for 25 hours per week for a total of 6 months
- associated employer National Insurance contributions
- employer minimum automatic enrolment contributions
- £1,500 per new recruit towards recruitment, training and equipment
The Scheme is open to all employers; however, an application must be for a minimum of 30 job placements. However, Gov.UK does state that “If a single employer cannot provide this many job placements, they can contact a local authority, charity or trade body for help applying.”
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So, what are the positives and considerations when applying?
One of the most notable benefits of getting involved in the scheme is that the money will cover the cost of paying each new recruit’s wages at the national minimum wage. This will be covered for 25 hours a week, with additional associated national insurance and pension costs. There is also £1,500 per job available for set-up costs, support and training.
The scheme could support businesses in a wide range of industries. As an employer you must show that you are not using Kickstart to replace existing vacancies; you are required to explain how you will help potential candidates develop their skills and experience.
The scheme offers employers a fully funded programme for taking on young workers without enforcing their commitment to permanent roles.
Kickstart represents a real opportunity for small businesses hoping to expand while also trying to mitigate the risks of the ongoing uncertainties in the business environment.
The young person gets paid more than they would receiving the standard allowance on universal credit, which will more than likely encourage many to get involved and contribute to a business’s success.
- Little or no cost for extra employees to help you survive and thrive in these difficult times. Use this time and Government funding to invest in the future, you will be ready to thrive when we come out of the pandemic
- You can potentially train up the new recruits the way you want, usually no pre- conceived ideas and most likely more open to change and willing to learn
- You can take on new recruits anytime between now and December 2021 so you can increase the number of recruits as your business grows or when you need them
- You help young people move away from the reliance of the Government system and support your local communities
- No commit or requirement to recruit after the 6-month period should your business not have sufficient need to employ them full time
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The big downside for small businesses is that to apply directly for funding, employers must be able to offer at least 30 qualifying placements. Treasury officials argue that this is necessary for the scheme to be manageable and economically viable. But small business groups, including the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), have pointed out that many smaller organisations won’t be able to support anywhere near so many placements. You can however contact your local authorities, trade organisations or your local Chambers to help with finding suitable candidates for you.
Employers may not get a chance to interview or choose candidates and employers need to provide training as part of any payment given.
Additionally, given the people this scheme is designed to help, they are all likely to be new to the workforce (possibly just out of school, college or university). In some cases they will not have gained any prior work experience. If they have some experience, they may have been out of the working environment for some time and need training. Therefore, if planning to apply, do not forget to consider just how much time and resource you will need to put into mentoring, training, and supporting these people.
- Less candidates to choose from verse other recruitment methods
- If you want less than 30 employees, then you will have to recruit people from a recognised organisation that can apply on your behalf . There maybe some conditions attached to this. For example, an admin fee or training package you need to commit to and spend using some of your £1,500 per person allocation. Check these details out before choosing the organisation to apply on your behalf as it varies from region to region at the moment
- The recruit will have little or no experience so you need to consider how you will train and coach them. When considering the cost benefits, you need to consider and plan for how you will train and support your new recruits
- How are you going to train and support these less experienced people especially when they must work remotely or have limited time in the office to be trained by your staff?
As an employer how can you ensure you get the most benefit and value from this scheme?
Whilst some training maybe provided by the Government or the scheme there is no doubt that these new recruits will need additional training and a lot of support. Trying to run your business on limited staff during difficult times will be a challenge.
Take this pressure off your hands by considering the membership support package from Genzy Talent Academy. For £50 per month per person you can provide your new recruits support from experienced sales trainers and a supportive online community. Lives, zoom sessions competitions and recognition is all part of the support package, so your recruits feel supported, motivated, and inspired. The membership and support is specifically designed for Generation Z (Kickstart age group) so new recruits will feel motivated and engaged.
If you have new recruits or existing Generation Z staff (16-25 age group) how will you support them and keep them motivated especially if they are working remotely? If they are in a sales or customer related role find out here how you help them for less than £50 per month.
To find out more about the Genzy Talent Academy click the below: