New apprenticeship agency is set to attract diverse new talent
Creative Skillset attracts diverse new talent to the Creative Industries with new apprenticeship agency
Industry body Creative Skillset confirmed today (Thursday 25 Aug) at the Edinburgh International TV Festival that it is setting up a new Apprenticeship Training Agency. This move responds to industry leaders’ concerns that the Government’s ‘new Apprenticeship’ proposals aren’t suited to the majority of TV industry employers.
An apprenticeship is a great route into an exciting creative industry career – and our industries have a strong track-record of providing entry-level opportunities which combine on-the-job experience and off-the-job training. Our sectors want to be inclusive and attract diverse talent. But employers have told Creative Skillset that changes are needed to ensure new Apprenticeships deliver the skills our industries need across the supply chain."
Seetha Kumar, CEO, Creative Skillset
Kumar comments: "There’s particular concern that smaller organisations involved in TV production can’t employ or train a new Apprentice for the minimum time required under the Government’s proposals. So Creative Skillset is working with industry partners to set up an Apprenticeship Training Agency (ATA), employing Apprentices who can work on short-term production projects."
The Apprentice Agency will be a game-changer
"Our talent-hungry industry will attract the diverse new blood it needs, production companies will have access to motivated Apprentices, and our industry will get value back from the Apprenticeship Levy which our larger employers will have to pay."
Creative Skillset is recommending other changes to get these Apprenticeships off to a flying start – including allocating Levy funds to help develop new Apprenticeship standards and speeding up the process for developing standards. Said Kumar: "We want to get diverse new talent into our industries as quickly as possible, so a TV Apprenticeship standard shouldn’t take longer to develop than it takes to make an average TV programme. We’re ready to pilot a fast-track new Apprenticeship standard – getting it from industry, with a need for implementation in around six months. We’ll be looking for the Minister’s support on this."
Listening to industry leaders
"And industry leaders are telling us that they want their Levy contributions pooled for re-investment across our sectors, and for digital training vouchers to be available for a wide range of skills development opportunities."
Kumar added: "The Government has undergone major changes over the last year, but new Apprenticeships remain pretty much as they were originally proposed. These Apprenticeships may work for other sectors, like manufacturing – but they’re not suited to project-based, freelance-dominated industries like TV and film. Creative Skillset and its industry partners already invest voluntary High End TV and film levy income in effective, targeted skills development – so we’re well-placed to advise on how to make new Apprenticeships work. If the Government’s prepared to respond to creative industry advice, we can help deliver improved productivity and employability – including skills development opportunities for disadvantaged groups."
 New Apprenticeships will be funded by a statutory paybill Levy. All businesses with an annual paybill of at least £3m will pay a 0.5% Levy – although there’s a £15k offset.
 From May 2017, organisations who’ve paid the Levy can use digital vouchers – funded by the Levy pot – to cover their Apprentices’ off-the-job training. Employers with smaller paybills will have 90% of their Apprenticeship training costs covered – and there will be additional support for younger Apprentices and Apprentices with particular education, healthcare or learning needs.
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About Creative Skillset
Creative Skillset works with the UK’s screen-based Creative Industries to find and develop skills and talent, from classroom to boardroom.
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