The latest apprenticeship levy operational guidance is almost totally geared at explaining how it will work for the employers forced to pay it.

This is welcome, although 5,000 words on a single government web page seems a little rushed and half-hearted.

But colleges and independent training providers remain largely in the dark about how it will affect their funding from April next year.

There is promise of ‘provisional’ detail next month, but this is a poor state of affairs when you consider the change kicks in for all new apprenticeship starts four months before the end of the 2016/17 academic year.

Despite the admission there will be a phased implementation it strikes me that everyone, civil servants included, will wonder whether switching to the levy from April 2017 is over ambitious.

Few large scale government IT projects involving multiple departments start with a national roll-out, for good reason.

So let’s hope there is a plan B, which (whisper it) might even include the not so radical idea of undertaking a pilot…