Employers can claim the government’s promised £1,000 for a completed traineeship work placement using an online form from today.

The form is now live on the gov.uk website and it is understood claims will be checked against the monthly Individualised Learner Record data submitted by traineeship providers before payments are made.

The £1,000 payment is limited to 10 trainees for each of the nine regions in England, per employer.

The Department for Education confirmed the £1,000 can only be claimed for work placements that were “started and completed” from 1 September 2020 to 31 July 2021.

The employer bonuses were first announced back in July in chancellor Rishi Sunak’s Plan for Jobs and as part of a £111 million funding injection into the traineeships programme, in a bid to triple the number of starts in the current academic year, to the end July 2021.

Commenting on the launch of the incentive payment claim form, Sunak said: “My number one priority is to support, protect and create jobs, which is why for the first time ever we’re giving businesses £1,000 to cover the cost of trainee work experience, because we know that traineeships are a proven way to give young people the skills and opportunity, they need to be ready for work.

“We also know that our young people will be vital in the national effort to recover from the pandemic, so I urge businesses to seize this opportunity and help us harness the talent of our young people and offer hope for the future.”

Keegan added: “We’re pulling out all the stops to help young people get the skills and confidence they need to progress. This cash boost will help employers of all sizes provide more traineeship opportunities, to invest in their workforce so they can rebuild and grow, giving young people a vital route to start their apprenticeship journey, get their first job or go on to further study.”

Introduced as a flagship pre-employability programme in 2013, traineeships are eligible for 16 to 24-year-olds and training providers are funded by the Education and Skills Funding Agency to deliver pre-employment training and arrange work placements from six weeks to twelve months.

Starts on the scheme hit a high of 24,100 in 2015/16 but have been dropping since and reached just 12,100 in 2019/20.

A £65 million tender to expand the number of 19 to 24 traineeships was recently run and outcomes were revealed last week – the funding of which is hoped to fund an additional 20,000 starts between 1 February and 31 July 2021.

In a bid to triple starts, growth funding has also been handed to providers to deliver more 16-to-19 traineeships, the funding rate for the 19-to-24s has risen from £970 to £1,500 and the eligibility of the scheme has been expanded to include people that already hold full level 3 qualifications, such as A-levels.

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