What are traineeships?

Traineeships are a national programme providing 16 to 24-year-olds with the skills and work experience needed to progress.

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In January 2021, employers began claiming the promised government incentive of £1,000 for a completed traineeship work placement using an online form.  Employers can claim the bonus for up to 10 trainees per company.  This scheme was first announced in July 2020 as part of a £111 million funding injection into traineeships.  The hope is to triple the number of traineeship starts in the current academic year. 

With Covid-19 affecting the British economy more than any other major economy, the government is working hard to help the UK ‘bounce back’.  Unemployment rates rose by 1.6% in the past year and are expected to increase further.  It is expected that young people will be one of the groups worst hit.  The government hopes to combat some of the effects of the pandemic by investing in education.  Traineeships will, therefore, play a critical role in the recovery of the UK economy post pandemic. 

What are traineeships?

Traineeships are a national programme which provides 16 to 24-year-olds resident in England with the skills and work experience needed to progress into apprenticeships, employment, and further learning.  The traineeship core offer includes the following mandatory elements:

  • Work-preparation training.
  • Substantial work-placement element.
  • English, maths, ESOL or digital skills as necessary.

Providers can also offer a flexible element, including appropriate technical qualifications and skills required by the local labour market that will help the learner move into work or remove a barrier to them entering work.

Traineeships can last from 6 weeks up to 1 year, though most will last for less than 6 months.  The aim of traineeships is to secure young people’s progression to a positive outcome as quickly as possible.  They are aimed at young people who are not ready to enter work or an apprenticeship without the preparation that the traineeship provides.  A traineeship will be considered achieved when the learner progresses to one of the defined outcomes.

Traineeships often act as a feeder course to apprenticeships.  In 2019, 75% of trainees started an apprenticeship, employment or further learning within 12 months of the traineeship.

An individual is eligible for a traineeship if they:

  • Are eligible to work in England.
  • Have little or no work experience but are motivated to work.
  • Aged 16 to 24 (or 25 with an EHC plan) and qualified up to level 3.

How do traineeships benefit businesses?

Reduce costs

Traineeships are free to businesses.  As a government funded programme, a traineeship offers employers an extra set of hands for no additional cost.  Employers may, however, wish to support their trainees by paying their expenses.

A traineeship also helps to combat unwanted recruitment costs.  Not only does the recruitment process cost time and money but the training of young talent can also be expensive.  Traineeships ensure young people can be brought into business without extra cost.  Employers will also be able to avoid the hassle of sifting through too many CVs when taking on trainees.

Develop young talent

Traineeships provide the opportunity to bring young, talented people into businesses.  If the trainee is a good fit for a business, they could then take them on as an apprentice or in a starter role.  As the trainee will be trained by the business to meet their specific needs, this will increase the productivity of the business.

Provide flexibility

As traineeships usually operate on a part-time basis, the programmes can be run at times that suit both the business and the trainee.  This may be ideal for seasonal businesses as trainees can provide help when it is most needed. 

Offer mentoring opportunities to staff

Traineeships provide the perfect opportunity to challenge staff with a mentoring role.  Providing guidance to trainees can help staff develop their management and interpersonal skills. Mentoring can also help motivate staff and create a real sense of community.  This, in turn, can help raise morale, engagement and productivity within business.

Why Bud?

Bud was originally built to support the delivery of apprenticeships.  In 2020, we expanded our delivery and now cater for all courses funded by the AEB as well as other forms of vocational training including traineeships, T Levels and community learning. 

Bud is the most intuitive training management platform available.  We provide everything you need to support you with the three core areas of traineeship delivery: learning, managing and funding. 

Jesse Johnson, Sales Director at Bud said “Bud helps training providers deliver traineeships by ensuring learners can access their learning plan at any time, in any place and on their terms.  The Bud platform also collates evidence of every interaction and learning experience so that providers can be confident in their funding claims.  If a trainee secures an apprenticeship, the Bud platform will have a portfolio of evidence that can be drawn upon during the apprenticeship.

Traineeships are designed to help young people develop the skills they would not otherwise have been able to obtain.  These programmes represent a fantastic opportunity for both young people and employers.”


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