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Update to the Kickstart Scheme

2 September 2020
Gavin Hooker
COVID-19, Accounting & Compliance, Payroll, People

In the Chancellor’s Summer Economic Update he announced his plan for jobs. There were not only changes for the apprenticeship scheme but also the launch of a new Kickstart scheme.

Employers can use the Kickstart Scheme to create new 6-month job placements for young people who are currently on Universal Credit and at risk of long-term unemployment. The job placements should support the participants to develop the skills and experience they need to find work after completing the scheme. The first placements are likely to be available from November 2020.

Kickstart is not an apprenticeship, but participants may move on to an apprenticeship at any time during, or after their job placement.

What funding is available?

Funding is available for 100% of the relevant National Minimum Wage for 25 hours a week, plus associated employer National Insurance contributions and employer minimum automatic enrolment contributions. There is also £1,500 per job placement available for set up costs, support and training.

Funding is available following a successful application process.

Who can apply?

Any organisation, regardless of size, can apply for funding.

The job placements created with Kickstart funding must be new jobs. They must not:

  • Replace existing or planned vacancies
  • Cause existing employees or contractors to lose or reduce their employment

What is the application process?

Applications for the Kickstart Scheme must be for a minimum of 30 job placements. If you are unable to offer this many job placements, you can partner with other organisations to reach the minimum number – more details can be found here.

Each application should include how you will help the participants to develop their skills and experience, including:

  • Support to look for long-term work, including career advice and setting goals
  • Support with CV and interview preparation
  • Supporting the participant with basic skills, such as attendance, timekeeping and teamwork

Once a job placement is created, it can be taken up by a second person once the first successful applicant has completed their 6-month term.

You can submit your application online through the government’s portal. You will need to provide the following information during the application process:

  • The Companies House reference number or Charity Commission number
  • The organisation address and contact details
  • Details of the job placements and their location
  • Supporting information to show that the job placements are new jobs and meet the Kickstart Scheme criteria
  • Information about the support the organisation can give to develop employability skills of young people

What happens after you have applied?

Your application will be reviewed to check it meets the requirements of the Kickstart Scheme. It will then go to a panel for consideration. The government may contact you for further information as part of the application and they aim to respond to your application within 1 month.

If your application meets the requirements of the scheme, you will receive a letter with a grant agreement. This agreement will include what your company has agreed to provide, and how much funding you will receive from the Kickstart Scheme.

You must sign and return your grant agreement before any job placements can begin. You will need to provide job descriptions for each of the job placements you applied for. This should include what candidates need to do to apply for the job placement. You will then be contacted by the young people who have been matched to your job placement.

If your application is unsuccessful, you will be given feedback on why this has happened. You will be able to submit a new application with further information. There is no limit to the number of times you can apply for funding.

When do I receive the funding?

Candidates will apply for the job placements and you can choose who to employ.

You will only obtain funding if you appoint a young person that has been introduced through the Kickstart Scheme.

You will receive funding for the initial setup costs when you have confirmed the young person has started work, is enrolled on your payroll and is being paid through PAYE.

The DWP will use information from HMRC to check that the young person is still employed and will pay the grant in arrears.

We are here to support your business, if you have any concerns please call us or email Mark or Andrew.

The content in this blog is correct as at 02/09/2020. See terms and conditions.

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