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Your guide to the Kickstart Scheme

As part of the ‘Plan for Jobs’, the government announced a £2 billion fund to create new job placements for young people. Employers can get six months’ fully-funded wages to employ 16-24 year olds.

Chancellor Rishi Sunak launched Kickstart in September 2020. While coronavirus restrictions have made it harder for young people and employers to get started, this situation is expected to improve over the coming months as restrictions ease.

Here’s our guide to the scheme – and how your organisation can benefit.

What is the Kickstart Scheme?

The Kickstart Scheme provides funding to create new job placements for 16 to 24 year olds on Universal Credit.

The scheme aims to help young people take the first step on their career ladder.

Employers of all sizes can benefit from joining the scheme – a previous requirement to create a minimum of 30 vacancies has been removed.

To ensure all job placements are high quality, the government will apply rigorous checks on training support and finances.

What’s in it for employers?

Employers of all sizes can apply for funding which covers:

  • 100% of the National Minimum Wage (or the National Living Wage depending on the age of the participant) for 25 hours per week for a total of six months
  • associated employer National Insurance contributions
  • employer minimum automatic enrolment contributions

The idea is that employers will be able to access a large pool of young people with potential, ready for an opportunity.

Employers can spread the start date of job placements up to the end of December 2021.

Job placements created with Kickstart funding must not replace existing or planned vacancies or cause existing employees or contractors to lose or reduce their employment.

The roles should not require people to undertake extensive training before they begin.

Further funding is available for training and support so that young people on the scheme can get a job in the future.

Read more here

Where can I get local support?

You can apply for a Kickstart Scheme grant by applying online yourself or by getting help from an approved Kickstart intermediary.

Leicester-based training provider Business to Business UK is supporting young people and employers to get the maximum benefit from the Kickstart Scheme.

The firm will advise and support employers to provide a mutually beneficial, high quality, incentivised work opportunity alongside relevant training from which young people can progress further with the original employer or with other employers in their sector.

Read more here

Lincoln College is also working as a Kickstart Gateway to help employers get maximum potential from the scheme.

The college will write and submit your application, help you with placement adverts and send them to DWP to be matched against their database of jobseekers.

Lincoln College will put candidates through its pre-employment course and offer training throughout their placement. After five months, if you don’t want to offer the young person a job, the college will start working with them on job seeking skills and careers guidance to help them find another position.

Read more here

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