10 common misconceptions about apprenticeships

Damar Training logo

Apprenticeships are often misunderstood and as an apprenticeship provider we endeavour to tackle the misconceptions and promote the benefits to employers instead.

Let us look at some of the most common misconceptions and add some truth for you.

Misconception – Apprenticeships are only for young people.

Truth – Absolutely not, apprenticeships are for anyone aged 16 + and can be for newly recruited staff, existing staff, those wanting to change career pathways, school leavers and those returning to work.

Misconception – Apprenticeships are difficult to set up.

Truth – Your training provider will take care of most of the admin and will be able to guide you through setting up your apprenticeship service account.

Misconception – Having apprentices is an expensive exercise.

Truth – Apprentices are a cost-effective way to hire new talent and to train existing staff. Research shows that an employer will see a £2,000 bottom line boost on hiring an apprentice after wages/training costs. 

Misconception – Employers have to babysit apprentices.

Truth – Apprentices are no different to managing normal employees and in fact your training provider will be adding another layer of support by ensuring that the apprentice and their line manager are guided and supported with pastoral care and coaching. Your training provider will also support the apprentice with gathering evidence, recording off the job and ensuring that the apprentice is gaining new knowledge, skills and behaviours from the outset. 

Misconception – Apprenticeships are not as good as a degree.

Truth – This is now an outdated point of view as apprenticeships are a very viable alternative to going to university. The apprentice gains real live experience that you cannot get from the classroom and 85% of employers recommend apprenticeships as the vehicle for up-skilling and developing talent within as well as for their new recruits.

Misconception – The apprentice will spend a lot of time away from the workplace.

Truth - Off-the-job training must be away from the apprentice’s productive job role and must teach new knowledge, skills and behaviours relevant to the specific apprenticeship. The full-time apprentice will need to spend at least 6 hours of training a week. It can be delivered flexibly, as a part of each day, one day per week, or in blocks. Activities may include workshops, role playing or simulations, lectures, shadowing and mentoring, on-line learning and writing assignments or projects.

Misconception – Employers do not retain employees once they have completed their apprenticeship.

Truth - Apprenticeships often result in a high level of loyalty among employees. Apprentices tend to remain with their employers after completing their training, reducing recruitment and on-boarding costs.

Misconception – Apprenticeships are set at lower levels than degrees.

Truth – Many apprenticeships exist now up to degree level and beyond (MBAs are not funded as part of the apprenticeship but employer can pay the extra funds for the apprentice to achieve this after the apprenticeship).

Misconception –Non-levy employers have a limit on how many apprentices they can enrol.

Truth – Since 3rd April 2023, this restriction was lifted, and now non-levy employers can recruit or up-skill as many as they need to fill skills gaps and grow their businesses. They are still required to pay 5% contribution to the cost with government paying 95%.

Misconception – Levy employers who have run out of levy funds cannot enrol any more apprentices.

Truth – When an employer has used up all their funds in their digital account, they can revert to the co-investment model like non-levy employers. This means they pay 5% contribution to the cost with the government paying 95%.

Learn more at Damar Training - Business and professional apprenticeships 

Or email Debi Sharkie

Follow Damar at www.linkedin.com/company/damar-limited