Firms relabelling low-skilled jobs as apprenticeships, says report

Quick meals giants, espresso retailers and retailers are relabelling low-skilled jobs as apprenticeships, a report says.

The examine by suppose tank Reform says many corporations have rebranded current roles after being obliged to contribute money to on-the-job coaching.

The examine says 40% of the apprenticeship requirements permitted don’t meet conventional definition of such expert on-the-job coaching programs.

The federal government says “high quality” is on the coronary heart of its apprenticeship reforms.

As a part of the modifications, it launched an apprenticeship levy on organisations paying greater than £3m in salaries a yr.

They should pay zero.5% of their wages whole right into a “digital account” held by HMRC.

They then “spend” these contributions on apprenticeship coaching delivered by registered suppliers. They will additionally get again as much as 90% of the price of coaching.

‘Low-wage roles’

The report says: “As a part of the federal government’s wider package deal of reforms to apprenticeships, teams of employers got here collectively to write down the brand new ‘apprenticeship requirements’.

“Some used this chance to generate high-quality requirements, however others seem like merely rebadging low-quality, low-skill and sometimes low-wage roles as ‘apprenticeships’ as a substitute.”

In 2013, the federal government mentioned apprenticeships needed to be expert roles, requiring substantial and sustained coaching of at the very least 12 months, resulting in full competency and will present the apprentice with transferrable expertise in an occupation.

However a fast look on the authorities’s official apprenticeships web site reveals many excessive road corporations promoting for apprentices in what seem like unskilled roles.

For instance, KFC is promoting for an apprentice hospitality workforce member.

The advert describes the apprenticeship as “a structured, learner and employer-focused growth programme designed to create alternatives for lifelong data, expertise and behaviours”.

However the position is described as cooking “fries” and different merchandise and serving clients entrance of home, or cooking and assembling KFC merchandise, whereas sustaining clear, sanitary working circumstances.

It says coaching is predicated round day-to-day duties, however will even contain one-to-one interactions with a specialised coach each 4 to 6 weeks.

KFC mentioned the apprenticeship existed earlier than the levy was launched and met all the important thing requirements, and that the agency paid greater than the minimal apprenticeship charges.

‘Substantial coaching’

Espresso large Starbucks is promoting for hospitality workforce member barista apprentices on the official web site to make and serve espresso in its branches.

However from on-line chat rooms it seems that individuals often get skilled for a few weeks earlier than starting work.

Starbucks is but to reply to the BBC’s request for a remark.

Tom Richmond, senior analysis fellow at Reform, mentioned service sector apprenticeships might be of top quality, however many of those being permitted didn’t match the normal or worldwide definition of an apprenticeship.

He in contrast British apprenticeship requirements with these for the hospitality sector in Germany which, he mentioned, cowl a wider vary of expertise and competencies.

A Division for Training spokeswoman mentioned it needed to see individuals of all ages and backgrounds getting the superb coaching they want to achieve a variety of jobs, and that this was why it was altering the apprenticeship system.

She added: “Our reforms have basically modified what apprenticeships are, as we made it a requirement that each one apprenticeships have to be actual paid jobs lasting for no less than 12 months, with at the very least 20% off-the-job coaching.

“High quality is on the coronary heart of our reforms, and the apprenticeship levy is a crucial a part of that – creating sustainable funding in expertise coaching.

“We’re happy to see a rise in individuals beginning our new, higher-quality apprenticeship requirements in a complete vary of industries from nuclear to style, legislation, banking and defence.

“These apprenticeships are designed by employers themselves, to present individuals and companies the abilities they really want.”

Printed at Thu, 12 Apr 2018 23:05:30 +0000