Last updated 31 July 2020
Implications for employers
The Chancellor has introduced a new Plan for Jobs 2020, this includes a Job Retention Scheme Bonus and new employment training opportunities for the under 25s. The current Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme will end in October, emphasising a shift in support for employers to enable employees to return to work.
A Job Retention Bonus will be introduced to help firms keep furloughed employees. UK employers will receive a one-off bonus of £1,000 for each furloughed employee who is still employed on 31 January 2021 and who earns at least £520 per month (lower earnings limit). Payments will be made from February 2021 and further details have been announced which can be found here . Employers are still able to take up the Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme if employees fall ill due to the virus, our previous article covers the guidance here.
Employment recruitment opportunities for under 25s
A new £2 billion 'kickstart scheme' will create hundreds of thousands of new, fully subsidised jobs for young people across the country. Those aged 16-24, claiming Universal Credit and at risk of long-term unemployment, will be eligible. Funding available for each six-month job placement will cover 100% of the National Minimum Wage for 25 hours a week plus the associated employer NIC and minimum pension contributions. Employers will be able to top this wage up.
Employers will also be given £2,000 for each new apprentice they hire under the age of 25 under a new Apprenticeship Scheme. This is in addition to the existing £1,000 payment the government already provides for new 16-18 year-old apprentices and those aged under 25 with an Education, Health and Care Plan. The government will pay employers £1,500 for new apprentices taken on who are age 25 and above, between 1 August 2020 to 31 January 2021.
A Trainee Scheme will also be launched and employers will be paid £1,000 to fund high quality work placements and training for 16-24 year olds.
We recognise that recruiting for and supporting under 25s in the workplace might be a new opportunity for you. In our previous article ‘Managing Millennials’, we summarised the keys aspects for employers for multi-generational working and we are able to offer consultative support with your workplace needs.
While we await further details of these new schemes, employers should consider the impact they are likely to have on their businesses and to begin planning to take advantage of them. It is very important that every effort is made to enable employees to return to work and we will be pleased to assist employers in making their plans.
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