From XU Magazine, 
Issue 26

Why you should hire an ICB accounting apprentice

This article originated from the Xero blog. The XU Hub is an independent news and media platform - for Xero users, by Xero users. Any content, imagery and associated links below are directly from Xero and not produced by the XU Hub.
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Want to add a breath of fresh air to your team? Someone you can mentor and shape to your business? Then it’s time you consider taking on an  ICB apprentice! Typically spending four days of the week in the office and one day away on government-funded training, apprentices can mean a win-win situation for everyone involved. The apprentice gets to learn invaluable skills in a job they’re passionate about whilst earning a salary and qualifications. Your business benefits from a digitally-minded and eager-to-learn employee whom you can shape into the perfect member of your team. 

ICB awards three accounting apprenticeships that you can choose from to suit your business: Accounts/Finance Assistant Apprenticeship (Level 2), Assistant Accountant Apprenticeship (Level 3) and Payroll Administrator Apprenticeship (Level 3)

Save on Costs and Wages

Hiring an apprentice for your business is a great way to save money, in addition to introducing new skills and talent into your team. Realistically, any new employee should undergo training but, with an ICB accounting apprentice, you’ll have access to government funding and grants to cover most of the cost. Smaller businesses (with an annual pay bill under £3m) can get up to 95% of training costs paid by the government for new recruits or existing staff and there’s an additional incentive payment when you hire an apprentice before the end of March.

As part of the government’s plan to boost economic recovery, you’ll receive a monetary incentive of £2,000 if you hire a new apprentice aged 16-24, or £1,500 for new apprentices above the age of 25, between 1 August 2020 and 31 March 2021. You can find out more about this here.

You can apply for this payment until 30 April 2021 and it’s in addition to the £1,000 employers already receive for hiring certain youngsters into apprenticeships.

Over 59% of apprenticeship employers say training an apprentice is more cost-effective than hiring skilled staff. The average apprenticeship completer will increase business productivity by £214 per week.

“Your apprentice can be completely tailored to suit your business- it’s the best way to gain homegrown talent!” Mark Bremner, Business Director and CEO of MBKB

For more information on an apprentice’s wage click here.

Boost Your Productivity

Whilst you might worry that training an apprentice is too time-consuming, 78% of employers report that apprenticeships help them improve productivity. ICB Apprentice of the Year, Maddi Cooper, from Dudley accountants Whitley Stimpson Ltd knows first-hand that apprentices are eager to learn and want to do everything they can to support your business. It’s a win-win situation; you’ll encourage their growth, and, in turn, you have a hard worker on your team ready to help at any time

“I enjoy that you get to learn about new legislation, furlough during coronavirus, payment, redundancies... I just love that there’s so much to learn!” Maddi Cooper, ICB Apprentice of the Year 2020

Knowing that your apprentice is combining your guidance with 20% off-the-job training can provide you with the reassurance that they’re gaining a broader knowledge of their subject, underpinned by the National Apprenticeship Standard and examined by ICB, which acts as the End Point Assessor.

“People can be set in their ways, but a new apprentice is there to learn from you. Young people tend to also be more digitally minded, having grown up using computers and the internet, which is always a useful asset.” Ashley Wood, Dudley College

The Best Way to Gain Homegrown Talent

The greatest benefit of hiring an apprentice is that you get to shape them and their skills to the needs of your business. You’ll be training and mentoring someone who could be a complete beginner, which means you can mould them into your perfect employee. Whether you’re employing someone in their first role or upskilling an existing employee, the goal of an apprenticeship is to create a work and learning environment that is beneficial to both employee and employer. 86% of employers said apprenticeships helped them develop skills relevant to their organisation, whilst 74% said apprenticeships helped them improve the quality of their product or service. In addition to this, over 90% of apprentices remain at their company after completing their course, meaning you’ll have gained a loyal employee you nurtured from the beginning of their journey. 

“Running the apprenticeship scheme allows you to train an individual not only in the legislative requirements but also to mould them into your processes and protocols so they become qualified and experienced in exactly how your business works so they fit into your visions and values.”Mark Bremner, Business Director and CEO of MBKB

Find out how you can hire an ICB apprentice here.

ICB apprenticeship assessments and qualifications can be completed online and fitted around the needs of your business. Speak to us today, or visit our website, to find the ideal route for upskilling yourself or your workforce as Certified Bookkeepers and Payroll Agents. 

Why leave it there?

To find out more about hiring an ICB accounting or bookkeeping apprentice

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