Hospitality businesses looking to take on apprentices may get a boost from the government as part of potential new funding proposals announced today.
The reforms are being considered alongside other possibilities as detailed by entrepreneur Doug Richard in the Richard Review of Apprentices, published in November 2012, with consultations expected to take 10 weeks.
The three proposals include a direct payment model, which will allow businesses to claim funding for registered apprentices via a new online system, with direct payment into their bank account; a PAYE model, which will use the same online system but with payment through the business's PAYE return; and a provider payment model that will see Government money paid to training providers, who will only be able to draw on it once they have received payment from employers.
Cable said: "Employers are the best people to judge what training is worth investing in. These reforms will give them the power to train their staff to make sure their skills are relevant to the company, while choosing from the wide range of courses available.
"These measures are all part of the wider reforms the government is making to the apprenticeship system. By giving the training that companies actually want, we are helping to create jobs and support business."
The proposal announcement comes soon after the news that companies with fewer than 1,000 employees will be able to make use of an additional £1,500 Apprenticeship Grant for Employers (AGE) when recruiting apprentices.
Michael Davis, chief executive of the UK Commission for Employment and Skills, said: "Apprenticeships are a proven way of delivering highly productive, well trained and loyal staff. The commission's perspective is that we must return apprenticeships to their founding principle - a contract between the apprentice and the employer, valued and funded as such."