As part of the UK Government’s Autumn Statement, Chancellor Jeremy Hunt announced that as of 1st April 2024, the UK minimum wage for apprenticeships is set to rise from £5.28 to £6.40 per hour. This significant change translates to a cash boost of £1.12 per hour*, marking a substantial increase of 21.2%.

At JTL, we embrace this change as it will provide greater opportunities for our learners to complete their apprenticeship qualification, which will therefore positively impact employers and the wider industries too.

Who benefits from an increase in the apprenticeship minimum wage?

Approximately 40,000 apprentices across the UK will be positively impacted from this wage increase** and it is hoped that it will allow more people to start and finish their apprenticeship programmes, benefitting apprentices and employers alike.

This boost in income not only provides financial stability, but also instils a sense of value and recognition for the hard work put in by apprentices to the businesses they operate within.

The increase will in turn also benefit employers, as it will encourage qualification completion, leading to a retained and skilled workforce.

How will it impact employers?

It’s important to note that while the minimum wage for apprenticeships is increasing, many employers already pay above this threshold.

The increase to the minimum wage will act as a catalyst to enable more individuals to consider undertaking an apprenticeship and, following this, complete their qualifications with confidence.

Legal obligations and future prospects

It’s vital to understand the legal framework surrounding apprenticeship wages. Employers are mandated to pay at least the apprenticeship minimum wage to apprentices aged 16-18, in addition to those aged 19 or over during the first year of their apprenticeship.

Following the completion of their first year of the apprenticeship, individuals aged over 19 should go on to receive the correct national minimum wage for their age from their employer.

Creating a leading education and skills system

 This increase in wages is a key investment in education and skills development for individuals across England and Wales, laying the foundations for a future-proofed workforce that can drive the building services engineering sector.

The increased investment in apprenticeships contributes to developing a more skilled, motivated and qualified workforce, which is crucial for long-term economic growth.

As we approach the rise of minimum wage in April, JTL continues to work closely with its apprentices, employers and the wider communities to deliver high-quality and rewarding apprenticeship programmes that make an impact on the wider industries they operate within.

* https://www.gov.uk/government/news/chancellor-backs-business-and-rewards-workers-to-get-britain-growing

** https://educationhub.blog.gov.uk/2023/11/23/autumn-statement-2023-what-does-it-mean-for-apprenticeships/