Whether you’re an employer who wants to encourage apprentices or you’re an apprentice who’s looking for an employer, there are a number of ways to make sure that you’re getting the most from your apprenticeship. These include recognising prior learning and industrial arrangements, improving reporting, and Single Touch Payroll.
Single Touch Payroll
Using Single Touch Payroll is an easy way for employers to report payroll information to the Australian Tax Office (ATO) when employees are paid. The ATO will then use the data to help calculate entitlements available through the Australian Apprenticeships Incentives Program.
The ATO has developed a website that provides information about Single Touch Payroll. This includes the various employer incentives available to firms. Those incentives are grouped into two categories, direct and targeted.
The direct incentive is a tax incentive that encourages employers to take on apprentices. The amount of tax credit depends on the size and duration of the apprenticeship programme. Those who take on apprentices also receive a wage subsidy.
The targeted incentive is a subsidy for apprentices with learning difficulties. These subsidies are based on the number of apprentices in an organisation, the year the apprentice was recruited, and the level of training the apprentice received.
The ATO website also suggests that employers should be prepared to report more data when using Single Touch Payroll Phase 2 (STP2). This will involve reporting data prior to finalising employee income statements.
Several countries provide incentives for firms to take apprentices. These incentives range from tax exemptions to subsidies. They are designed to address skills shortages in certain industries. Some countries also offer incentives for disadvantaged groups or under-represented social groups.
In Australia, for example, employer incentives for hiring apprentices are based on the amount of income they generate, the duration of the apprenticeship, and the number of trainees. Other countries provide incentives for apprentices who have special needs. In Germany, subsidies are given to enterprises that train disadvantaged groups. In Austria, firms that hire apprentices receive tax breaks. In Mexico, an apprentice receives a monthly stipend.
In some countries, a firm is allowed to hire an apprentice without a union. This can provide a firm with a more flexible training arrangement. However, it can also reduce the number of apprentices.
The Department of Labor issued a final rule on November 25, 2022, to rescind the 2020 regulation. It aims to restore a unitary regulatory framework for quality apprenticeship programs. It does so by adopting conforming changes to the Registered Apprenticeship regulations in 29 CFR part 29, subpart A.
Recognised prior learning
Whether you’re thinking about a new career or you want to upgrade your skills, Recognition of Prior Learning can benefit you. RPL can reduce your training time and cost. It can also motivate you to continue your education.
The Recognition of Prior Learning approach identifies an individual’s existing knowledge and skills, and matches them to specific National Qualifications Framework (NQF) levels. This approach also assesses the individual’s competencies in terms of their work skills and behaviour. This can be done at the start of the training program, or throughout the training process.
Across US surveys, nearly three-quarters of employers say apprenticeship programs increase their productivity. Eighty-four percent also report that apprenticeships improve their worker morale. apprenticeships reduce errors and turnover, and help develop future managers.
Nearly three-quarters of employers also report that apprenticeships are important for people with less prior attainment. In fact, more than nine in ten employers plan to continue offering apprenticeships in the next 12 months.
Almost all sponsors of apprenticeship programs report that the programs improve worker productivity and skills. Most also highlight other benefits. For example, apprenticeships reduce turnover and safety problems.