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Launch date for Cleaning Hygiene Operative Apprenticeship confirmed

Sector companies are being urged to gift unused Levy funds as the launch date for the Level 2 Cleaning Hygiene Operative Apprenticeship is confirmed as 1 January 2024.

The Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education (IfATE) has announced that the new Apprenticeship Standard for the whole of the cleaning and hygiene industry will go live on the first day of the new year.

Cleaning Hygiene Operative Apprenticeships offer the opportunity for sector organisations to use Apprenticeship Levy payments to invest in their staff, providing employees an opportunity to access a recognised work-related cleaning qualification.

All sector employers with an annual wage bill of more than £3 million pay the Apprenticeship Levy and can use Levy payments to implement the Apprenticeship Standard in their businesses, as could smaller businesses which have been gifted Levy payments.

The British Cleaning Council (BCC) is calling on larger businesses to gift or transfer unused Levy funds to smaller businesses which otherwise would not be able to fund Cleaning Hygiene Operative Apprenticeships.

Employers can choose to transfer up to 25 per cent of their Levy funds each year to other businesses to pay for apprenticeship training and assessment, via their apprenticeship service account, which can be set up online.

BCC Chair Delia Cannings said: “The Apprenticeship Standard for the industry is a fantastic opportunity for businesses to invest in staff training and for individual employees to gain a recognised work-related qualification.

“I urge businesses to get themselves in the starting blocks so they can be quick off the mark on 1 January and start setting up apprenticeships.

“There are millions of pounds of Levy funding every year from cleaning and hygiene sector companies which goes unused, so let’s put this money to good use.

“If a company isn’t using up its Levy funding on apprentices, please think about gifting. It could help improve the skill levels of staff across the sector, some of whom could be your future employees. By working together, we can benefit the whole industry. Unity is strength.”

Gifting companies can specify which businesses, sectors, skills or local areas they would like to support, meaning funds can be kept within the cleaning and hygiene sector. The Government tops up the payment by 10 per cent.

Transferred funds can only be used to pay for apprenticeship training and assessment up to the funding band maximum.

Smaller companies which need Levy funding for apprenticeships can apply here.

There are also other means of companies not paying the Apprenticeship Levy to access funds. Details of funding rules for other possible options can be found here.

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