Back in July 2020, in The Chancellor’s mini-budget, he promised the launch of a new Kickstart Scheme designed to enable young people on Universal Credit, who have lost jobs and opportunities to begin and develop a career, to get back to work.
What is the scheme?
The Kickstart Scheme provides funding to create new jobs for 16 to 24 year olds on Universal Credit who are at risk of long term unemployment. Employers of all sizes can apply for funding which covers:
- 100% of either the National Minimum or National Living Wage depending on the age of the individual, for 25 hours per week for a total of 6 months.
- Any associated employer’s National Insurance contributions.
- The minimum automatic enrolment pension contributions.
Employers can spread the job start dates up until 31st December 2021, meaning if an individual starts on this date, you will get funding until 30th June 2022.
What jobs meet the criteria for the Kickstart Scheme?
The jobs created with Kickstart Scheme funding must be new jobs. The newly created jobs for the scheme must not:
- Replace existing or planned vacancies.
- Cause existing employees, apprentices or contractors to lose any work or suffer a reduction in their working hours.
You will need to provide details on the number of employees you have, changes to your workforce over the last 6 months, if you would be able to create these jobs without the Kickstart Scheme and the funding you would use for this. If the jobs will be similar to existing or planned roles, or the roles previously filled with those who have been made redundant, you will need to provide information as to why you are using the Kickstart Scheme funding to create similar roles.
In terms of how you will support the young people you will employ using the Kickstart Scheme funding, you will need to provide details on what support will be offered to aid the individual in becoming more employable, when you will provide this support and how many hours it will take. Details on who will provide the support, how you will monitor this, and how the individual can provide feedback will also need to be given.
What do I receive for using the Kickstart Scheme?
You’ll get £1,500 funding per job. This should be spent on setup costs and supporting the young person to develop their employability skills, in areas such as:
- Training and employability support (provided by you, a Kickstart gateway or another provider)
- IT equipment and software
- Uniform or Personal Protective Equipment
The DWP may ask you for your records to show that you’ve spent the funding on setup costs and supporting the young person’s employability.
How do I apply for a Kickstart Scheme grant?
You can apply for a Kickstart Scheme grant by either:
- Applying online yourself using the following link: https://www.apply-kickstart-grant-employer.service.gov.uk/
- Applying through a Kickstart gateway who is already working with the Kickstart Scheme: https://secure.dwp.gov.uk/find-a-kickstart-gateway/
What is a Kickstart Gateway?
A Kickstart gateway can be any type of organisation, such as a local authority, charity or trade body. They will act as an intermediary and apply for funding on your behalf. They may also provide employability support to the young people in the job on your behalf.
Kickstart gateways will:
- gather information about the jobs you’d like to offer
- share this information with DWP on your behalf
- pay the funding to you (for example the young person’s salary)
If I use a Kickstart Gateway, what do they get?
Kickstart gateways will get £360 for each job to cover admin costs. They may have to pay VAT on this amount depending on their individual circumstances.
If they do not pay VAT, £60 from this payment will be paid to you by the Kickstart gateway (in addition to the £1,500 funding for setup costs) to further support the young person.
The scheme is now OPEN for registrations, and vacancies are starting to be filled. If you are interested in pursuing this, and require any further information, please get in touch with your account manager at CMA and we’ll be happy to help!