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Press Comment: Delay to apprenticeship funding needs to be addressed in work and employment pledges

15/05/2017

Today the Conservative party began outlining their policies on how they plan to improve work and employment and Theresa May has said ‘the conservative party has always been the true party of those workers.’ However, so far the Conservative Party have failed to address a major hiccup in their new apprenticeship scheme.* 

In April the Education and Skills Funding Agency announced that it was pausing its £440 million procurement process for the 98 percent of non-levy paying employers. The government announced that it needs to revisit how it will distribute funding and many training providers may not receive funding until 2018.

This will impact new learners and providers alike. Old Mutual Wealth’s Financial Adviser School, a not for profit training provider offers a study programme providing academic support and soft-skills training for those hoping to obtain a Diploma in Financial Planning and pursue a career as a professional financial adviser. It was planning to provide apprenticeships from this year.

Darren Smith, head of the Financial Adviser School, comments:

“In the run up to the general election, political parties have started to outline fresh plans to improve education and employment. They must not fail to address the revised plans to the apprenticeship scheme, which has hit a large stumbling block. Whoever comes to power needs to address the funding issue quickly to ensure the scheme, which is crucial to the economy’s growth, is a success.

“The UK population is being faced with a huge squeeze on incomes. Today research from the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development revealed that pay growth for most employees will be minimal and expect an average wage growth of just 1.7% in the next year. Government needs to set out its plans for how it is going to address this issue and in particular consider how to improve opportunities for those who are on the lower end of the pay scale. The apprenticeship levy is a key way to combat this problem as it offers the population opportunities to upskill through education.  

“The delay in funding has meant all apprenticeship providers, including the Financial Adviser School, now have to either find other sources of funding or tell students they will have to wait for next year.

“With the upcoming snap election, political parties have the opportunity to outline how they plan to address the issue of apprenticeships and to ensure that the merits of this initiative are not destroyed.”

*Background on apprenticeship levy: The new levy requires all employers in the UK with an annual wage bill of over £3 million to pay 0.5% of it towards funding apprenticeships. This money will be invested in quality training for apprentices and double the annual investment in apprenticeships in England to £2.5 billion by 2019 to 2020, compared with 2010 to 2011 levels.

 

For more information contact

Kathleen GallagherOld Mutual Wealth023 8072 629307990 004932kathleen.gallagher@omwealth.com

Notes to editors:

Quilter is a leading wealth management business in the UK and internationally, helping to create prosperity for the generations of today and tomorrow.

On a ‘go forward basis’, Quilter oversees £ 111.6 billion in customer investments (as at 31 March 2018).

It has an adviser and customer offering spanning: financial advice; investment platforms; multi-asset and single strategy investment solutions; and discretionary fund management.

The business is comprised of two segments: Wealth Platforms and Advice and Wealth Management.

Wealth Platforms includes the Old Mutual Wealth UK Platform; Old Mutual International, including AAM Advisory in Singapore; and the Old Mutual Wealth Heritage life assurance business.

Advice and Wealth Management encompasses the financial planning network, Intrinsic; Old Mutual Wealth Private Client Advisers; discretionary fund management business, Quilter Cheviot; and Old Mutual Wealth’s multi-asset investment solutions business.

The Quilter businesses will be re-branded to Quilter over a period of approximately two years following separation from Old Mutual:

  • Intrinsic to Quilter Financial Planning
  • Private Client Advisers to Quilter Private Client Advisers
  • The Multi-Asset business to Quilter Investors
  • The UK Platform to Quilter Wealth Solutions
  • The International business to become Quilter International
  • The Heritage life assurance business to Quilter Life Assurance
  • Quilter Cheviot will retain its name.

On 19 December 2017, Old Mutual Wealth announced that it has agreed to sell its Single Strategy asset management business to the Single Strategy Management team and funds managed by TA Associates. The proposed transaction is subject to customary closing conditions, including regulatory approvals. 

Quilter is part of Old Mutual plc, a FTSE 100 group that provides investment, savings, insurance and banking. For the year ended 31 December 2017, Old Mutual reported an adjusted operating profit before tax of £2.0 billion. For further information on Old Mutual plc and the underlying businesses, please visit the corporate website at www.oldmutualplc.com.

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