The Kickstart Scheme
The Kickstart Scheme is a new initiative to support 16-24 year olds into work. It has recently been launched by the Government.
Any size and type of organisation that employs people can offer young people, claiming Universal Credit, a six-month work placement that will be paid for by government. The Kickstart Scheme will be delivered by the Department for Work and Pensions and will initially be open until December 2021, with the option of being extended.
Kickstart Scheme jobs must be new and of good quality. Government will pay 100% of the age-relevant National Minimum Wage, National Insurance and pension contributions for 25 hours a week.
Employers will be able to top up this wage, while the Government will also pay employers £1500 to set up support and training for people on a Kickstart Scheme placement, as well as helping pay for uniforms and other set up costs.
More information for employers is available on GOV.UK.
Supporting Young People
The Department for Work & Pensions know that young people are more likely to have been furloughed, with many working in sectors disproportionately hit by the pandemic. The Kickstart Scheme is an opportunity to build their skills in the workplace. This will improve their chances of finding long-term work.
Young people will be referred to these new roles via their Jobcentre Plus work coach. The first ‘Kickstarts’ are expected to begin at the start of November.
If your organisation is not in a position to directly take part, you can still support young people by helping to spread the word.
The Department for Work & Pensions have produced a range of support material and A Guide for Employers.
They have also created a special page for young people on the jobhelp website.
The Kickstart Scheme for smaller employers
To help smaller businesses and employers offering fewer than 30 placements, there will be a way to bid via an intermediary or representative of a group of employers. These intermediaries can then bid on behalf of groups of employers.
You can find out how this will work here Guidance for representatives of employers.
Plan for jobs
The Kickstart Scheme was announced in July as part of the Government’s Plan for Jobs. This includes doubling the number of frontline Work Coaches to 27,000 and an Expanded Youth Offer to support 18-24 year olds. The Department for Work & Pensions are also increasing participation in the sector-based work academy programme, aiming to support 40,000 placement jobseekers to get the right skills for the roles that are on offer.
Find out more information at the Plan for Jobs webpage.