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5 Ways Degree Apprenticeships Can Benefit Your SME Business

Here, at Anglia Ruskin University, we are not surprised at its rising popularity. We’ve long advocated that degree apprenticeships have huge benefits for both the employer and the apprentice. With our wide range of higher and degree-level apprenticeships, we support all sorts of businesses, including SMEs.

Find out what Emma, founder of SME marketing company Big Bear Creative, had to say about apprenticeships HERE.

How do degree apprenticeships work?

Apprentices are employed by your company in a job role suitable for the apprenticeship standard you have in mind (and ARU can talk you through this). This means that you can either upskill an existing employee or recruit into a new job role.

The degree apprentice studies with the University while employed by you. They will attend lectures and/or practical workshops, and how these are delivered depends on their programme. They work towards a degree award and develop key knowledge, skills, and behaviours (KSBs).

Ways degree apprenticeships benefit your SME business

1. Apprenticeships are a smart investment

Apprenticeships are a cost-effective way of upskilling or developing new talent. SMEs in England with a payroll of less than £3 million pay just 5% of the cost of the apprenticeship programme. The government pays the remaining 95%. You can get more information on funding apprenticeships for employers from the gov.uk website.

It may also be possible for an SME to tap into funding through the Apprenticeship Levy Transfer scheme. This is essentially when a levy-paying company can transfer up to 25% of their unused apprenticeship levy funds for other companies to use instead.

2. Upskill and retain your employees

Losing employees with years of experience and who know your business inside out is costly both to the efficiency of your organisation, as well as costly to replace them. Retain your most valuable people by encouraging them to grow and develop within your organisation.

3. Attract high calibre recruits and diversify your team

Make sure your organisation gains the competitive advantage when recruiting new talent. Attracting high calibre recruits can bring talent, skills, vibrancy, and diversity to your organisation. We can help with recruitment such as promoting the vacancy on our website and through our e-newsletters.

4. Tailor learning to your workplace needs

Our degree apprenticeships have been created in collaboration with employers to make sure we deliver on topics relevant to industry, in a way that works with the employer. Degree apprenticeships give apprentices a chance to reflect on workplace practices and apply theory to practice, meaning they are contributing to their place of work from day one.

5. Apprentices gain on the job experience and degree qualification

Degree apprentices gain the best of both worlds. ‘In the classroom’ they gain high level knowledge on the latest industry trends and are encouraged to think strategically. At work, they gain valuable hands-on experience.

Want to know more?

Find about the degree apprenticeships we offer or contact the ARU Degrees at Work team to discuss how degree apprenticeships can benefit your business. Email degreesatwork@aru.ac.uk or call us on 01245 686707.

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