As an employer, you have a legal responsibility to make sure your apprentice is being paid the correct wage. Although you can decide your own salary range for your apprentice, you have to make sure that they are receiving at least the national minimum wage for their age and experience.
On the blog this week, we’ll go over the rules for how much you should pay your apprentice. Keep reading to find out more!
What is the minimum wage for an apprentice?
The minimum wage for an apprentice depends on how old they are, and whether they have already completed the first year of their apprenticeship.
The current National Minimum Wage rate for an apprentice is:
- £4.30 an hour for an apprentice who is aged 16-18 and in the first year of their apprenticeship
- £4.30 an hour for an apprentice who is aged 19 or over and in the first year of their apprenticeship
- The National Minimum Wage or National Living Wage rate for an apprentice who is aged 19 or over and has completed the first year of their apprenticeship
If your apprentice is entitled to the National Minimum Wage or National Living Wage rate, they should receive:
- £6.56 an hour if they are 19 or 20 years old
- £8.36 an hour if they are 21 or 22 years old
- £8.91 an hour if they are over 23 years old
These figures are expected to increase in April 2022. You can find the most up-to-date government information on the national minimum wage here.
What do I need to pay my apprentice for?
The wage you pay your apprentice must cover the following:
- Payment for their normal working hours
- Training that’s part of their apprenticeship (at least 20% of their normal working hours)
- Study towards English and maths qualifications, if this is part of their apprenticeship
If your apprentice works overtime, you do not have to pay them extra, but you must make sure their pay does not fall below the minimum wage rate they are entitled to.
Your apprentice is also entitled to at least 20 days paid holiday per year, including bank holidays. However, this figure might vary depending on when in the year your apprentice started working with you, so you can calculate the exact holiday entitlement for your apprentice using this calculator.
Can I pay my apprentice more than the minimum wage?
Yes, absolutely! By offering a higher salary, you will attract even better and more talented candidates to your company. In fact, it is not uncommon for many higher and degree apprenticeships to offer starting wages that rival graduate salaries.
How much you choose to pay your apprentice might vary on several factors, including the location of your company. For example, if your company is based in London, you might choose to factor the London Living Wage into your apprentice’s salary, because living costs are higher in London than in other parts of the country.
As of February 2022, the London Living Wage is £11.05 an hour. You can find more information about this on the Mayor of London’s website here.
You may also choose to include other benefits for your apprentices, such as a season ticket loan or private health insurance. Although this is optional, it will help attract apprentices to your business and help you stand out from your competitors.
Get your apprentice wage questions solved by Easy Apprenticeships
We hope this blog has been a helpful guide to apprentice wages. shed some light on apprentice wages. However, if you need any more advice about this or any other part of the apprenticeship process, we can help!
At Easy Apprenticeships, we’ll guide you through every step of the apprenticeship process, with a fully managed recruitment service and a dedicated team of advisors to support you. Find out more about our process on our website here, or call us today on 0203 982 7600 for a free consultation!