Information on the Kickstart Scheme

information on the kickstart scheme

Looking for Information on the Kickstart Scheme as you’ve heard of it, but aren’t really sure what it’s all about? Well, we’ve gathered the key information so read on!

I don’t know about you, but when I graduated, I really didn’t know what I wanted to do, let along what was available out there for me to do. At school, the only known careers options were Vet, Doctor, Politics, Teacher, Solicitor or Accountant. I had no idea about the wealth of opportunities out there, the different industries, the different roles in each business.

I was fortunate enough that the job market was good and I quickly found my feet here at Dovetail. But I now really feel for the current graduates, school leavers and apprentices who are faced with the challenge of finding an entry level role in the pandemic riddled world.

So I thought I’d take the opportunity to make our clients aware of the Kickstarter scheme. I’m sure you’ve heard of it, but like me, didn’t really know how to go about it, what was covered or what the benefits of it were.

Eligibility, Placements & Partnerships

The first thing you might notice is it seems to be open only to companies who can offer a minimum of 30 placements. Given the fantastic number of SMEs who successfully contribute to the economy, I’m sure I’m not the only one who feels frustrated by this. However, if 30 placements just isn’t possible (I know many companies in Dorset who don’t even reach 30 employees), you can partner with other organisations in the area. Here’s the link to some contacts in your area to help you get a representative:

What must the placements entail?

The placements cannot replace planned vacancies or cause existing staff to be made redundant or reduce their hours/pay. The roles must be:

  • For 16 – 24 year olds who are claiming Universal Credit and at risk of long term unemployment
  • At least 25 hours per week
  • A 6 month long placement
  • Paid at least National Minimum Wage
  • Not require extensive training prior to starting

Furthermore, the placements should offer candidates to develop their skills and experience, help them to look for long term work, help with their CV and interview prep and ready them with basic skills.

What funding is available for the scheme?

The government have confirmed that the scheme will cover the full amount of the National Minimum Wage for 25 hours per week, the National Insurance Contributions and the employer minimum automatic enrolment contributions. The employer is able to provide a higher wage and more hours, but these will not be covered.

Other Opportunities

The scheme not quite right for you? Well did you know there is also the Apprenticeship and Traineeships schemes?


The government will give £2000 to employers for every new apprentice they hire under the age of 25 and £1500 for those aged 25 and over from the 1st August 2020 to 31st January 2021. This will be in addition to the current £1000 payment provided for new 16 – 18 year old apprentices, or those aged under 25 with an Education, Health and Care plan. Apprentices work 30 hours a week or more and the minimum wage is £4.15 per hour.


These are unpaid work placements for those aged 16 – 24 with Level 3 qualifications and below. They are available to give young people skills that will get them ready for an apprenticeship. The government have pledged to give employers £1000 for each high quality work placement undertaken by a trainee.

National Minimum/Living Wage Figures

The rates are as follows:

  • £4.55 for under 18s
  • £6.45 for those aged 18 – 20
  • £8.20 for those aged 21 – 24
  • £8.72 for those aged 25+

For further information on the Kickstart scheme there are lots of resources online and the GOV website is very helpful.

Related Dovetail articles:
Holiday Entitlement & Coronavirus
Job Retention Bonus
Job Market Report: August

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