If you’re aged between 16-24 years old, you may have heard about the Government’s Kickstart Scheme. But what is it and are you eligible? We talk you through the key facts about Kickstart.
What is the Kickstart Scheme?
Kickstart is a new scheme launched by the Government in July 2020 designed to help young people into jobs as part of the Chancellor’s Plan for Jobs.
Businesses can sign up to be part of the £2 billion scheme to create high-quality, government funded jobs across the UK. As part of the scheme, they’ll be able to offer a 6-month work placement and claim back 100% of the wages, national insurance and pension contributions for 25 hours per week.
Employers can top up the wage and offer more hours if they choose. They can offer as many kickstart placements as they like and can also opt to take the individual on a permanent contract once the placement ends.
They’ll be given £1,500 to get set-up (such as buying uniforms or equipment) and to go towards training. They also need to make sure they help kickstarters develop new skills that will help improve their chances of finding work in the long-term.
Am I eligible?
The scheme is open to anyone on Universal Credit aged between 16-24 years old.
Universal credit is a payment made to help with living costs – for example, if you’re on low income, out of work or if you cannot work. To find out if you’re eligible to claim, click here.
If you are offered a Kickstart placement, you’ll need to work 25 hours per week for a 6-month placement period. You will be paid at least the national minimum wage.
You’ll receive on-the-job training, skills development and mentoring, as well as gaining valuable experience to support you in your future career.
The scheme has been set out as young people are usually the worst affected by financial crisis and unemployment can have longstanding implications for their future jobs and earnings potential.
How does it work?
The scheme is delivered by the Department for Work and Pensions and is open now. It will initially run until December 2021 with the possibility to be extended further.
To apply for a Kickstart placement, you need to talk to your Jobcentre Plus Work Coach. They will tell you about the jobs available, including the duties involved and the training on offer.
Work coaches will then refer you to the employers and guide you through their recruitment process. You’ll receive support with applications, your CV and interviews, as well as when you get offered the role. They’ll keep in touch during your placement to make sure you get the training and support you need, as well as helping you to find another job when the placement ends.
Why should I do a Kickstart placement?
Kickstart placements are a great way to gain experience, particularly if this will be your first rung on the job ladder. As a 6-month placement, you’ll be able to try out the role without the long-term commitment of a permanent job. Whilst doing so, you’ll also receive training, learn new skills and benefit from being part of a team.
During the placement, you’ll be paid at least the national minimum wage, and this may even be topped up if the employer chooses. Once it’s finished, you may be asked to stay on and offered a permanent job. If not, you’ll at least have some experience on your CV which should help you find another job elsewhere.
After a Kickstart placement, you may have a better idea of what job you’d like to do long-term and the skills required. You could then go on to access further support schemes such as an Apprenticeship or Traineeship, find a permanent job or return to your studies.
You can search for the very latest jobs in the Stockport area here. We have a wide range of part time, temporary, volunteer and permanent positions in Administration, Cleaning, Customer Service, Driving, Financial, IT & Tech, Social Care/Healthcare and Warehouse jobs in Stockport. You can also register your CV here.