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Jigsaw Training news & blog

Blog: A welcome boost for SMEs


During this year’s spring statement, Chancellor Phillip Hammond announced that the government would be releasing £80million from the existing Department for Education (DfE) apprenticeship budget for small and medium sized businesses (SMEs).

The government kick-started its apprenticeship plans by setting itself an ambitions target and committing to increasing the uptake of apprenticeships to three million by 2020.

The new funding announcement has been a long time coming for SMEs and should be welcomed by companies who haven’t previously had access to any funding.

Here are five reasons to welcome this initiative:

  1. The Apprenticeship Levy previously eliminated SMEs from access to direct funding as it was set up only for large employers with a pay bill of over £3million. There has since been an introduction for Levy paying organisations to transfer their funds over to other companies. This encouraged companies to share Levy funding between subsidiaries or companies that are part of a group, meaning the focus was still aimed at large organisations. The introduction of this new £80million funding for SMEs will mean that support is now available to build a stronger workforce throughout all businesses at any size.
  2. Funding will mean SMEs have the ability to increase productivity by employing new members of staff within their workforce and have more scope to invest in their future employees for the long term.
  3. Smaller organisations will be able to tailor their training needs to enhance their businesses and ensure training is specific to their needs.
  4. SMEs struggling to find people with the right skills set can now take on employees with potential to succeed because they have the funding and support available to educate them to a high level.
  5. Apprenticeship funding can be spent on employees at all ages which means companies can bring in new starters whilst developing existing staff. This is an opportunity to upskill staff at all levels and is not just for school leavers.

For further information about available apprenticeship funding contact us on or call us on 01772 430004.

Blog: An apprentice somewhere needs you


Did you know if you are a highly-skilled industry professional who still has more to give, you could become an apprenticeship tutor?

From property maintenance, business management to security and facilities management – you could be the perfect fit to help develop the skills the next generation needs.

So, what is needed to become an apprenticeship tutor?

Knowledge and skills

The best trainers are those with industry experience. Having the knowledge to conduct on-site practical training is what apprentices need to develop their skills in a hands-on environment.

Whilst knowledge and skills are important, having life experience is also a great asset. Being able to relate to people will enable you to form good relationships with your students so that they trust you.

Be a role model

Setting an overall good example is essential when delivering training so that you can impress a good work ethic to the apprentices that you are training.

Alongside the knowledge and skills you possess, having good time management, a smart appearance, being approachable and having the ability to communicate effectively are all key examples of the attributes you need to become a good role model.

Positive attitude

Motivating a team of people and equipping them with the skills they need is probably something you have done throughout your career without realising it.

Having a positive attitude can also contribute to motivating students throughout their studies. It builds their confidence whilst also helping them to enjoy what they are learning.


If you have the right attributes the chances are you could be a great fit to become an apprenticeship tutor. There are opportunities at all levels in a diverse range of subjects.

At Jigsaw Training we provide on-the-job training for individuals who have industry experience, the right attitude and want to teach.

Team spirit is in our genetics. We are a growing national company whose roots stem from a closely-knit family run business.

For further information about available vacancies please have a look at our website, contact us on or call us on 01772 430004

Blog: Quality of training is key


A decrease in the number of apprenticeships being offered in 2017 leaves the government under great scrutiny over the Apprenticeship Levy

A survey carried out by the Confederation of British Industry (CBI), has shown that businesses are concerned about the Apprenticeship Levy for a number of reasons including pay bill commitments and the quality of training the Levy providers can give off-site.

Although the number of apprenticeships being offered has fallen since the Levy was introduced in April 2017, figures provided by the CBI/ Pertemps employment trends survey in 2017 predict that the number of apprenticeships is set to rise.

One indicator shows that almost half of participants – 46 per cent – to the survey plan to recruit more apprentices in the next 12 months. Another result showed only four per cent will cut back on the number of apprentices they employ.

It will be hard to measure if the statistics will rise due to the implementation of the Apprenticeship Levy or from a natural increase in discussions and awareness in apprenticeships anyway.

Whether you are for or against it, the Levy offers opportunities for all levels of the workforce at any stage of learning. Getting behind it will increase the number of skilled people back into the workforce and inevitably increase employment.

At Jigsaw Training, we believe the Levy should help young people, while also providing opportunities for older apprentices at any level of knowledge or age.

Delivering training to the highest standard is an important priority here whether as part of the Levy process or not.

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