Academic Year 2019/20

Apprenticeships and traineeships

Published
Last updated
See all updates (4) for Academic Year 2019/20
  1. Updated provisional status of 2019/20 achievements to final and updated user guide

  2. Corrected mis-typed figure in content

  3. Updated with December transparency data

  4. Updated to add links to interactive data visualisation tool

Introduction

December 2020 update

This update provides the latest available apprenticeship service data, along with new additional analysis relevant to the COVID-19 outbreak.

The November apprenticeships and traineeships release used the final data return for the 2019/20 academic year (August 2019 to July 2020).

The first in-year apprenticeship starts data for the 2020/21 academic year be published in January 2020 and will cover August to October 2020.

Impact of COVID-19 on reporting of FE and apprenticeship data

The 2019/20 data covers the period affected by COVID-19 and the nationwide lockdown (i.e. from March 2020 onwards), which will have impacted on apprenticeship and traineeship learning and also provider reporting behaviour via the Individualised Learner Record. Therefore, extra care should be taken in comparing and interpreting data presented in this release. 

As this is a completely new approach to publishing our data and statistics, your feedback is important to help us improve and develop. Please see the Find my data and feedback section for more information on this. 

We will also be doing some proactive user research, the details of which will be provided in the apprenticeship and traineeship January 2021 release. 


Headline facts and figures - 2019/20

Final figures for 2019/20 show:

  • Since May 2015 there have been 2,211,200 apprenticeship starts and since May 2010 this total stands at 4,588,800
  • Higher apprenticeships accounted for over a quarter of starts (25.6% or 82,500 starts) while Intermediate and Advanced apprenticeships accounted for 74.4% of starts (240,100)
  • Under 19s accounted for 23.6% of starts; 19-24s for 29.5% and those aged 25+ made up 46.8%
  • Apprenticeship standards made up nearly three-quarters of starts (240,700)
  • Starts supported by Apprenticeship Service Account levy funds accounted for 64.9% (209,300) - please see ‘About these statistics’ for more information about ASA levy funds
  • An average of 1.7% of employees started an apprenticeship in public sector organisations between April 2017 and March 2020.
  • During the period since the start of lockdown (23 March to 31 July 2020), there were 60,860 starts - a 45.5% drop compared to the same period in 2018/19. Of these starts:
    • Learners aged 25 and over accounted for 61.6% (54.5% in the previous year).
    • Intermediate apprenticeships accounted for 25.6% (36.1% in the previous year).
    • Higher apprenticeships accounted for 31.4% (17.7% in the previous year).

Explore data and files

About these statistics

December 2020 update

This update provides the latest available apprenticeship service data, along with new additional analysis relevant to the COVID-19 outbreak.

Original November 2020 release

This statistical release presents finalised information on all age (16+) apprenticeships starts, participation and achievement in England reported for the full 2019/20 academic year (August 2019 to July 2020). 

This release also contains latest data on commitments from the apprenticeship service. These official statistics are produced to provide transparency with regards to the apprenticeship service, an online service implemented in May 2017 that allows organisations to choose and pay for apprenticeship training more easily, and its usage.

Additionally, progress towards the public sector apprenticeship target after the third year of the four-year measure is reported for the first time, covering the period 1 April 2017 to 31 March 2020. 

A separate release covers overall further education and skills data, please see ‘Further education and skills’. Please note that the overall FE and skills release includes the adult apprenticeships and traineeships published here in its headline figures.

Individualised Learner Record (ILR) administrative data

The Apprenticeship data in this release is based on the final ILR data return from FE and apprenticeship providers for the 2019/20 academic year. The ILR is an administrative data collection system designed primarily for operational use in order to fund training providers for learners in FE and on apprenticeship programmes.

2019/20 achievement data update

In November, achievements for 2019/20 were marked as provisional in the end of year release.  This release was based on the final provider return, R14. This reflected uncertainty over whether providers were in the position to report final achievements for 2019/20 given alternate arrangements for exams and assessments which were in place over the COVID-19 period.  Analysis of 2019/20 data at the time showed higher levels of records than normal being marked in the achievement field as ‘results unknown’ or being marked in the completion field as ‘learning continuing’. Given this ambiguity the results were marked as provisional pending further data from providers to clarify the position.

Reporting flexibilities were implemented to allow providers to continue to report achievements in the 2020/21 returns and analysis of the 2020/21 R04 return of those with planned end dates for 2019/20 as at R14 has found these learners had either gone on to achieve but have been marked with an achievement date in the 2020/21 period or have been marked as continuing learning beyond the original planned end date.  

Please note that the ILR is an administrative system designed for financial reporting and does not offer the level of precision one might need to estimate real world impact from the disruption of the pandemic.  The new analysis requires linking of learners across years which leads to a small degree of error and it is possible providers will go on to change records as reported at R04 in the 2020/21 data (which this analysis is based on), or add new records for the small proportion of learners for whom a link in 2020/21 could not be found in the R04 data.

However, given that the vast majority of records have been linked and found to have either achieved in 2020/21 or are recorded as continuing learning, it seems on balance appropriate to take provider reporting for the end of year return and for 2020/21 as a true record. We therefore will treat 2019/20 achievements published in November as a final record.

Comparison of achievements for 2019/20 with 2018/19 and with 2020/21 should also be treated with caution because the disruption to exams and assessments and breaks in learning etc will have led to less achievements in 2019/20 than would normally have been expected to achieve.  Likewise, the 2020/21 year will have more achievements than would have otherwise been the case, given delays in training or passing assessments etc.  

At the end of the 2019/20 reporting year there were a total of 54,500 records where the learning was expected to have ended but the outcome was unknown. Looking at the latest data returns (R04, 2020/21) we can now confirm that 16,700 of those now have a known outcome, 29,400 are recorded as continuing learning, and 5,800 have completed learning with the outcome as yet unknown. Of those with a known outcome 14,400 have achieved.  The majority (13,900) have an achievement date which falls in the 2020/21 academic year.

Provider reporting during the period affected by COVID-19 

The latest data in this publication covers the period affected by COVID-19 and the nationwide lockdown, i.e. from March 2020 onwards (note: the UK lockdown was announced on 23 March so is likely to have impacted on, for example, apprenticeships starts from the last week of March). Therefore, extra care should be taken in comparing and interpreting data presented in this release. 

The furlough scheme may also have impacted on how aspects of ILR data are currently being recorded, such as how the ‘learning status’ of a learner has been captured, e.g. whether a learner is currently recorded as a continuing learner or whether they are being recorded as being on a break in learning while still being with an employer. 

Comparison statistics are provided for the periods before and after the lockdown and against the same periods in the previous academic year.

Impact of the apprenticeship levy

As of May 2017, reforms were made to how apprenticeship funding works, including the introduction of the apprenticeship levy and apprenticeship service. The profile of apprenticeship starts changed significantly since the introduction of the levy which, along with the introduction of apprenticeship standards (that are replacing frameworks), has impacted on the number and nature of apprenticeship starts and participation.

We have amended our approach to how we measure the number of starts we publish which are supported by Apprenticeship Service Account (ASA) levy funds (also known as ‘levy starts’). This has been necessary to address changes to collection systems to enable non levy providers to utilise the Apprenticeship Levy system for 2019/20 academic year.  This change only affects data for 2019/20.

In terms of the methodology approach for 2019/20, we identify an individual as being ‘levy funded’ if they have been recorded as funded by the levy in either the ILR or the Apprenticeship Service system, or if the employer has paid levy at some point during the academic year. The reason for the changed in methodology for 2019/20 is because since January 2020 non levy payers have been using the Apprenticeship Service, meaning the methodology used for 2018/19 could no longer be applied to derive a consistent time series of only those apprenticeships using £1 or more of levy funds the ASA draws down against their levy payments.  

Essentially if an employer has paid the levy at some point during the year any associated apprenticeship start in the year will be classed as a ‘levy start’, even though the apprentice could have been funded by the employer or could have been ESFA funded. This potentially incorporates around 20,000 ‘levy starts’ based on the ‘levy firm’ status, which may not have actually been funded directly by ASA levy funds. 

The 2019/20 data therefore should be treated as provisional pending a fuller methodology review after which we expect to implement an improved method in our January release.

Public sector apprenticeship statistics

Public bodies who are in scope are required to submit a Data Publication and Activity return to the Department for Education each reporting year of the apprenticeship target. In their returns, public bodies provide self-reported information on the employment period and headcount relating to the target. The onus is on individual bodies to be accountable for their programme and to publish this information independently as well as report progress to the DfE. 

The underlying data for the target release exactly replicates the information supplied by public sector bodies. As such, the accuracy of these submissions cannot be completely verified in all aspects, although certain validation checks have been undertaken and some bodies removed from the calculation of aggregated numbers and flagged in the underlying data. 

Certain inconsistencies may appear between headcount and apprentice data submitted in each reporting year by an individual body. Some of these can be explained by a change in structure in the body (e.g. a merger). 

It is difficult to give a completely accurate measure of the coverage of submission received. An internal mapping based on Apprenticeship Service account names has identified those that appear to be public sector but not all those flagged will be in scope (e.g. some will have fewer than 250 staff). Comparing the 2019-20 submissions with our mapping of accounts suggest that at least 60% of all public sector bodies irrespective of size, have made an official return. Further to this, linking accounts to starts recorded on the ILR suggests that over 80% of all public sector starts were in the bodies that have made an official return. 

The group of public sector bodies making a data return in 2019-20 is different to those that responded in previous years; 

  • some bodies that submitted in previous years have not supplied data for 2019-20
  • some bodies are submitting for the first time in 2019-20 returns
  • some bodies have either fallen in or out of scope of the target based on the 250 headcount threshold
  • multi academy trusts were not required to submit data in 2017-18.

As such, the aggregate totals for headcount and apprentices as at 31 March 2019 (the end- point of the 2018-19 collection and the start point of the 2019-20) will differ between collections. The same is true for the transition between 2017-18 and 2018-19.

Aggregate headcount and apprentice figures and associated percentages are shown separately for the start and end of each reporting year. In addition, an average percentage of employees starting an apprenticeship over the period of the target is calculated as a weighted average of the three reporting years so far

Further information about the data collection process, the public bodies in scope and the mapping of Apprenticeship Service Accounts to sectors, can be found in the technical information section of the November 2018 release.

Annual time series

History of apprenticeship participation

Latest figures for 2019/20 show all-age apprenticeship participation was 719,000. 

There has been a steady decline in participation since a high of 908,700 in 2016/17. This is driven by a rapid decline in participation at intermediate level. 

In contrast, participation in higher apprenticeships has increased steadily since 2014/15.  

Participation in apprenticeships by those aged 19+ in 2019/20 was 583,400 – small increase on the 2018/19 figure of 581,400. 

Putting those figures into context, the total number of adults participating in all further education and skills was just under 1.75 million in 2019/20.

Apprenticeship starts

Final 2019/20 figures show:

  • Higher apprenticeship (level 4+) starts reached their highest volume, representing a quarter of all starts.
  • The share of starts for under 19s fell to 23.6% from 24.8% in 2018/19.
  • Total starts supported by ASA levy funds were 209,300; this accounts for 64.9% of all starts. Please see About these statistics for more information about ASA levy funds

Higher apprenticeship starts have increased over time. These accounted for just 4% of starts  (19,800) in 2014/15, rising to 25.6% (82,500) in 2019/20. 

Note: apprenticeship starts is a count of apprenticeship programmes that begin in an academic year. For more detail on how we count starts and other measures please see the User Guide in ‘download associated files’.

More detailed breakdowns of the combinations of characteristics in the table above are available in our table builder tool as well as information on achievements. The following table offers a useful breakdown as a starting point.

Achievements by level (this table also includes age and supported by levy funds status).

Average expected duration of apprenticeships

The expected duration of an apprenticeship is the difference between the associated start date and planned end date as recorded in the ILR. 

Latest figures show that the average expected duration of an apprenticeship:

  • increased from 406 days in 2011/12 to 621 days in 2019/20
  • increased by 1.6% in the last year - from 611 days in 2018/19 to 621 days in 2019/20

Length of employment

Of apprenticeship starts in 2019/20 where the length of employment was known:

  • Apprentices who had worked for their employer for more than 12 months accounted for 40.7%
  • Apprentices who had worked for up to 3 months accounted for 43.5%

These rates have remained relatively stable over time.

Planned length of stay

Latest figures for 2019/20 show that 94.5% of apprenticeships started were expected to last for 12 months or more – the highest percentage recorded.

Older apprentices were more likely to have a planned apprenticeship stay of fewer than 12 months; 

  • for those aged 25 and over – 7.0%
  • for those aged 19-24 – 6.2%
  • for those aged under 19 – 1.7% 

Learner characteristics

Out of the 322,500 apprenticeship starts reported in 2019/20: 

  • Females account for 48.8% (157,400 starts);
  • Apprentices aged Under 19 account for 23.6% (76,300);
  • 19 to 24-year-olds account for 29.5% (95,300);
  • Apprentices aged 25 and over account for 46.8% (151,000);
  • Black, Asian, and other ethnic minorities (BAME) represent 13.3% (42,100); and,
  • Apprentices declaring a learning difficulty or disability (LLDD) account for 12.5% (39,300)

 

Since 2017/18, apprentices aged 25 and over have the highest share of starts. In 2017/18 the proportion of starts aged 25 or over was 41.4%, while in 2018/19 it increased to 45.7%. 

Across the same time, 19-24 starts had the second highest share (30.3% in 2017/18, and 29.5% in 2018/19). Whilst Under 19 starts had the lowest share (28.4% in 2017/18, and 24.8% in 2018/19). 

Even though the number of BAME starts is a decrease compared to 48,400 in 2018/19, the proportion of BAME starts increased from 12.5% in 2018/19 to 13.3% in 2019/20.

Similarly, despite the number of LLDD starts dropping from 46,300 in 2018/19, the proportion of total starts with a LLDD has increased from 12.0% in 2018/19 to 12.5% in 2019/20.

Subjects and levels

Apprenticeship starts

Out of 322,500 apprenticeship starts:

  • Starts supported by ASA levy funds represent 64.9% (209,300). Please see About these statistics for more information about ASA levy funds
  • Intermediate (Level 2) and advanced (Level 3) apprenticeships together make up nearly three-quarters of starts (30.8% intermediate and 43.7% advanced –240,100 starts in total).
  • Higher (Level 4 and above) starts represent 25.6% (82,500) and those at Level 6 and above represent 9.4% (30,500).
  • Science, technology, engineering and manufacturing (STEM) subjects represent 28.6% (92,300)
  • Apprenticeship standards represent 74.6% (240,700)

Apprenticeship achievements

Out of 146,900 apprenticeship achievements:

  • Intermediate (Level 2) and advanced (Level 3) apprenticeships together make up nearly 90% of all achievements (42.0% intermediate and 45.9% advanced – 129,100 achievements in total).
  • Science, technology, engineering and manufacturing (STEM) subjects represent 30.5% (44,800)
  • Business, admin and law related subjects continue to be most popular accounting for 28.6% of achievements (42,000)

Sector Subject Areas

Business, Administration and Law-related subjects continue to be the single most popular sector subject area, accounting for 29.3% of starts (94,400). This, and the next three most popular sector subjects:

  • Health, Public Services and Care;
  • Engineering and Manufacturing Technologies; and,
  • Retail and Commercial Enterprise

Account for 81.2% of starts (261,900) in 2019/20. 

The share of these subjects has declined from 83.3% in 2018/19, mainly due to a decline in retail and commercial enterprise apprenticeships. In 2018/19 there were 51,300 starts in this sector subject area (13.0%), in 2019/20 this had decreased to 33,300 starts (10.3%).

Apprenticeship Standards

Starts on standards are increasing as more standards are approved and frameworks withdrawn. Standards accounted for 74.6% of all starts in 2019/20 – an increase from 63.1% in 2018/19. From 1 August 2020 all new apprenticeship starts will be on standards.

Level 6 and above

The 30,500 Level 6 and above starts are an increase from the 22,500 starts at Level 6 and above in 2018/19 (5.7% of all 2018/19 starts).

You can create your own tables in the table builder using the subjects and levels data. The following tables offer a range of useful breakdowns as a starting point.

 

Interactive data visualisation tool

A new experimental data tool has been developed to complement the apprenticeship and traineeship release in EES. 

This new approach allows a more visual, interactive exploration of geographical data with a number of different views and ‘drilldown’ capability to allow users to investigate apprenticeship provision within different geographical areas and across providers. 

Geographical breakdowns

In 2019/20: 

  • The English region with the highest number of starts was the South East with 47,800.
  • The English region with the lowest number of starts was the North East with 18,000.
  • 3,200 starts were of apprentices who lived outside of England

You can create your own tables to view or download in the table builder using the geography data. The following table offers a range of useful breakdowns as a starting point.

 

Starts since May 2010 and May 2015

Additional tables showing parliamentary constituency, local authority and regional breakdowns of total apprenticeship starts since May 2010 and May 2015 can be found via the ‘download associated files’ link at the top of this publication (see 'supporting tables - apprenticeship starts since may 2010 and 2015 by region, local authority and pcon') 

Interactive data visualisation tool

A new experimental data tool has been developed to complement the apprenticeship and traineeship release in EES. 

This new approach allows a more visual, interactive exploration of geographical data with a number of different views and ‘drilldown’ capability to allow users to investigate apprenticeship provision within different geographical areas and across providers.

Providers

Out of 322,500 apprenticeship starts in 2019/20:

  • Private Sector Public Funded providers were responsible for 60.6% (195,600)
  • General FE colleges account for 22.8% (73,600) and other public funded (i.e. LAs and HE) providers a further 15.4% (49,800).
  • Schools, Sixth Form Colleges, and Special Colleges make up 1.1% of starts.

 

Of the 195,600 apprenticeship starts from Private Sector Public Funded, 47.3% are at the Advanced level, 27.9% are at the Intermediate level, whilst the remaining 24.8% are at the Higher level.

 

Interactive data visualisation tool

A new experimental data tool has been developed to complement the apprenticeship and traineeship release in EES. 

This new approach allows a more visual, interactive exploration of provider data with a number of different views and ‘drilldown’ capability to allow users to investigate apprenticeship provision within different geographical areas and across providers.

Public sector apprenticeships

The following statistics are classified as official statistics and have been produced in line with the Code of Practice for Statistics, rather than being classed as national statistics and approved as such by the United Kingdom Statistics Authority.

The public sector apprenticeship target

Public sector bodies in England with 250 or more staff have a target to employ an average of at least 2.3% of their staff as new apprentice starts over the period 1 April 2017 to 31 March 2021. 

For further information about the scope of the target, and how it is measured, please see the statutory guidance

The data returns made by public sector bodies are available via the ‘download associated files’ link at the top of the release (see ‘underlying data - public sector target organisations’)

Figures supplied by public sector bodies suggest that in the first three years of the target (period covering 1 April 2017 to 31 March 2020):

  • An average of 1.7% of employees started an apprenticeship
  • A combined total of over 160 thousand apprenticeship starts have been reported so far[1]
  • Apprentices are becoming increasingly popular in the public sector workforce. The percentage of employees who were apprentices rose from 2.5% to 3.1% in the latest 2019-20 period
  • Apprentices account for around one in ten of new appointments in the public sector –12.9% in 2019-20

[1]: Different samples and coverage of the collections mean that the number of starts are not directly comparable in each reporting year.

Sub-sectors

There is variation in the recruitment of apprentices in different parts of the public sector.  Over the first three years of the target: 

  • The armed forces were by far the largest employer of apprentices with an average of 7.9 per cent of employees starting an apprenticeship since April 2017.
  • Fire Authorities, at 1.8% are just ahead the national three-year average of 1.7% while the Civil Service is in line with the whole public sector, also at 1.7%
  • The police have the lowest rate of apprenticeship recruitment averaging at 0.7% since April 2017.

The Cabinet Office publish additional breakdowns of the Civil Service by each Department. The latest figures are published here.

School returns

State funded schools employing more than 250 staff and not maintained by a Local Authority (e.g. academies and academy trusts) came into scope of the public sector target from 31 March 2018. 

Data from schools that have made at least one return in 2018-19 or 2019-20 show: 

  • 1.0% of employees have started an apprenticeship since 1 April 2018 and 0.7% of all staff employed were apprentices on 31 March 2018, rising to 1.6% on 31 March 2020

These data do not include schools where the local authority is the employer.

Wider schools estimate

It is not possible to report against the target for schools as a group.  Instead, the number of apprenticeship starts in schools employing over 250 staff has been estimated using the ILR and school employment data.

To calculate a schools estimate, Apprenticeship starts have been linked to Apprenticeship Service Account (ASA) names and cross-referenced with ‘Get information about schools’, a register of schools and colleges in England (https://get-information-schools.service.gov.uk/) to produce a mapping of school and academy trust accounts. In addition, employer information has also been linked in to allow starts in local authority schools to be separated out from the linked ASA.

There were approximately 6,200 apprenticeship starts in schools between April 2019 and March 2020.

Traineeships

Traineeships are designed to be a stepping-stone to either an apprenticeship, or other work. They  were introduced in the 2013/14 academic year to equip young people with work preparation/experience, English and maths. Young people aged up to and including 24 are eligible for traineeships.  

Traineeship starts

There were 12,100 traineeship starts recorded in 2019/20 – a fall of 18.3% from 2018/19.

Of these 12,100 starts:

  • Trainees aged under 19 accounted for three-quarters of them (9,100)
  • Females accounted for 40.8% (5,000)
  • Black, Asian, and other ethnic minorities (BAME) represented 32.1% (3,900)
  • Learners declaring a learning difficulty or disability (LLDD) account for 23.0% (2,800)

Completion rates and conversion into apprenticeship starts

Of the 14,900 traineeships started in the 2018/19 academic year:

  • the proportion that were completed was 80.4% - an increase of 1.3 percentage points on the completion rate for traineeships started in during 2017/18 and an increase on the provisional rate of 79.4% first published in March 2020.
  • the proportion of traineeship starts that led to an apprenticeship start before the end of 2019/20 was 26.1% - 1.2 percentage points higher than the year before.

8,900 traineeships were started in the first two quarters of 2019/20. These have a completion rate reported so far of 79.3%. Ordinarily, these would have been completed by the end of 2019/20 and this would be final data. Flexibilities during the pandemic means that traineeships can be completed beyond the normal 6 month period. Some completions might not be picked up until the 2020/21 academic year. Rates are therefore provisional and will not be fully confirmed until November 2021.       

National Achievement Rates

National achievement rates tables 

See national achievement rates tables for more information on NARTs that were published in March 2020 for the 2018 to 2019 academic year.

As confirmed in our guidance, we will not publish any institution-level qualification achievement rates in the national achievement rates tables for the 2019 to 2020 academic year in response to Coronavirus (COVID-19). The department will still consider publishing national data for the 2019 to 2020 academic year in 2021.

Apprenticeship Service and monthly transparency data

This section contains information on the Apprenticeship Service, along with monthly breakdowns of apprenticeship starts. Links to the most up-to-date information can also be found here and are made available for transparency purposes.

Monthly apprenticeship starts

As of May 2017 significant structural changes were made to the apprenticeship funding system including the introduction of the levy and the apprenticeship service. Additionally, the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak has impacted starts in the 2019/20 academic year. 

As can be seen from the table below, monthly apprenticeship starts decreased in the months following the introduction of coronavirus restrictions on 23 March, and starts in subsequent months decreased.

Additional breakdowns of apprenticeship starts by level, age, sector subject area, framework/standard name, start month and degree apprenticeship flag are available in underlying data via the ‘download associated files’ link at the top of the publication (see ‘Underlying data - Apprenticeship monthly starts’).

Apprenticeship service statistics (UPDATED 17 DECEMBER 2020)

The following statistics are classified as official statistics and have been produced in line with the Code of Practice for Statistics, rather than being classed as national statistics and approved as such by the United Kingdom Statistics Authority.

This analysis has been included to provide transparency with regards to the apprenticeship service, an online service implemented in May 2017 that allows employers to choose and pay for apprenticeship training more easily, and its usage.

 

Apprenticeship service commitments  (UPDATED 17 DECEMBER 2020)

As of 01 December 2020, the number of commitments recorded with training start dates so far in the 2019/20 academic year was 190,540 (187,840 fully agreed), whilst 95,710 commitments (79,270 fully agreed) had training start dates so far in the 2020/21 academic year. 

Of these 95,710 commitments in 2020/21:

  • Commitments associated with the apprenticeship service accounts of levy-paying organisations represented 64.6% (61,790 commitments of which 54,660 fully agreed).
  • Commitments associated with the apprenticeship service accounts of non-levy-paying organisations represented 35.4% (33,920 commitments of which 24,610 fully agreed).

Examination of commitments from levy-paying organisations since January 2020 allows a comparison to the total commitments published last year (which would have been predominantly from levy-paying organisations).

As of 01 December 2020, the number of commitments associated with levy paying apprenticeship service accounts with training start dates so far in the 2020/21 academic year by month were:

  • August: 7,630
  • September: 27,930
  • October: 16,480
  • November: 9,030
  • December: 380

As of 10 December 2019 (an approximate comparison), the total corresponding commitments for the 2019/20 academic year by month were:

  • August: 13,000
  • September: 39,670
  • October: 20,420
  • November: 9,970
  • December: 420

Please note: prior to January 2020 it was possible for non-levy organisations to set up apprenticeship service accounts and have commitments in order to utilise levy transfers. In these cases the number of accounts and commitments set up by non-levy paying organisations is small in relation to the number of accounts/commitments set up by levy paying organisations.

Additionally, commitments may be recorded on the Apprenticeship Service system after the training start date has passed and therefore data, including those for future months (i.e. December 2020) should be treated as highly provisional and will be subject to further revision as more commitments are recorded on the apprenticeship service system. 

Since August 2018, of the 471,340 commitments:

  • learners aged 25+ numbered 242,740, those learners aged 19-24 were 139,850, whilst those for learners aged under 19 were 86,830.
  • advanced apprenticeships numbered 196,720, intermediate apprenticeships were 131,900 and higher apprenticeships were 141,600.

You can create your own tables in the table builder using the commitments data. The following table offers a useful breakdown as a starting point:

For tables based on the information published in November 2020 (commitments as reported at 16 November 2020) please see the following tables:

Apprenticeship service account registrations (UPDATED 17 DECEMBER 2020)

As at 30 November 2020, the number of registered Apprenticeship Service Accounts (ASAs) was 54,400. Levy-paying organisations had 18,600 accounts and non-levy organisations had 35,800 accounts.

Note: 

  • The number of accounts registered is based on information obtained from the apprenticeship service as of 01 December 2020.
  • The levy-paying status of an account is based on the latest information held and therefore may subsequently change.
  • Accounts with limited functionality are excluded from these figures as they cannot be used for funding purposes. Limited functionality accounts can subsequently be upgraded to full functionality, for instance when a levy-paying organisation registers their Pay As You Earn (PAYE) account number and legal entity. In these cases, the fully functional account will retain the original registration date. 
  • There is no direct relationship between apprenticeship service accounts and employers. An employer may have more than one apprenticeship service account, whilst accounts set up by levy-paying employers can be associated with more than one PAYE scheme.
  • Prior to 09 January 2020 it was possible for employers that do not pay the levy to set up apprenticeship service accounts. For instance, in order to utilise apprenticeship levy transfers. Additionally, some employers registered accounts as part of testing in preparation for the extension of the service to all employers that do not pay the levy.
  • In the November version of this release, we published that as at 31 October 2020, the number of registered Apprenticeship Service Accounts (ASAs) was 48,200. Levy-paying organisations had 18,500 accounts and non-levy organisations had 29,800 accounts.

 

Apprenticeship service reservations (UPDATED 17 DECEMBER 2020)

From 09 January 2020 the apprenticeship service was extended for all non-levy paying employers to register and use. Employers who do not pay the apprenticeship levy are able to make a funding ‘reservation’ (or have a funding ‘reservation’ made on their behalf) with respect to an apprenticeship planned to start in the following 3 months. This reservation is in advance of recruitment or an offer of an apprenticeship being made to an existing employee. This reservation ensures that employers can plan, and that funds will be available to pay for the training from the point the apprenticeship starts. Training providers can ‘support’ this by making reservations on behalf of non-levy employers. Additionally, providers with reservations that have progressed to a ‘commitment’ (with a training provider assigned) are counted as supporting.

Since 9 January 2020 when the Apprenticeship Service was opened for employers that do not pay the levy, as of 01 December the following activity has been recorded on the service: 

  • Total number of reservations made has been 49,160, of which 1,760 have been subsequently deleted and 4,490 expired. 
  • By 27,700 non-levy paying apprenticeship service accounts. 
  • Supported by 660 providers.

Note: 

  • The reservations and their associated information are based on information obtained from the apprenticeship service as of 01 December 2020.
  • Deleted reservations are those that have been actively withdrawn by the account holder, whilst expired reservations are those that have not turned into a commitment within 3 months of the apprenticeship start date detailed within the reservation.
  • In the November version of this release, we published that as of 16 November there had been 41,830 reservations (of which 1,540 had been subsequently deleted and 2,680 expired) by 23,960 non-levy paying apprenticeship service accounts, supported by 611 providers since 9 January 2020 

 

Apprenticeship service transfers (UPDATED 17 DECEMBER 2020)

In April 2018 it became possible for levy-paying organisations to transfer up to 10 per cent of the annual value of funds entering their apprenticeship service account to other organisations via the apprenticeship service. This increased to 25 per cent from April 2019.

As of 01 December 2020, there have been 7,840 apprenticeship service commitments entered into the apprenticeship service (since August 2018) where the transfer of funds between ASAs has been approved.  A further 750 commitments were pending approval for the transfer of funds. 

  • Of these 7,840 transferred commitments, 34.5% (2,710) were transfers to levy-paying organisations and 65.5% (5,140) were transfers to non-levy-paying organisations.

As of 11 November 2020, 

  • the number of fully agreed transferred commitments that have so far been recorded as apprenticeship starts on the Individualised Learner Record (ILR) in the 2019/20 academic year was 4,600.
  • the number of fully agreed transferred commitments that have so far been recorded as apprenticeship starts on the ILR in the 2018/19 academic year was 650.

In the November version of this release, we published:

  • as of 16 November 2020, there had been 7,670 apprenticeship service commitments where the transfer of funds between ASAs has been approved (and 750 commitments pending approval. Of these 7,670 transferred commitments, 34.1% (2,610) were transfers to levy-paying organisations and 65.9% (5,060) were transfers to non-levy-paying organisations.
  • As of 02 November 2020, the number of fully agreed transferred commitments that have so far been recorded as apprenticeship starts on the ILR in the 2019/20 academic year was 4,630 and in the 2018/19 academic year was 670.

Please note that providers may not record learners immediately on the ILR, so a lag may occur between a commitment being recorded in the apprenticeship service and the corresponding commitment being recorded as a start on the ILR.

Additionally, as commitments can be recorded/amended on the apprenticeship service system after the transfer approval date has passed, all data should be treated as provisional. Data is only fully captured when providers confirm details in the ILR. In the interests of transparency, what is known at this point of reporting has been included where possible.

Additional analysis

The following statistics are classified as official statistics and have been produced in line with the Code of Practice for Statistics, rather than being classed as national statistics and approved as such by the United Kingdom Statistics Authority.

This analysis has been included to provide wider contextual information on the apprenticeship programme as a whole.

Comparisons of measures during the period affected by the COVID-19 lockdown                                               

For the period reported between 23 March and 31 July 2020 and compared to the same period in 2019 (Table 1):

  • participation fell by 27.8% - to 75,870 from 105,040
  • starts fell by 45.5% - to 60,860 from 111,570
  • achievements show a fall of 31.6% - to 46,930 from 68,570

These decreases are all significantly larger than seen in the rest of the academic year before COVID-19 restrictions. In the period between 1 August 2019 and 22 March 2020 and compared to the same period in 2018/19:

  • participation increased by 3.7%
  • starts fell by 7.1%
  • achievements fell by 14.3%

 

Table 1: Comparisons of participation, starts and achievements before and after the COVID-19 period 

 2018/192019/20
 August to 22nd MarchMarch 23rd to JulyAugust to 22nd MarchMarch 23rd to July
Total apprenticeship participation647,520105,040671,22075,870
Total apprenticeship starts281,810111,570261,67060,860
Total apprenticeship achievements116,58068,57099,97046,930

Starts during the period affected by the COVID-19 lockdown (UPDATED 17 DECEMBER 2020)          

There were 60,860 apprenticeship starts reported between 23 March and 31 July 2020. That represents a 45.5% drop compared to the 111,570 reported for the same period last year. 

Of the starts reported between 23 March and 31 July 2020 (Table 2):

  • Learners aged 25 and over make up 61.6% of starts; this was 54.5% in the previous year.
  • Intermediate apprenticeships accounted for 25.6% of starts; this was 36.1% in 2018/19.
  • Higher apprenticeships accounted for 31.4% of starts; this was 17.7% in 2018/19.
  • Apprenticeships started by BAME learners make up 15.6% of starts; this was 13.9% in 2018/19
  • Apprenticeships started by LLDD learners make up 10.7% of starts; this was 11.5% in 2018/19
  • Business, Administration and Law, and Health, Public Services and Care were the dominant sector subject areas comprising 67.5% of starts in 2019/20. These were also the main sector subject areas the previous year, but they represented a smaller proportion of starts (62.0%).
  • The South East was the largest English region accounting for 15.6% of starts. In 2018/19 it accounted for 14.2%.

To note also, starts reported for the period August 2019 to February 2020 (246,300) were down by 6.4% on the equivalent period in 2018/19 (263,100), with starts in all months (except September) being lower than those reported at the same point in 2018/19.

 

Impact of the period affected by the COVID-19 lockdown on starts in different groups (NEW FOR 17 DECEMBER 2020)

The COVID-19 lockdown period saw a disproportionate negative impact on apprenticeship starts for certain groups, particularly those aged under 19, those starting an intermediate apprenticeships and apprenticeships in retail. 

There was also a small fall in the share of starts by learners with learning difficulties/disabilities (LLDD) but an increase in share of BAME learner starts during lockdown.

Comparing the period prior to lockdown (1 August 2019 to 22 March 2020) to the period during lockdown (23 March 2020 to 31 July 2020) and with the equivalent periods in 2018/19: 

  • Under 19s made up 26.8% of starts before 23 March 2020 – 1.3 percentage points lower than in the same period in 2018/19 (28.0%). During lockdown, under 19s made up 10.3% of starts – 6.5 percentage points lower than in 2018/19 (16.8%).
  • Intermediate apprenticeships made up 32.0% of starts prior to lockdown – 4.7 percentage points lower than for the same period in 2018/19 (36.7%). During lockdown, intermediate apprenticeships made up 25.6% - 10.5 percentage points lower than in 2018/19 (36.1%).
  • The retail and commercial enterprise subject area made up 11.0% of starts prior to lockdown – 1.3 percentage points lower than for the same period in 2018/19 (12.3%). During lockdown, retail made up 7.6% of starts – 7.3 percentage points lower than in 2018/19 (14.9%).
  • LLDD learners made up 12.9% of starts before prior to lockdown – up 0.7 percentage points on the same period in 2018/19 (12.2%). During lockdown, LLDD learners made up 10.7% of starts – 0.8 percentage points lower than in 2018/19 (11.5%)
  • BAME learners made up 12.8% of starts prior to lockdown – 0.8 percentage points higher than for the same period in 2018/19. During lockdown, BAME learners made up 15.6% of starts – 1.7 percentage points higher than in 2018/19 (13.9%)

 

Table 2: Apprenticeship starts from 1 August to 22 March and from 23 March to 31 July in 2018/19 and 2019/20

  Pre-lockdown period (1 August to 22 March)Lockdown period (23 March to 31 July)
  2018/19% of 2018/19 total2019/20% of 2019/20 total2018/19% of 2018/19 total2019/20% of 2019/20 total
Total starts281,810 261,670 111,570 60,860 
AgeUnder 1978,99028.0%70,01026.8%18,71016.8%6,27010.3%
19-2483,93029.8%78,19029.9%32,07028.7%17,10028.1%
25+118,89042.2%113,48043.4%60,79054.5%37,49061.6%
LevelIntermediate103,30036.7%83,67032.0%40,30036.1%15,55025.6%
Advanced123,19043.7%114,67043.8%51,54046.2%26,17043.0%
Higher55,32019.6%63,33024.2%19,74017.7%19,13031.4%
BAMEYes33,15012.0%32,83012.8%15,24013.9%9,31015.6%
No243,82088.0%223,77087.2%94,51086.1%50,20084.4%
LLDDYes33,70012.2%32,91012.9%12,56011.5%6,34010.7%
No241,71087.8%222,63087.1%96,54088.5%52,82089.3%
Sector subject areaAgriculture, Horticulture and Animal Care5,2401.9%5,1102.0%1,4101.3%7801.3%
Arts, Media and Publishing740*990*250*250*
Business, Administration and Law84,49030.0%75,19028.7%34,16030.6%19,25031.6%
Construction, Planning and the Built Environment20,0507.1%20,6007.9%2,4802.2%1,3202.2%
Education and Training5,4101.9%6,3602.4%1,7001.5%1,5302.5%
Engineering and Manufacturing Technologies48,42017.2%45,40017.4%11,54010.3%6,60010.8%
Health, Public Services and Care62,68022.2%60,36023.1%35,04031.4%21,84035.9%
Information and Communication Technology15,0305.3%14,4905.5%6,0805.4%3,7406.1%
Leisure, Travel and Tourism4,9401.8%4,2301.6%2,2802.0%9101.5%
Retail and Commercial Enterprise34,68012.3%28,70011.0%16,63014.9%4,6307.6%
Science and Mathematics120*160*10*20*
Social Sciences-*90*-*-*
RegionEast Midlands25,9109.2%23,5509.0%10,0009.0%5,0108.2%
East of England27,9309.9%26,54010.1%10,3309.3%5,7909.5%
London28,28010.0%26,98010.3%12,47011.2%6,91011.4%
North East16,8506.0%14,8105.7%6,4105.7%3,2005.3%
North West41,85014.8%38,65014.8%16,44014.7%8,30013.6%
Other2,6000.9%2,5501.0%1,1401.0%6801.1%
South East40,45014.4%38,30014.6%15,86014.2%9,52015.6%
South West32,24011.4%30,50011.7%11,69010.5%6,60010.8%
West Midlands32,28011.5%29,61011.3%13,39012.0%7,31012.0%
Yorkshire and The Humber33,43011.9%30,19011.5%13,84012.4%7,53012.4%

 

Achievements during the period affected by the COVID-19 lockdown (NEW FOR 17 DECEMBER 2020)          

There were 46,930 apprenticeship achievements reported between 23 March and 31 July 2020. That represents a 31.6% drop compared to the 68,570 reported for the same period last year. 

Of the achievements reported between 23 March and 31 July 2020 (Table 3):

  • Learners aged 25 and over make up 43.2% of achievements; this was 38.5% in the previous year.
  • Intermediate apprenticeships accounted for 34.0% of achievements; this was 43.9% in 2018/19.
  • Higher apprenticeships accounted for 16.9% of achievements; this was 8.8% in 2018/19.
  • Apprenticeships achieved by BAME learners make up 11.5% of achievements; this was 10.5% in 2018/19
  • Apprenticeships achieved by LLDD learners make up 11.3% of achievements; this was 11.2% in 2018/19
  • Business, Administration and Law, and Health, Public Services and Care were the dominant sector subject areas comprising 59.6% of achievements in 2019/20. These were also the main sector subject areas the previous year, but they represented a smaller proportion of achievements (49.1%).
  • The North West was the largest English region of achievements, accounting for 15.8% of achievements. In 2018/19 it accounted for 15.7%.

To note also, achievements reported for the period August 2019 to February 2020 (99,970) were down by 14.3% on the equivalent period in 2018/19 (116,580), with achievements being lower than those reported at the same point in 2018/19.

 

Table 3: Apprenticeship achievements from 1 August to 22 March and from 23 March to 31 July in 2018/19 and 2019/20

  Pre-lockdown period (1 August to 22 March)Lockdown period (23 March to 31 July)
  2018/19% of 2018/19 total2019/20% of 2019/20 total2018/19% of 2018/19 total2019/20% of 2019/20 total
Total achievements116,580 99,970 68,570 46,930 
AgeUnder 1937,54032.2%31,68031.7%20,19029.4%11,74025.0%
19-2436,58031.4%32,92032.9%21,97032.0%14,90031.8%
25+42,45036.4%35,37035.4%26,41038.5%20,29043.2%
LevelIntermediate56,07048.1%45,65045.7%30,08043.9%15,98034.0%
Advanced52,61045.1%44,42044.4%32,49047.4%23,04049.1%
Higher7,9006.8%9,9009.9%6,0008.8%7,91016.9%
BAMEYes11,91010.3%9,8009.9%7,10010.5%5,35011.5%
No103,70089.7%89,07090.1%60,69089.5%41,10088.5%
LLDDYes12,50010.9%11,31011.5%7,52011.2%5,14011.3%
No102,44089.1%87,05088.5%59,56088.8%40,51088.7%
Sector subject areaAgriculture, Horticulture and Animal Care2,7802.4%1,9301.9%1,3201.9%6901.5%
Arts, Media and Publishing370*350*180*150*
Business, Administration and Law29,37025.2%27,18027.2%16,99024.8%14,79031.5%
Construction, Planning and the Built Environment6,9005.9%6,7506.8%4,1306.0%2,7205.8%
Education and Training2,9402.5%2,5002.5%1,1601.7%1,1802.5%
Engineering and Manufacturing Technologies22,41019.2%19,53019.5%13,40019.5%6,50013.8%
Health, Public Services and Care30,17025.9%21,10021.1%16,66024.3%13,20028.1%
Information and Communication Technology4,6504.0%5,7605.8%3,5905.2%3,4707.4%
Leisure, Travel and Tourism3,6503.1%2,2002.2%2,8804.2%1,0902.3%
Retail and Commercial Enterprise13,23011.4%12,62012.6%8,22012.0%3,1506.7%
Science and Mathematics120*50*50*10*
RegionEast Midlands10,9109.4%9,6009.6%6,0908.9%4,1008.7%
East of England10,9909.4%9,7009.7%6,3909.3%4,6209.8%
London9,6108.2%8,1208.1%6,1409.0%4,74010.1%
North East7,9606.8%6,2706.3%4,4406.5%2,9906.4%
North West18,32015.7%14,82014.8%10,80015.7%7,40015.8%
Other9300.8%7800.8%6801.0%4100.9%
South East15,93013.7%14,38014.4%9,91014.5%6,52013.9%
South West13,93012.0%12,41012.4%8,16011.9%5,27011.2%
West Midlands14,04012.0%11,96012.0%7,76011.3%5,18011.0%
Yorkshire and The Humber13,96012.0%11,94011.9%8,21012.0%5,71012.2%

 

Apprenticeship incentive payments (UPDATED 17 DECEMBER 2020)

The government introduced new incentive payments in August to support employers to hire new apprentices between 01 August 2020 and 31 January 2021. Employers are eligible to apply for this incentive if the employee is new to the company. This can include recruiting an apprentice who has been made redundant by another employer.

The incentive scheme will give employers who hire apprentices either £2,000 for apprentices aged 16 to 24 or £1,500 for apprentices aged 25 and over. 

50% of the payment is made 90 days after an apprentice starts in training, and the remaining amount is paid after completion of 365 days of the apprenticeship. The payments for the incentive are subject to the apprentice completing the 90 days and 365 days of the apprenticeship.

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/incentive-payments-for-hiring-a-new-apprentice

When first published in November, we stated that as of 12th November 2020, the number of apprentices recorded on the Apprenticeship Service for whom incentive claims have been submitted by employers totalled 8,000.

As of 01 December 2020, the number of apprentices recorded on the Apprenticeship Service for whom incentive claims have been submitted by employers totalled 11,520:

  • The number of apprenticeship service accounts who made the submissions for incentive payments was 4,450.
  • The proportion of the submissions for those aged between 16 and 24, and 25 or over are 83% and 17% respectively (Table 4).
  • The proportions by apprenticeship level (Table 5):
  1. Intermediate (level 2) accounted for 33%.
  2. Advanced (level 3) accounted for 45%.
  3. Higher (level 4+) accounted for 22%.
  • By month, planned starts for apprentices who had been submitted for an incentive were (Tables 4 and 5):
  1. August: 11%.
  2. September: 52%.
  3. October: 27%.
  4. November: 9%
  5. December and January 2021: <1%.

 

Table 4: Table showing the number of planned starts on the apprenticeship incentive scheme by month and age category

 

Month16-2425+All
Aug-209603101,270
Sep-204,9601,0406,000
Oct-202,6604603,110
Nov-209401601,090
Dec-20201030
Jan-2120020
Total9,5501,97011,520

Table 5: Table showing the number of planned starts on the apprenticeship incentive scheme by month and level category

MonthLevel 2Level 3Level 4Level 5Level 6Level 7All
Aug-204805304010160501,270
Sep-201,7502,700380807203706,000
Oct-201,1301,34020070290803,110
Nov-2041058070102001,090
Dec-201020000030
Jan-210100010020
Total3,7705,1806901701,21050011,520

 

Employers reporting the withdrawal of apprentices due to redundancy during COVID (UPDATED 17 DECEMBER 2020)

From 30 July 2020, employers have been able to record on the Apprenticeship Service (AS) if an apprenticeship has ended due to a redundancy.  This will provide more accurate and timely data on redundancies than that captured via the ‘withdrawal reason’ on the ILR, and will be a reliable ongoing source of data. 

Currently this data does not capture all apprenticeships as not all non-levy employers are using the AS currently, but from 1st April 2021 all new starts must be reported and managed through the AS.  Additionally, employers can record information about redundancies at a later date on the AS, therefore the information can suffer from ‘data lag’ with information being recorded weeks or months after the redundancy actually happened. 

When first published in November, we stated that as of 12 November 2020, the number of apprenticeship redundancies reported so far from August was 1,190.

As of 01 December 2020, the number of apprenticeship redundancies reported so far from August was 1,360, of which: 

  • The proportions by apprenticeship level were (Table 6):
  1. Intermediate (level 2): 18%
  2. Advanced (level 3): 57%
  3. Higher (level 4+): 25%
  • The proportion by age group was (Table 7):
  1. Under 19: 23%
  2. 19-24: 34%
  3. 25 and over: 43%
  • Levy paying organisations accounted for 94%

In addition to the 1,360 redundancies, a further 940 redundancies were reported in 2020 prior to August, i.e. the new reporting feature has captured some delayed reporting prior to August. As it was not possible for an employer to provide redundancy as a reason for an apprenticeship ending prior to 30th July, data for months before August are underrepresented and have been included for transparency only.

 

Table 6: Total number of apprenticeship redundancies by month the apprentice was made redundant and level of apprentice reported in the AS system as of 01 December 2020

MonthApprenticeship levelMonth total
Intermediate AdvancedHigher
August80420140640
September100200100390
October6011080260
November20502080
Grand Total2507803401360

Table 7: Total number of apprenticeship redundancies by month the apprentice was made redundant and age of apprentice reported in the AS system as of 01 December 2020

MonthAge of ApprenticeMonth total
Under 1919-2425+
August120260260640
September100120170390
October7070120260
November20204080
Grand Total3104705901360

Additional information

To further support apprentices who have been made redundant, or who are at risk of redundancy, we have introduced the Redundancy Support Service for Apprentices (ReSSA).

The service is made up of three main elements:

  • Providing apprentices with advice and guidance on the impact of redundancy
  • Signposting apprentices to local and national support services
  • An apprenticeship vacancy sharing service to make redundant apprentices aware of new opportunities

https://help.apprenticeships.education.gov.uk/hc/en-gb/articles/360015630040-Redundancy-Support-Service-for-Apprentices

 

Breaks and withdrawals during the period affected by COVID-19 lockdown

Apprentices may take a break in learning where they plan to return to the same apprenticeship programme. The decision to take a break in learning, the reason for the break and its expected duration must be agreed with the employer. This could include medical treatment, parental leave or leave for other personal reasons. Breaks in learning must be reported on the ILR and the employer should revise the apprenticeship agreement if required. A break in learning should not be recorded for short term breaks such as holidays, or when employment or an apprenticeship agreement has been terminated. 

In addition to breaks in learning, the ILR hold a field to record whether a learner has ‘withdrawn’ from an apprenticeship. 

Analysis of breaks of learning in 2019/20 shows that:

  • more breaks have been recorded in 2019/20 compared to previous years; 77,540 breaks were recorded (approximately 1 in 10 of those participating) compared to 28,080 in 2018/19 and 33,830 in 2017/18 (around 1 in 25 participants).
  • the majority of breaks in 2019/20 occurred after the COVID-19 restrictions were imposed on 23 March 2020 – (70%, or 54,330 breaks). This compares to 39% in 2018/19 and 35% in 2017/18.
  • Apprentices aged 25 and over were more likely to have a break in learning – approximately 13% of those participating, compared to 8% for 19-24s and 6% for Under 19s

Analysis of the withdrawal field in 2019/20 shows that:

  • approximately 15% of participating learners (113,430) withdrew from their apprenticeship – in line with previous years.
  • relatively fewer withdrew in the period affected by COVID-19 restrictions (27% of withdrawals) compared to the same period in previous years (around a third in 2017/18 and 2018/19). This was balanced out by relatively more withdrawing before 23 March in 2019/20 compared to 2017/18 and 2018/19.

 

Apprenticeship adverts and vacancies (UPDATED 17 DECEMBER 2020)

The apprenticeship adverts and vacancies in this section are as published on the Find An Apprenticeship (FAA) website. They represent only a subset of the total number of vacancies available across the marketplace, as many apprenticeships are not advertised through this website.                                                           

Monthly vacancies published on the Find An Apprenticeship website were generally lower in the 2019/20 and 2020/21 academic years compared to the same month the year before (Table 8)

In the months prior to the introduction of coronavirus restrictions (August 2019 to February 2020), monthly vacancies, with the exception of February 2020, were between 19 and 33 per cent below the equivalent figures in 2018/19. 

Vacancies in the months after coronavirus restrictions were implemented (on 23 March) saw a large fall compared to the previous year - down by over 80 per cent in April and May and by two thirds in June. 

Between September and November, vacancies have remained lower than previous years but were more in line with the differences seen prior to restrictions. 

September and October vacancies were both 17% lower than in 2019, whilst November 2020 vacancies were 12% below 2019.

 

Apprenticeship adverts in the months after coronavirus restrictions were implemented (on 23 March) showed large falls compared to the previous year - down by over 88 per cent in April and May 2020 and by nearly three quarters in June 2020. 

Advert numbers have recovered a little from that point but are still lower than in the previous year. The latest November numbers were a fifth lower than in 2019.   

Additional information on monthly adverts and vacancies by level can be found in the ‘Explore data’ tab underneath the table. Alternatively the following tables offer a range of useful breakdowns as a starting point.  

Skills Tool Kit (Experimental Statistics - UPDATED 17 DECEMBER 2020) 

The Skills Toolkit was launched on 28 April 2020 to help people build their skills during the coronavirus outbreak and beyond. 

As of 29 November 2020 there have been 1,517,230 page views on the skills toolkit website. This data is reported as a part of systems monitoring. Some users might access the page from more than one device and, if so, will be counted more than once in the figures.

Previously we published that as of 30 September 2020 there had been 97,600 course registrations, whilst as of 01 November 2020 there had been an estimated 119,000 course registrations.  As of 29 November 2020 there have been an estimated 132,000 course registrations. 

Please note:

  • These are experimental statistics and rely on website analytics and the method of processing these is subject to change.
  • Course providers collect data on registrations to their courses through various methods and separately submit returns to the Department for Education relating to The Skills Toolkit.  These returns are then assessed and aggregated.
  • Estimates are provisional as there may be a lag in data reporting.
  • Some providers may be unable to identify if course registrations resulted from ‘The Skills Toolkit’ campaign or other means. The numbers provided only include data which, are deemed robust enough for including at this stage, so may not including some genuine registrations and is likely to represent an undercount of the true number.
  • All providers are asked to outline their methods of reporting and explain why they are confident that the figures they provide represent an accurate view of the number of course registrations they have received, as a result of The Skills Toolkit.  Providers are asked to report a change in their methods of reporting or any errors/issues they encounter as quickly as possible. Provider reports are checked for unusual patterns.
  • Since the July update to this release where course providers collectively reported 136,000 course registrations a month after the Toolkit was launched, some course providers have made The Skills Toolkit team aware of issues in their reporting. For example, providers have made changes to their analytics software and to the structure of their websites affecting the number of course starts they report. As a result, the number of registrations was revised down in our October release to be, as of 30 September 2020 there have been 97,615 course registrations and 1,100,260 page views.
  • As part of the expansion of The Skills Toolkit in September 2020, we improved the reporting and quality assurance processes. As part of this work we have identified issues with 12 courses and have removed these from our reported number of registrations.
  • As a result we are now collecting more robust estimates of registrations, but we continue to work with providers on improving this further. As a result we are now collecting more robust estimates of registrations, but we continue to work with providers on improving this further.

 

Find apprenticeship training      

For employers looking to take on apprentices, see find apprenticeship training. 

The service can be used to: 

  • Search for apprenticeship training by job role or keyword
  • Find training providers who offer the apprenticeship training you choose
  • Find a named training provider you want to use

 

Interactive data visualisation tool

This new experimental data tool has been developed to complement the apprenticeship and traineeship release in EES. 

This new approach offers users a more visual, interactive presentation of our published data, with a number of different views on to data and ‘drilldown’ capability to allow users to investigate different types of FE provision within different geographical areas and across providers. 

Find my data and feedback

This section provides guidance on finding data and providing feedback. 

Find my data 

To find information on topics of interest, expand the content sections i.e. Subjects and levels, Geographical breakdowns, Providers. In each section, there will be:

  • Tables/charts and summary commentary on the relevant area
  • Links to additional pre-prepared tables

You can also create your own tables through the table tool or modify the pre- prepared tables which use the same files. 

At the top of the release, there is a link ‘download associated files’ which includes:

  • A user guide to FE and skills statistics
  • Data that sits underneath the release
  • Supporting tables created outside the EES platform
  • Underlying CSV files that contain richer base data, and associated metadata files

The standard period for data in the release is from 2014/15 to 2019/20. However, due to performance limitations, some files contain a shorter period of data than the standard full six years. 

If you are looking for historic data not available in this release, see the FE data library where there is more than six years’ worth of data.   

To find previous publications on apprenticeships and skills see the Statistics: further education and skills collection.

The latest FE and skills statistics can be found here Further education and skills.  

Feedback

This release is a completely new approach to publishing our data and statistics which we are looking to evolve overtime. 

As a result, your feedback is important to help us improve and develop.

To provide feedback on this release, content, or functionality, and for any other queries, please contact the FE statistics mailbox. 

Email: FE.OFFICIALSTATISTICS@education.gov.uk

We will also be doing some proactive user research, the details of which will be provided in the apprenticeship and traineeships January 2021 release. 

Help and support

Methodology

Find out how and why we collect, process and publish these statistics

National statistics

The United Kingdom Statistics Authority designated these statistics as National Statistics in accordance with the Statistics and Registration Service Act 2007 and signifying compliance with the Code of Practice for Statistics.

Designation signifying their compliance with the authority's Code of Practice for Statistics which broadly means these statistics are:

  • managed impartially and objectively in the public interest
  • meet identified user needs
  • produced according to sound methods
  • well explained and readily accessible

Once designated as National Statistics it's a statutory requirement for statistics to follow and comply with the Code of Practice for Statistics to be observed.

Find out more about the standards we follow to produce these statistics through our Standards for official statistics published by DfE guidance.

Contact us

Ask questions and provide feedback

If you have a specific enquiry about Apprenticeships and traineeships statistics and data:

FE Stats Dissemination

Email
FE.OFFICIALSTATISTICS@education.gov.uk

Telephone: Matthew Rolfe
020 77838300

Press office

If you have a media enquiry:

Telephone
020 7783 8300

Public enquiries

If you have a general enquiry about the Department for Education (DfE) or education:

Telephone
037 0000 2288

Opening times:
Monday to Friday from 9.30am to 5pm (excluding bank holidays)