Kickstart Scheme launched following extensive input from British Chambers of Commerce

Tuesday, 8 September 2020

The Treasury’s much anticipated Kickstart scheme has been launched to help young people into employment.   It is a core part of the UK Government’s Plan for Jobs and it is intended to stop a massive rise in unemployment amongst young people.  The British Chambers of Commerce has played a critical role in shaping the £2bn programme, with BCC policy experts and staff from individual chambers of commerce across the country regularly meeting DWP Ministers and civil servants and advising them how to design the programme so it gives the best possible opportunity for young people to secure valuable work experience and encourages widespread participation across the business community.   

How Kickstart works

  • It applies in Scotland, as well as England and Wales
  • Young people aged 16 to 24 who are on Universal Credit can participate and undertake a six-month work placement
  • Additional support to look for long-term work, including career advice and setting goals, help with CV and interview preparations, should also be part of the placement
  • Any business can offer a job and there is no limit on the number of placements an individual employer can provide, so long as they are new jobs that do not displace or replace existing workers
  • Funding available for each job will cover 100% of the relevant National Minimum Wage for 25 hours a week, plus employer National Insurance and pension contributions
  • There is also £1,500 per job placement available for setup costs, support and training
  • Applications are submitted through an online portal
  • Employers who can offer 30 or more placements can apply directly
  • Businesses who are offering less than 30 places must apply via a Representative, who will collate jobs across multiple businesses and submit a single application covering all of them
  • Representatives get £300 of funding to cover their administrative costs.

Critical role for ‘Representatives’

Because the majority of businesses are SMEs and not be able to offer 30 or more Kickstart jobs, they will have to rely on a Representative to apply on their behalf by collating applications from multiple employers and submitting them all to the DWP as a single application.   The Representative must have:

  • Experience of managing partnership agreements with third parties
  • Robust governance and financial processes to manage the application
  • Details of the job placements proposed by the group of employers they are applying on behalf of
  • Information about the support they plan to offer the young people.

How Fife Chamber can help you be part of Kickstart 

  • Let us know if you are a Chamber member and you are registered as a Representative: we can refer organisations who have a job to you, so you can apply on their behalf
  • Tell us if you have a job for a young person, whether or not you are a Fife Chamber member, and you cannot apply directly: we can pass your details on to Chamber members or our other trusted partners who are registered as a representative, so they can include you in their group application
  • Let us know if you encounter any practical shortcomings or design weaknesses during your application process: we can relay this to our colleagues at the BCC who will be able to take them up at the highest levels of the DWP to get them resolved.

Useful Links

  • Check here to see if you can apply for a grant
  • Click here to apply for a grant
  • Check here if you can apply for a grant as a Representative
  • Email Alan Mitchell if you have a job or you are registered as a Representative