We are delighted to announce that our Global Online MBA and Weekend MBA programmes are accessible by employees wishing to invest apprenticeship levy funds to pay for their employers to undertake elite-level business management education.

What is the apprenticeship levy?

The apprenticeship levy, which came into effect in April 2017, is a government policy which requires employers with a pay bill over £3 million to pay the levy rate so they can develop their workforce. The levy rate is 0.5% of an employer’s annual pay bill and businesses receive a £15,000 allowance to offset against their payment.

The objective of the levy is to increase the quantity and quality of apprenticeships in England, including a commitment to an additional three million apprenticeship starts in England by 2020.

We list four things you need to know about the apprenticeship levy and how it benefits employers, incoming students and society as a whole.

1. The apprenticeship levy benefits employers

The apprenticeship levy is a fantastic opportunity for employers to upskill their workforce with employers gaining an internationally recognised MBA from a top institution. Employers can use their apprenticeship levy funds to partially pay the fees and put them through our part-time MBA programmes.

Their employees will be able to apply their learnings immediately as they progress through our programmes, adding extra value and skills to their role. This upskilling is fantastic for employers to ensure they are leaders in a technology-driven world.

2. The levy is fantastic for prospective students

The apprenticeship levy opens up a great opportunity for incoming students to take advantage of this scheme and join the Global Online MBA and Weekend MBA programmes here at the Business School.

An MBA is a wonderful investment, albeit an expensive one, and the scheme lessens the financial load. It gives employees the opportunity to simultaneously advance their career while gaining new skills, who otherwise might not be able to without this support.

Both programmes have been mapped to the Level 7 Senior Leaders Master’s Degree standard, meaning that up to £18,000 of levy funding can contribute towards their cost. Students accessing the programme via this route will receive support from the Chartered Management Institute throughout the period of their study, and receive the additional award of Chartered Manager status alongside their MBA.

Apprenticeship Levy

3. It’s helping our economy by boosting productivity

The apprenticeship levy addresses the national concern around productivity, which affects not only employers but the economy at large. Petra Wilton, Director of Strategy at the Chartered Institute of Management (CMI) said that poor management and leadership costs businesses £84 billion each year.

In an increasingly digital world, we are lacking the skills at the management, leadership and boardroom level to manage teams in this new environment. Apprenticeships are a productive and effective way for businesses to grow a motivated and skilled workforce.

Further, the National Apprentice Survey wrote, “Employers who have an established apprenticeship programme reported that productivity in their workplace had improved by 76% whilst 75% reported that apprenticeships improved the quality of their product or service.”

Fiona Sandford, Director of Strategic Projects at Imperial College Business School says:

A lot of the concern around productivity is due to a skills gap at the management level. At Imperial, we are uniquely suited at being able to help employers upskill their employees so that they can increase productivity and better manage teams in this digital world.

In helping to boost productivity, the apprenticeship levy benefits both business and the wider economy.

4. The levy helps achieve our entrepreneurship and innovation goals

Our goal at the Business School is to develop the future leaders of society to have an entrepreneurial mindset and the skills to lead in a technology-driven world. As technological advancements disrupt the working landscape, it’s important that our students are able to lead in this environment.

Innovation is a key part of growing the UK economy, and the apprenticeship levy helps us to realise our objective both in terms of managing in a digital world and helping entrepreneurs improve their management skillset. Fiona Sandford says:

We’re at a particularly useful place to help employers think about how they manage and lead either people with an entrepreneurial or intrapreneurial skillset, how they help entrepreneurs upscale their businesses, and help young team leaders better manage analysts focused on data and other digital skills.

On the Global Online MBA, a core module on Corporate Innovation provides students with an understanding of the complexities of innovation in established companies. The Innovation and Entrepreneurship module is part of the Weekend MBA core curriculum. It offers students an opportunity to build their knowledge, skills and experience in this important topic which covers innovation, entrepreneurship and design as core elements.

There are many opportunities to further build these skills on the programmes via our wide elective portfolio including the Entrepreneurial Journey. These skills differentiate our graduates and are key to why they are the future leaders of society.