The Kickstart Scheme was introduced by the Chancellor in his Plan for Jobs on 08 July 2020, and applications launched last week.
It has been established for young people on Universal Credit aged between 16 and 24, who are at risk of long-term unemployment. Under the scheme, the Government will pay the wages of workers meeting these criteria for a period of six months, while they complete a “job placement”.
How does the Kickstart Scheme work?
The wages for people enrolled on the Kickstart Scheme will be paid from an initial fund of £2 billion. There will be no cap on the number of placements available.
The Government will fully fund each “Kickstart” job – paying 100% of the age-relevant National Minimum Wage, National Insurance and pension contributions for 25 hours a week.
Employers will be able to top up this wage, while the Government will also pay employers £1500 to set up support and training for those on a Kickstart placement, as well as helping pay for uniforms and other set-up costs.
- Any business of any size can apply
- The placements must be new jobs, i.e they can’t have been planned vacancies or existing vacancies and should not lead to the bumping off of existing employees from their roles
- The placements must offer a minimum of 25 hours per week, for 6 months and should not require extensive training before an applicant can start work
- Workers must be paid National Minimum Wage for their age group