How much can you earn as an apprentice and once you have completed your training?
For many years apprenticeships have had stigma attached to them for being relatively low paid positions, with many believing that companies use apprentices for cheap labour. However this is not the case, apprenticeships offer a good wage with the benefits of free training to attain recognised qualifications and saves you being debt free unlike going to university.
Over the last few years there has been a lot of focus on the apprentice wage and the government has periodically increased the national minimum wage for apprentices which currently stands at £3.90 per hour which is due to increase to £4.15 in April. This is a great step in the right direction and offers a basic living wage to apprentices while they earn on the job.
The National Minimum Wage for apprentices is the minimum to be paid to apprentices in their first year of their apprenticeship or if you are under the age of 18yrs, after this employers must follow the required apprentice wage structure, as details below.
This means that a 25-year-old working 40 hours a week will have a salary of approximately £18,136 a year, or £8.72 an hour from April. For an 18 to 20-year-old, the figures are £6.45 an hour or approximately £13,416 a year.
Now you may be thinking £3.90 is low but bare in mind this is a guideline for employers and a minimum requirement. Most if not all employers tend to pay higher than this for many reasons one being the competition to attract apprentices especially if they are offering apprenticeships in London. Other reasons can include their equal pay policies or the cost of living in general.
What could I earn after I have completed my apprenticeship?
This is the million dollar question, to help you answer this we have selected a few apprenticeships to give you a guideline to what you could expect to earn once you have qualified through the apprenticeship route.
To qualify as a Plumber you would only need to achieve an NVQ Level 2 as a minimum to be able to carry out general plumbing duties unsupervised. Once you have achieved this you may decide to train toward your Level 3 which includes heating. Plumbing salaries across the UK vary for plumbers with the average being £27,085.83 and in London the average salary is £31,282.29.
This is such a difficult sector to pin point exact averages due to the many apprenticeship opportunities within this sector. You can become an apprentice and train in anything from bricklaying, quantity surveying to construction project management. On average bricklayers are paid around £30,000 per annum and qualified project managers can earn anything upwards of £40,000 per annum.
If you are considering working for the NHS then an apprenticeship is a great way to start. The NHS offer many different apprenticeship opportunities such as Health Care Assistant which offer on average a salary of £18,333.93 across the UK with a slightly higher average for London. Stepping into the NHS through the apprenticeship route is a great way to learn on the job training and getting used to the working environment.
Before you start an apprenticeship we recommend you take some time to research the industry sector and the different types of apprenticeships on off and whether they fit your requirements now and in the future. There are many tools on the internet to support you with this such as salary checking tools which can provide information on the average salaries on offer by checking advertised jobs across multiple jobsites.