08 July 2020
Chancellor Summer Statement Employment Update 8 July 2020
The Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, announced new support for employers and employees in his summer statement today. The Chancellor hopes that these new measures will protect jobs, avoid mass youth unemployment and support the economy as the country moves into a new normal after COVID-19.
Furlough and the job retention bonus
One of the key measures is the introduction of a job retention bonus. The Government will pay a one-off bonus of £1,000 to employers for each of their furloughed employees who returns to work and remains continuously employed until 31 January 2021. While further details of the scheme are expected at the end of July, the Chancellor has already said that to be eligible for the bonus, the employee in question must have been paid an average of £520 per month between November and January.
The Chancellor also confirmed that the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme will finish at the end of October 2020 and will not be extended.
New ‘kickstart’ jobs scheme
To assist with youth unemployment, the Chancellor announced a ‘kickstart’ plan.
Employers will receive funding if they create a new job with a minimum of 25 hours per week for a person aged between 16 and 24-years-old who is at risk of long-term unemployment and claiming Universal Credit. The available funding will pay for the employee’s National Minimum Wage for 25 hours a week (plus the associated employer National Insurance contributions and employer minimum automatic enrolment contributions) for six months.
Employers will be required to provide training to the new employee and support them in gaining a permanent role. The scheme will run from August 2020 with jobs expected to start in the Autumn.
Apprenticeships and traineeships
In addition, the Chancellor has announced that from August 2020 to January 2021, the Government will pay employers to create new apprenticeships.
Employers will be eligible to receive £2,000 for each new apprentice they hire who is under the age of 25 and £1,500 for each new apprentice aged 25 or over. This is in addition to the existing £1,000 payment the government already provides for new 16 - 18-year-old apprentices and those aged under 25 with an Education, Health and Care Plan.
The Government also plans to triple participation in traineeships by funding employers who provide trainees with work experience at a rate of £1,000 per trainee.