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Apprenticeship target

Public sector bodies with 250 or more staff have a target set by the government to employ an average of at least 2.3% of their staff as new apprentice starts each year. 


As a public sector body in scope of this target, we must 'have regard' to the target. This means we must:

  1. Report our data annually (see the data tables on this page).
  2. Explain how we have had regard to the target, including the actions we have taken to challenge obstacles preventing us from meeting the target.

Data for Derbyshire

Number of employees who work in England
Indicator2017 to 20182018 to 20192019 to 20202020 to 2021
Number of employees who were working in England prior to the start of the reporting period (on 31 March) 22,796 21,254 24,313 20,524
Number of employees who were working in England at end of reporting period (on 31 March) 21,524 21,792 22,669 18,866
Number of new employees who started working for you in England between 1 April to 31 March 2,845 1,947 3,135 1,879

Number of apprentices who work in England
Indicator2017 to 20182018 to 20192019 to 20202020 to 2021
Number of apprentices who were working in England on 31 March 2020 (at start of period) 58 182 246 139
Number of apprentices who were working in England on 31 March 2021 (at end of period) 182 198 258 252
Number of new apprentices in England between 1 April to 31 March (includes both new hires and existing employees who started an apprenticeship) 172 163 143 114
Full time equivalent        
Full time equivalents (optional) 15,367 15,365 13,730 12,748

Percentage of apprenticeships
Indicator2017 to 20182018 to 20192019 to 20202020 to 2021
Apprenticeship starts (both new hires and existing employees who started an apprenticeship) as a proportion of employment starts between 1 April and 31 March 6.05% 8.27% 4.56% 6.07%
Total headcount of employees that were apprentices on 31 March (at end of period) 0.85% 0.91% 1.14% 1.34%
Apprenticeship starts (both new hires and existing employees who started an apprenticeship) between 1 April to 31 March as a proportion of total headcount on 31 March 0.75% 0.76% 0.59% 0.56%

Actions taken towards meeting the public sector duty target

For this reporting period, there were 114 apprentice starts, including both new hires and existing colleagues who started an apprenticeship, of which 27 are within our schools.

Our new People Strategy details how we will enable and support our workforce to deliver our strategic aims through 5 people priorities, one of which is to engage, nurture and develop our people and our future potential. We recognise that the recruitment of apprenticeships is critical to our workforce planning approach including considering medium and long-term opportunities to maximise our apprenticeship levy use and expand employment and development opportunities across the organisation.

Following the launch of our leadership apprenticeship programme, we're currently supporting 48 existing employees with this opportunity. They undertake a mixture of level 5 to 7 apprenticeships. A second cohort commences from October 2021 onwards with approximately 50 existing colleagues.

In January 2020, 13 employees commenced our the first social worker apprenticeship programme. A second cohort offering 8 places is planned to start in January 2022.

We continue to support care leavers into apprenticeships within small and medium enterprises into roles often not available within our remit to make available, for example hairdressing and retail. These care leavers are employed on council employment contracts with their pay met by us. Levy funding is utilised to support the delivery and these apprentices contribute to our public sector target performance.

Under the government's Apprenticeship Levy Funding Rules, we are permitted to transfer up to 25% of available levy to local businesses to encourage apprenticeship placements within the local economy. Since we commenced levy transfers we have committed around £1 million to support local small and medium enterprises. The amount transferred continues to increase as does the number and range of employers who have accessed this funding. Transfers enable the delivery to apprenticeships in their workplace which has created additional career and skills development opportunities for Derbyshire residents.

This activity continues to build on and improve on our previous years of activity and have led to a much broader understanding and further engagement in this agenda across the council. By utilising an evolving approach, we aim to deliver year on year improvements in our performance against the public sector target.