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Thu 13th Feb 2020 - Deliveroo calls for end of Apprenticeship Levy restrictions as it launches scheme to tackle chef shortage
Deliveroo calls for end of Apprenticeship Levy restrictions as it launches scheme to tackle chef shortage: The government has been urged to lift restrictions on Apprenticeship Levy transfers. The call came as Deliveroo launched a scheme to help its restaurant partners tackle a national shortage of trained chefs. Deliveroo will partly fund the chef apprenticeship scheme with its Apprenticeship Levy and invest £100,000 and train up to 20 chefs a year. The scheme will be run in partnership with HIT Training, with both companies calling on the government to lift the restriction on Apprenticeship Levy transfers and allow large employers to contribute as much as they like down their supply chain. Large employers are restricted by a 25% cap on the amount of unspent levy, which can be transferred to businesses in their supply chains that would otherwise have to pay for an apprenticeship via the government co-investment model. For Deliveroo, this amounts to almost £500,000 in five years for small restaurants. Deliveroo said being able to transfer up to 50% of the levy, for example, could amount to £1m of investment that could directly support a new generation of chefs. Deliveroo launched the scheme after research revealed about four-fifths (80%) of its restaurant partners were struggling to hire new chefs. More than half (54%) cited not enough suitably qualified applicants as the main difficulty, while more than two-thirds (70%) said it was “moderately” or “very” difficult to recruit front-of-house and kitchen staff. Deliveroo has also become the first food delivery company to offer online training courses. The 4,000 courses are being provided through a partnership with employer engagement platform Wrkit, with 92% of the courses free. Deliveroo chief operating officer Rohan Pradhan said the scheme would “help our restaurant partners hire, train and upskill workforces and develop a new generation of culinary talent”. HIT Training managing director Jill Whittaker added: “Hospitality is one of the most vibrant and exciting sectors to work in but there isn’t a business that hasn’t been affected by staff shortages.”


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