Courtesy of The Raithwaite Estate Spa, N Yorks

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 SpaVoice January Apprenticeships

by Diane Hey - Therapist, Employer, Educator
Vice Chair Beauty Professional Apprenticeship Trailblazer Steering Group
Apprenticeship Ambassador

As the world faces the largest challenge known in our lifetime, the wellbeing and close contact service sector has spent many months closed to welcoming guests and clients and when open for short bursts of activity is has been at a severely reduced capacity.

Covid 19 coupled with the already known skills gap and then leaving the EU has brought and will bring challenges for some time to come, so how do we emerge from this? As a sector known for its cup half full positivity, it will also provide opportunities. The increased awareness in the need for better self-care and wellbeing on all levels, physical, mental and emotional will let us seize an opportunity to embrace our own recovery… 

The Government has stepped in to provide an unprecedented response with substantial funding to employers to retain staff via the Job retention scheme, grants and bounce back loans, but how do we strengthen and build our teams with the world class skills needed to succeed?

Apprenticeships form part of this toolkit that lead to a workplace skills led recovery….created by employers for employers. The Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education have responsibility in England for approving the apprenticeship standards (

Standards are developed by Employers from Trailblazer groups to ensure apprentices gain the correct level of knowledge, skills and behaviours (KSBs) they need to carry out the job role.  

An apprentice is an employee, who spends at least 20% of their working time completing ‘off the job’ training to gain the KSBs, leading to an end point assessment, which is graded. The employer and training provider develop the curriculum plan to meet the needs of all parties and work towards achieving the apprenticeship standard as published. Each standard has a recommended length of time but must last at least one year and a day. 

The Beauty Professional Apprenticeship suite has the following standards available:

Beauty Therapist (

Advanced Beauty Therapist (

Wellbeing and Holistic Therapist (

Beauty and make up consultant (

Nail Services Technician (

Government has set out plans for additional benefits for employers taking on Apprentices during the pandemic.  

  • The apprentice must be a new employee to the business, have a contract of employment start date between 1st August 2020 and 31st January 2021 (inclusive) and must not have been employed by the employer within 6 months prior to the contact start date.  
  • Employers will make claims through the apprenticeship service from 1st September 2020. 
  • Apprentices aged 16-24 the payment will be £2,000, and for apprentices aged 25 or over the payment will be £1,500.
  • The payment will be made directly to employers in two equal instalments at day 90 and day 365.
  • There is no limit on the number of incentive payments that an employer can claim for eligible apprentices. 

The Trailblazer group are so pleased to announce, that the wellbeing and holistic therapist standard (level 3) has been agreed for publication. It is so timely of all the standards,  it provides a therapist the development structure for the KSBs needed to provide a truly holistic experience for their clients, building on the Beauty Therapist (level 2) standard that also includes basic body massage, making it ideal for Spa use. 

Time is of the essence for anyone wishing to benefit from these incentives, apprentices can continue with their off the job training during closure (virtually whilst closed) preparing them to move quickly once the Sector can begin to re-open. It gives young people an opportunity to be invested in and employers an opportunity to invest in them. Apprentices are more likely to stay with their employer. 

To develop an offer now or in the future, employers need to have a digital account with the apprenticeship service, advertise all vacancies via the National apprenticeship service and work with a registered apprenticeship training provider to recruit and develop your own skills led recovery…… 

If any employer is interested in learning more, do contact Diane Hey at the Institute. 



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Monday, 19 April 2021

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