13th March 2018

NatWest report shows action needed to boost financial skills for apprentices

Nearly half of apprentices struggle to keep up with bills according to a new report. NatWest is calling on policymakers, employers and training providers to recognise the importance of financial capability and provide this vital life skill for the next generation of employees and business leaders.

Kirsty Britz, Director of Sustainability at NatWest, said: “Many apprentices are gaining financial independence for the first time. Early decisions made with poor information or a lack of understanding can have long lasting implications.

“If apprentices are to deliver the most they can for the UK economy, and if they are to live up to the expectations of commentators and policymakers, they must be as well prepared for working life as possible. A financially fit and healthy workforce means improved employee wellbeing, increased productivity, and is beneficial to business overall.”

Andy Briscoe, Chair of the Money Advice Service and Chair of the FinCap Board, said: “Just as employers support apprentices to take their first steps on their career path by teaching them the skills to succeed in the workplace, they can also play a critical role in helping apprentices to develop the money management skills that are so important at every stage of life.”

Recommendations from NatWest’s Financial Capability and Young Workers Report:
• Financial capability support, training and education to be delivered across all post-16 settings, via colleges, training providers and universities.
• Employers to include financial capability training and support as part of their employee induction process.
• Financial capability training, support and education to be classified as Job Training and built in to future apprenticeship standards and curriculum.
• Education Select Committee to consider including financial capability within the scope of its current review on Apprenticeships.
• Government and business membership groups to proactively communicate apprentice pay rules to employers, with training providers supporting apprentices to understand their rights and responsibilities regarding apprenticeship pay.