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Mark Hughes, CEO of the Growth Company
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More businesses set to benefit from Kickstart following launch of tiered support offer - helping businesses of all sizes get young people into employment

THE Growth Company has launched a new tiered support offer to help more businesses access and benefit from the Government’s new £2 billion Kickstart scheme – helping young people affected by the economic fallout of Covid-19 into employment.

Kickstart is set to create hundreds of thousands of government-subsidised job placements to help young people into work and support the UK’s economic revival, with the Growth Company’s Kickstart offer including opportunities for those businesses, who feared they would be left behind by the scheme due to a requirement to create a minimum of 30 job placements.

The initiative is aimed at helping young people to gain vital skills and experience that will boost their employability.

Employers who participate in the scheme will not only gain access to a large pool of talented young people at zero cost but will also receive funding to cover additional costs, such as the training and development needs of each person placed.

While many organisations require help to access Kickstart, the Growth Company recognised that there was a real need from organisations of all sizes throughout the UK for additional support. Employers want to provide great quality placements and enjoy all the benefits a Kickstarter can bring to their organisation but may have concerns about the time or expertise needed to ensure all the right criteria and support needs are met.

As a £100+ million not-for-profit social enterprise with a mission to enable growth, create jobs and improve lives, and one of the country’s largest providers of public funded business support services and a leading provider of employment, skills and career development support to more than 100,000 people each year – the Growth Company is well-positioned to step in and provide this support.

For businesses who want to access the scheme but have less than the minimum 30 placements needed to obtain Kickstart funding, the Growth Company will partner with them as their Representative body to collectively offer that amount and apply on their behalf. Other support being offered includes on-placement support for the young person and HR assistance to streamline the onboarding of Kickstarters.  

Under the scheme, the government will pay 100% of the relevant National Minimum Wage for 25 hours a week, in addition to National Insurance and pension contributions. There is also £1,500 per job placement available for setup costs, support and training. If organisations want to offer more than the 25 hours covered by the scheme, they must pay the wages for the additional hours themselves. 

The Growth Company itself will be leading by example and offering places to 30 ‘Kickstarters’ who will be paid the Real Living Wage.

Mark Hughes, CEO of the Growth Company, said:

“As an organisation that prides itself on the work we do to help people boost their skills, gain sustainable employment and kickstart their careers, the Growth Company Kickstart offer draws on our extensive experience, offering employers a package of tiered support that is designed to give both them and their kickstarters the best possible experience.

“I would like to put a call out to businesses of all sizes and across all sectors to access the scheme as we all play our part in supporting young people and the economic recovery. By taking part, you’ll be providing a great quality experience to someone who needs it while opening up your organisation to fresh talent and innovative ways of thinking, as well as helping your existing staff to develop their management and mentoring skills.”

The Growth Company Kickstart offer includes a tiered package of support, depending on the requirements of the individual businesses who sign up, which include:

  • Being a business’s representative organisation: The Growth Company will design roles that meet the needs of both a business and its eligibility criteria, produce role profiles and ensure applications meet all the necessary criteria. If a business is not able to offer the minimum requirement of 30 placements, they will partner you with other organisations in its network to collectively offer this amount.  
  • On-placement support: The Growth Company will develop a comprehensive package for Kickstarters while they are on placement, taking away a business’s need to organise or deliver this. This could include information, advice and guidance leading to structured personal development plans, help accessing training and qualifications, CV and employment advice and ongoing post-placement support for those who don’t obtain permanent work after the six-month period.  
  • Employment services: The Growth Company can provide a range of HR and ‘back office’ support to help onboard new-starters – allowing businesses to ‘host’ the placement with help on a range of matters, including payroll, drawing up contracts, producing handbooks and best-practice documents, and handling a variety of HR queries.  


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