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Kickstart Scheme

Government Kickstart Scheme 

19th May 2021

What is the Kickstart Scheme?

The Kickstart Scheme helps employers, by providing funding for them to create job placements for 16 to 24 year olds on Universal Credit.


The Government will pay:

  • 100% of National Minimum Wage (or National Living Wage depending on age) for 25 hours per week for a total of 6 months

  • Associated employer NI contributions

  • Employer minimum workplace pension contributions (automatic enrolment)

  • A grant of £1,500 for setup and employability training costs

Employers can spread the job start dates up until 31st December 2021 (you'll get funding until 30th June 2022 if a young person starts their job on 31st December 2021).  Employers can also choose to ‘top up’ the salary level and hours depending on the needs of the business.

Why businesses are signing up to the Kickstart Scheme

Thousands of employers have already signed up to the kickstart scheme.  Benefits include:

  • Employing young staff for FREE!

  • Extra resources to help sustain and grow your business

  • Creating new jobs for 16 - 24 year olds


Application criteria

The jobs created with Kickstart Scheme funding must be new jobs. They must not:

  • replace existing or planned vacancies

  • cause existing employees, apprentices or contractors to lose work or reduce their working hours

The jobs must:

For each job you must help the young person become more employable. This could include:

  • looking for long-term work, including career advice and setting goals

  • support with curriculum vitae (CV) and interview preparations

  • developing their skills in the workplace

If your application is successful

If your application is successful:

  1. You will give the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) job descriptions that work coaches at Jobcentre Plus will use to match candidates to the jobs.

  2. You will receive a notification email each time a young person is referred to the job (‘referrals’).

  3. Referred candidates may choose to apply for the job.

  4. You’ll then be able to interview the candidates who have applied.

  5. You will tell DWP when the young person has started so funding can be processed. You’ll be told how to do this in a ‘referral’ email.

Are you an employer looking to setup Kickstart placements?

With youth unemployment rates increasing, we are keen to give young people the best possible chance to succeed.  In support of this, HR FiiT are partnering with businesses to help secure these placements and support with the end to end employment process including:


  • support with the Kickstart application process

  • guidance and documentation to support with recruitment of young workers


  • offers and contracts of employment

  • support and guidance inducting new hires

Employability Training 

  • interview skills support for young workers

  • CV writing support and guidance for young workers

Further information

If you would like to discuss getting started, or have questions regarding the scheme, get in touch today as we would be happy to help!

For further information visit the kickstart scheme website: Kickstart Scheme – Find out more about the Kickstart scheme (

What our clients say

“Auriol has always been an excellent sounding board and trusted advisor.  Her support and advice not only helped me manage employee issues, but also recruit a strong team”

Stuart McNicoll, Nexus Community Leisure