There are several supports and schemes available to businesses and employers, many of which have been introduced or altered in response to the Covid-19 crisis. These range from work placement programmes to wage subsidies. Below you will find a brief overview of the current employer supports landscape, including relevant signposting to further information.
Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme
The Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme (EWSS) is the follow on Covid-19 relief measure to the Temporary Wage Subsidy Scheme which ended in August this year. EWSS is a wage subsidy paid directly to the employer. The EWSS will run until at least March 2021 and will then be reviewed. Businesses can apply to avail of the EWSS through Revenue.ie.
Covid Restrictions Support Scheme
The Covid Restrictions Support Scheme (CRSS) was announced as a measure to support businesses forced to close due to restrictions coming into effect at Level 3 or above in the Government’s Living With Covid-19 Plan. Through the scheme, companies and self-employed individuals that are either forced to close their business or are significantly impacted due to restrictions may be eligible for the support payment of up to €5,000 per week. The payment ceases when the Covid-19 restrictions fall below Level 3. The latest details on eligibility and guidelines on the implementation of CRSS can be found here. Businesses can now register for the scheme through the Revenue Online Service (ROS).
Short Time Work Support
The Short Time Work Support offers a short-term subsidy in the form of a Jobseekers Benefit for those who have been put on a shorter working week temporarily. For example, if put on a 3-day working week down from a 5-day working week, an employee may receive a payment for the two days no longer at work. This helps employers to maintain their labour force during a period of temporarily reduced trading. Employees can access the Short Time Work Support through their local Intreo Office or through MyWelfare.ie.
JobsIreland.ie is Ireland’s national recruitment website. The site offers employers the opportunity to advertise for any job vacancies for free. Employers can opt to avail of a ‘job matching’ a service whereby a job spec is matched up to appropriate jobseekers registered with the site.
Apprenticeship Incentivisation Scheme
The Apprenticeship Incentivisation Scheme offers a grant of €3,000 per apprentice to businesses that take on an apprentice between March 1st and 21st December. The full spectrum of apprenticeship options and further details on the grant can be found at www.apprenticeship.ie.
As part of the July Stimulus Package, Government announced JobsPlus subsidies of up to €7,500 over 2 years for employers that take on an employee under the age of 30 who is on the Live Register or in receipt of the Pandemic Unemployment Payment. Further information on JobsPlus is available here.
Work Placement and Experience Programme
The new Work Placement and Experience Programme which was announced as part of Budget 2021 is aimed at helping people to gain work experience and new skills. There is no monetary cost to the employer acting as the host organisation. The placement candidate is paid by the Government. Participation in the Work Placement and Experience Programme can be a positive addition to CSR and can add increased diversity to an organisation. The full details of how employers can get involved in the programme are due to be announced in the coming weeks.
Intreo is the Government’s single point of contact for all employment and income services and supports, providing services to both employers and jobseekers. An Intreo guide to employer supports can be found here.
Reskilling and Upskilling Supports for Employees
Skills to Advance is a programme that helps those already in employment but in need of upskilling to meet the demands of a changing world of work, from digitisation to health and safety. Courses provided as part of the Skills to Advance initiative can be found through your local Education and Training Board (ETB) here.
Skills to Compete was announced as a part of the July Stimulus Package as a response to the re-skilling and up-skilling requirements that will be needed by members of the labour force who may be displaced from their sector and will need new or adapted skills for employment.
E-College is an online learning platform that provides training courses in areas including project management and administrative and digital skills. During the Covid-19 crisis, the decision was made to provide e-college courses for free. Those in employment are eligible to take a course if they are over the age of 18 and resident in the Republic of Ireland with a PPS number. You can find out more about E-College and its range of courses here.
Join the Dublin Chamber Covid-19 Support & Discussion Group on LinkedIn, which has been set up to allow member companies to discuss issues and share advice relating to Covid-19. Join now.
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