Kickstart Job Scheme

Kickstart Job Scheme

The UK Government has introduced a new Kickstart Scheme in Great Britain, a £2 billion fund to create hundreds of thousands of high quality 6-month work placements aimed at those aged 16-24 who are on Universal Credit and are deemed to be at risk of long term unemployment. Edinburgh Chamber is working alongside the British Chambers of Commerce and is a recognised intermediary in helping businesses access the scheme.

About the scheme:

Selected out-of-work young people will be offered six-month work placements, for at least 25 hours a week, to help them gain experience, skills and confidence. The scheme is designed to be a stepping stone to further employment, and anyone between the age of 16 and 24 who is out-of-work and claiming Universal Credit may be eligible. Government figures suggest that there are already more than half a million people who fall into this category, and they aim to have the first placements on offer from November.

The government will fund each Kickstart job – paying 100% of the age-relevant National Minimum Wage, National Insurance and pension contributions for a 25-hour a week. Employers can then top up pay out of their own pockets, or extend the hours if they wish. In addition, the government is offering employers £1,500 to set up support and training for those taking part, or other set-up costs such as buying uniforms.

How to apply:

  • For employers who will have less than 30 placements available, you can apply through the Chamber who can act as a representative on your behalf.  We at the Edinburgh Chamber are participating in this scheme as a representative organisation, so if you’re interested to find out more or want to apply, please email us directly at and we’ll be in touch.
  • For those who would like to apply for support for 30 or more job placements they have available, you can apply directly.  Please check herefor more details.


Any organisation, regardless of size, can apply for funding.

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

  • replace existing or planned vacancies
  • cause existing employees or contractors to lose or reduce their employment

The roles you are applying for must be:

  • a minimum of 25 hours per week, for 6 months
  • paid at least the National Minimum Wage for their age group
  • should not require people to undertake extensive training before they begin the job placement

Each application should include how you will help the participants to develop their skills and experience, including:

  • support to look for long-term work, including career advice and setting goals
  • support with CV and interview preparations
  • supporting the participant with basic skills, such as attendance, timekeeping and teamwork

For more information, please contact the Chamber team –