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Apprenticeship Return, Retain and Result Scheme

This scheme offers employers an incentive to return and retain their apprentices. 

Businesses that have had to furlough an apprentice under the terms of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme will be able to access incentive payments through the Apprenticeship Return, Retain and Result Scheme (RRR).

The scheme will help you return your apprentice(s) from furlough, and retain them until 31 March 2022 and on to successful completion of their apprenticeship.


The total amount payable under the scheme will be a maximum of £3,700 per apprentice, distribution as follows:

  • Return - £500 per returned furloughed apprentice payable for the first full month of paid apprenticeship from 1 November 2020 to 31 March 2022
  • Retain – maximum of £2,000 available: £500 per month for up to 4 months of paid apprenticeship between 1 December 2020 and 31 March 2022.
  • Result - £1,200 for successful full framework achievement of a returned furloughed apprentice.


This scheme is open to employers participating in the DfE funded ApprenticeshipsNI or Higher Level Apprenticeship programmes, who return their furloughed apprentices to work after April 2020, with payments as follows:

Return Incentive - £500 per returned apprentice

  • Payable for the first complete month of paid employment for the returned apprentice, beginning from 1 November 2020 for a period of at least 4 weeks.
  • For earlier returners, continued employment for the month of November 2020, will constitute the qualifying period for the “Return” incentive. This incentive will be paid on submitted claims with appropriate evidence of furlough and employment from December 2020.

Retain Incentive – In April 2021 you will be able to apply for up to £2,000 for each apprentice you have retained

  • £500 will be available for each full month for a period of up to 4 months, from 1 December 2020 to the end of March 2021.
  • The period of retain will also adjust to reflect any in-month apprentice returners. For example, if an apprentice returned on the 12 November, the return month would be captured as 12 November to 11 December.

Result Incentive – £1,200 for successful full framework achievement of a returned furloughed apprentice

  • This incentive is payable alongside any of the other employer incentives and will be payable on submission of proof of full framework achievement of the AppsNI or Higher Level Apprenticeship (HLA).
  • The timing of this payment will depend upon when the apprenticeship is successfully completed and will be payable for all successful completions beginning from 1 November 2020.

To note: Once an apprenticeship is complete, no further retain incentive beyond the completion date can be claimed.


Applications are now open. Download the applicant claim form. Your form should be returned, along with the necessary evidence, to 

This page was last updated 13 April 2021