4:34 PM, 19 Feb 2020

Improving a company’s growth potential is very important to employers. Hiring an apprentice or trainee can help a company to keep on top of business demands, as well as to increase production. The employment-based Australian Apprenticeships offer both part-time and full-time placements in many different occupations spanning across 50 industries. Moreover, all positions offered are permanent.

It takes a long time to learn the ropes in many skilled professions, and sometimes, these skills can only be mastered through apprenticeships. Electricians, plumbers, chefs, carpenters, car mechanics and maintenance fitters are all fitting examples. Traineeships, on the other hand, tend to have shorter durations and also apply to different industries.

Building the skills capacity of a business

The key objective of undertaking apprenticeships or traineeships is to achieve the necessary qualifications through immersion in the relevant industry. An employee’s performance is assessed through their ability to demonstrate the skills in question. 

It is your responsibility as an employer to help apprentices learn the skills they need through practical experience and involvement in company practices. You must take an active approach and keep a close eye on the progress made by the apprentices throughout their training. Formal training must be carried out by every apprentice/trainee during working hours, and this can take place either in the workplace or at a training organisation. Apprentices are paid for their training as it falls within their working hours. 

An apprenticeship can be a very cost-effective staff-training process since apprentices are often given extra support from outside sources to undertake their training.

What to consider

With more than 250,000 apprentices and trainees undertaking training right now, it would seem that  Australian Apprenticeships are perfect for all professions. However, this is not the case. The induction, training and supervision of new apprentices require a great deal of commitment from employers. This must be carefully considered. Moreover, employers must think carefully about whether they have enough time, energy and resources to invest in nurturing a new apprentice and improving their skills.

A new perspective

The hiring of a new apprentice/trainee can rejuvenate a company by offering new perspectives and ideas. What’s more, employees who have been working at the company for a long time can share their skills and knowledge with the apprentices,  empowering the company’s future generations. To ensure the future of your business, you might want to invest in tailored training for your apprentice or trainee, as it can help them to develop the skills and knowledge required for your company.

Qualification options 

Apprenticeships and traineeships can go beyond Certificate II and III levels. In several industries, there are Australian Apprenticeships available in occupations that progress towards Certificate IV's, Diplomas and Advanced Diplomas.

To investigate the different ways of developing skills within a company, Alternative Delivery Pilots have been set up for the Australian Government's Apprenticeship Training. The piloting of higher-level apprenticeships, such as those that can result in diplomas or degrees, is a key part of this new scheme. However, as of yet, these pilots have only focused on the business and financial services, IT and certain manufacturing industries.

An overview of industries, occupations and certification outcomes can be seen in the Job Pathways Charts. Employers can refer to these charts to compare the available options and to familiarise themselves with the career pathways available to employees. It is a good idea to refer to Job Pathways Charts when deciding how to improve the skills of old and new employees.

Wage Concessions

When hiring apprentices and trainees, an employee must consider that their wages are likely to be lower than other staff members. This is because they will probably be less experienced and less productive than more experienced workers. Furthermore, more of their time will be spent participating in formal training.  

All employees must be given accurate and up-to-date information about payment. For this purpose, the Fair Work Ombudsman is a valuable resource. Employers can consult the Fair Work Ombudsman for information and resources regarding workplace relations, employee wages, payments and entitlements. You can also find information and recommendations about the recruitment of apprentices/trainees.

More information can be found on the Fair Work Ombudsman website.

Incentives

Incentives may be offered by both the Australian Government and State Governments for the employment of apprentices and trainees. The incentives are usually based on the skill level that will be achieved upon completion of the apprenticeship, as well as other factors such as age, location and skills shortages. It is important to consult your Apprentice Network Provider about this because incentives are always changing. There are also eligibility criteria that must be met. 

Apprenticeships Network Providers

The funding for the Australian Apprenticeships Support Network services are provided by the Federal Government and State Government. Our main duties are to offer support to employers, apprentices and trainees throughout the placement. We are also responsible for setting up formal training contracts for the apprentices and trainees.

To start the process, you may wish to contact us. If you are considering hiring an apprentice, we will be able to address any questions you may have.