Report paves way for higher apprenticeship completions (NSW)

A major new report into the expectations, attitudes and abilities of apprentices and their employers will help increase apprenticeship completions.

NSW education minister Adrian Piccoli, who launched the A fair deal: Apprentices and their employers in NSW report, said it would inform the Government what it needed to do “to assist all employers to offer the most productive apprenticeship pathway”.

When apprentices don’t complete their training it costs employers and governments significantly. In 2010 the cost of non-completions in New South Wales was over $180 million, he said.

A fair deal

The report was commissioned by the NSW Board of Vocational Education and Training. Researchers surveyed 1200 apprentices and former apprentices, and 500 employers.

Mr Piccoli said today’s young apprentices were not the same as they were a generation or two ago.

“They have higher levels of schooling, more work experience and an expectation of ‘a fair deal’ at work,” he said.

“This report describes a fair deal as: challenging work, real on-the-job training, good supervision, a good boss, positive workplace communications, and competency-based pay and progression.”

Government action

The government will use social networking to bring apprentices, particularly those working with small employers, closer together, and offer employers access to supervisor workshops to help improve employment practices.

“We will also help apprentices and employers by streamlining arrangements for signing off apprenticeship completions and increasing capacity for electronic lodgement of agreements and claims for payment,” Mr Piccoli said.

SOURCE: Mary Dickie, Rod McDonald and Dr. Fadil Pedic, “A fair deal: Apprentices and their employers in NSW. Integrated research report”, NSW Board of Vocational Education and Training, November 2011

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