Apprenticeship Employment Network

AE News Volume 14, Issue 23

Friday, 18th June 2021
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Upcoming Events

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21-25 Jun - Online Virtual Event Series

Last Chance to Register for the AEN Virtual Event Series 21-25 June

The AEN series of 1-hour online virtual events will be spread over the week of 21-25 June.

This is a free event.

To register your interest, please go to the AEN events page, select ‘AEN Virtual Event Series’ and click on the ‘Register’ link for any of the sessions.

Upon completion of a registration, a confirmation email will be sent to which includes an attached calendar file that can be saved to your calendar with a link to join the session.
Program

Monday 21 June
  • 10.00 - 11.00am, National Skills Commission Update
  • 1.00 - 2.00pm, Jobs Victoria Update
Tuesday 22 June
  • 10.00 - 11.00am, Australian Digital Skills Analysis
  • 1.00 - 2.00pm, A New Zealand perspective on VET
Wednesday 23 June
  • 10.00 - 11.00am, AEN & GAN Network Update, and Kangan Pre-Apprenticeships Programs
  • 1.00 - 2.00pm, Employer Attitudes and Behavior to Skills Development
Thursday 24 June
  • 10.00 - 11.00am, Big Build Apprenticeships
  • 1.00 - 2.00pm, VRQA Update, and Commonwealth Apprenticeship Employment Incentives
Friday 25 June
  • 10.00 - 11.00am, Women in Trades
Please click on AEN events page for a copy of the detailed program.

Enquiries: Anna Bejanoff at admin@aen.org.au or 03 9639 3955.

Victorian Apprenticeship Recovery Program – Minister Pulford Acknowledges 300th Commencement Milestone

On Thursday morning this week, Minister Pulford announced the 300th commencement milestone for the Victorian Apprenticeship Recovery Program at Central Highlands Water in Ballarat.

Recently, the AEN network reached the 309 new commencements within the Victorian Apprenticeship Recovery Program in 2021.

This program is specifically designed to support Victorian government agencies take on disadvantaged young jobseekers through apprenticeships/traineeships via a GTO through the challenges of COVID-19.
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The Victorian Apprenticeship Recovery Package (VARP) provides 300 young people aged 15 to 24 with an opportunity to work for a minimum of 12 months while completing an accredited traineeship or apprenticeship. VARP aims to increase the participation of disadvantaged young people in the workforce, while assisting communities to meet future skill and employment needs. This program was funded $9.0m through the working for Victoria fund in September 2020.

Program achievements include:
  • 32% male, 67% female participation.
  • 8% of participants identify as indigenous.
  • 6% of participants identify having a disability.
  • 35% of participants in metropolitan Melbourne and 65% in regional Victoria.
  • Apprentices/trainees come from 21 different cultural backgrounds.
  • 300+ apprentices/trainees cover 41 different qualifications.
The program has support from over 200 different Victorian government agencies.

Within the Ballarat region, there are 36 apprentices and trainees that have commenced this year as part of the VARP across 14 different qualifications.

A big thank you to Central Highlands Water for hosting the event under COVID restrictions and to BGT, NECA and Westvic for providing apprentices/trainees for the event.

For further details, please visit AEN website.

COVID Restrictions Ease for Metropolitan Melbourne

Metropolitan Melbourne restrictions

From 11:59pm on Thursday 17 June 2021, if you live in metropolitan Melbourne:
  • There are no restrictions on the reasons to leave home.
  • There are no limits on the distance you can travel, and you can travel to regional Victoria.
  • You can travel to Victoria’s Alpine Resorts if all visitors have a COVID-19 test within 72 hours of departing Melbourne and receive a negative test (children under 12 years not included). Visitors must be able to show evidence of a negative test as a condition of entry, such as a text message from a testing provider.
  • You can have up to two adults plus dependants visit your home per day.
  • Face masks are mandatory indoors, except at your home.
  • Face masks are recommended outdoors where you cannot maintain 1.5 metres from others.
  • If you have any symptoms, no matter how mild you must get tested for COVID-19.
  • Check-in everywhere you visit, no matter how long you spend at that location.
Social gatherings
  • Up to two adults can visit a household per day, plus dependants.
  • You can see friends and family outdoors in a public place in a group of up to 20 people. A public place is an area accessible by members of the public like a park or the beach. It does not include your backyard at home.
Work and education
  • If you can work or study from home, you should continue to do so. If you can’t work from home, you can go to work.
  • Schools and universities remain open.
  • Offices can increase to 50% capacity or 20 people, whichever is greater.
Religion and ceremony
  • Religious gatherings and ceremonies are allowed with a maximum of 150 people per venue (indoors and outdoors), with no more than 75 indoors plus the number of people required for the service. A density limit of 1 person per 4 sqm applies indoors and outdoors.
  • You can have a wedding at a venue with up to 20 people. This limit includes the couple and two witnesses. The celebrant and a photographer are in addition to the cap. Weddings in private residences are not permitted unless compassionate grounds apply.
  • Funerals are allowed with up to 75 people. This limit doesn’t include people required to conduct the funeral. If a funeral is held at a private residence, private gathering restrictions apply.
Sport and recreation
  • Community sport can resume for all ages, including training and competition. Contact and non-contact sport outdoors can resume with the minimum amount of people needed to play the game.
  • Indoor physical recreation can resume, with group sizes of up to 10 per session indoors, plus the minimum number of people required to conduct the activity (such as a trainer running a gym class). No more than 50 patrons per venue indoors, a maximum capacity of 150 per venue (indoors and outdoors) and a density requirement of 1 person per 4 sqm applies.
  • For activities other than community sport (like exercise classes in the park) you can exercise outdoors with up to 20 people.
Retail and hospitality
  • Shops are open with a density requirement of 1 person per 4 sqm. While shopping you need to adhere to the patron limit per shop.
  • Beauty and personal care services are open. Workers must wear a face mask, but customers can remove their face mask for the duration of the service if the service cannot be provided with a face mask on.
  • Restaurants and cafes (under 100sqm) can open with up to 25 people before density requirements apply. A density requirement of 1 person per 4 sqm with a maximum of 150 people (indoors and outdoors) and no more than 75 indoors. Only seated service is permitted when dining in, to ensure everyone can keep 1.5 metres distance.
Entertainment
  • Community facilities including libraries can open with 150 per venue (indoors and outdoors) including up to 75 indoors, and a maximum group size of 10 (excluding infants under the age of 1 year) plus the minimum number of people required to conduct an activity or service.
  • Bars, karaoke facilities and nightclubs are open with seated service, a density requirement of 1 person per 4 sqm and no more than 50 people indoors.
  • Indoor seated venues such as cinemas can have 50% seated capacity and up to 75 people per venue and maximum group size of 10 people (excluding babies under 1 year). A density requirement of 1 person per 4 sqm applies to indoor non-seated areas.
  • Outdoor seated venues can have 50% seated capacity and up to 150 people per venue and maximum group size of 20 people (excluding babies under 1 year). A density requirement of 1 person per 4 sqm applies to outdoor non-seated areas.
Face masks
  • Face masks must be carried at all times and must be worn indoors. You do not need to wear a mask in your own home or if a lawful exception applies.
  • Face masks are recommended when outdoors when you cannot maintain 1.5 metres from others.
Restrictions - regional Victoria

From 11:59 pm on Thursday, 17 June 2021, if you live in regional Victoria:
  • There are no restrictions on the reasons to leave home but staying COVIDSafe remains important.
  • There are no restrictions on travelling to metropolitan Melbourne.
  • You can have up to 5 adults visit your home once per day.
  • Face masks are mandatory indoors, except at your home.
  • Face masks are recommended outdoors where you cannot maintain 1.5m from others.
  • If you have any symptoms, no matter how mild you must get tested for COVID-19.
Social gatherings
  • Up to 5 adults can visit a household once per day. Babies under 12 months are not included in this cap, and other dependants can also attend if they cannot be left unattended or cared for in another setting. The 5 people may be from different households and may visit together or separately. If you receive 5 visitors in a day, you can still visit another household who is yet to have visitors.
  • You can see friends and family outdoors in a public place in a group of up to 50 people. A public place is an area accessible by members of the public like a park or the beach. It does not include your backyard at home.
Work and education
  • If you can work or study from home, you should continue to do so. If you can’t work from home, you can go to work.
  • Schools and universities remain open.
  • Offices can increase to 75% capacity or 30 people, whichever is greater.
For further details please visit Coronavirus COVIDSafe Settings.

Retrenched Apprentices and Trainees Program

Retrenched Apprentices and Trainees Program Banner
Out of Trade Banner
This program has now supported over 785 participants since May 2020, and almost 315 apprentices and trainees have commenced with a new employer.

Currently, there are almost 70 participants on our active caseload.
Top 6 Occupations


  • Electrical
  • Plumbing
  • Carpentry
  • Hair & Beauty
  • Chefs
  • General Mechanic
For Individuals

Apprentices and trainees who have lost employment are encouraged to register.

Once on the register, apprentices and trainees will be assisted by one of our program officers until placed with a host employer through a Group Training Organisation (GTO), or directly with an employer, whilst also directing you to the most appropriate advice and assistance while you remain out of employment.
If you have an apprenticeship or traineeship position you would like to fill, please contact the AEN Office so we can forward potential candidates that meet your criteria.

For further information or to register for the program please visit Apprenticeship Employment Network.

Employment Data – May 2021

On Thursday this week, the Commonwealth released the May 2021 labour force data.

Key statistics - Seasonally adjusted estimates for May 2021:
  • Unemployment rate decreased to 5.1%.
  • Participation rate increased to 66.2%.
  • Employment increased to 13,125,100.
  • Employment to population ratio increased to 62.8%.
  • Underemployment rate decreased to 7.4%.
  • Monthly hours worked increased by 25 million hours.
graph news
Unemployment - In seasonally adjusted terms, in May 2021:
  • The unemployment rate decreased by 0.4 pts to 5.1%
  • The unemployment rate was 1.9 pts lower than May 2020, and 0.2 pts lower than March 2020
  • Unemployed people decreased by 53,000 to 701,100
  • Unemployed people decreased by 215,400 from May 2020 and was 22,400 lower than March 2020
  • The youth unemployment rate increased by 0.1 pts to 10.7%
  • The youth unemployment rate was 5.1 pts lower than May 2020, and 0.9 pts lower than March 2020
For further details, please visit Labour Force Australia.

Webinar: How Digital Skills Relate to Australian Apprenticeships

Digital skills are a vital and growing area of interest within the Australian skills landscape.

The majority of workforce roles now require generic digital skills, and there are increasing needs to technical digital skills.
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Join the AATIS expert panellists who will discuss:
  • The types of digital skills needed in Australia;
  • How the Australian VET system can deliver these skills; and
  • Initiatives targeting the digital workforce.
A facilitated discussion will follow about the role that Australian Apprenticeships have in delivering the digital workforce of the future.

Date: Tuesday 29 June 2021
Time: 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM AEST

To register for this free webinar, please visit Register AATIS webinar.

Wage Inspectorate Victoria Commissioner Appointed

Experienced regulator Robert Hortle has been appointed as the inaugural Commissioner of Wage Inspectorate Victoria, which will become an independent statutory authority on 1 July. Minister for Industrial Relations Tim Pallas announced Mr Hortle’s appointment as head of the newly established agency for a five-year term.

From 1 July, under the Wage Theft Act 2020, it will be a crime for an employer in Victoria to deliberately underpay employees or dishonestly withhold employee entitlements.

As Commissioner, Mr Hortle will lead Wage Inspectorate Victoria’s work to protect vulnerable employees from exploitation and hold employers to account if they commit wage theft.

For further information, please visit Wage Inspectorate Victoria Commissioner.

NCVER Update

Micro-credentials in VET

New analysis of short-course training in VET, often referred to as micro-credentials, reveals for the first time the size, extent, and characteristics of this form of training.

In 2019, 2.6 million students were enrolled in subjects that do not form part of a nationally recognised course, which the report refers to as ‘subject bundles’, out of a total of 4.2 million students who were enrolled in all VET.

The analysis clearly indicates that subject bundles are mainly concerned with regulation and skill maintenance, either explicitly or implicitly. This activity can be grouped under the broad headings of workplace safety, emergency preparedness, and authority to operate. This segment is a largely ‘private’ market, with more than 93% of subject bundles funded on a fee-for-service basis.

To access the full report please visit: An analysis of 'micro-credentials' in VET.

The stock of qualifications in Australia

A new report released this week analyses of the stock and distribution of qualifications in Australia reveals that, out of an estimated population of 16.1 million working-age Australians, 10.2 million people reported holding 15.4 million qualifications.

VET qualifications outnumbered higher education qualifications by almost 1 million. Certificates III and IV were the most prevalent. Just under half of these were in two fields of education: Engineering and Related Technologies, which includes entry pathways into many trade occupations, and Management and Commerce.

Among the people employed at the time of the survey with two or more qualifications, about a third had at least one qualification that was not at all relevant to their job. Often the most relevant qualification to a worker’s job was not their highest qualification or their most recent.

To access the full report please visit: The stock of qualifications in Australia.

Victorian Youth Week: 26 June - 2 July

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The Victorian Government is backing young Victorians with funding for dozens of events during the Victorian Youth Week.

Minister for Youth, Ros Spence, announced funding to support 97 Youth Week events and projects across the state from 26 June to 2 July. Youth Week celebrates the contributions, achievements and diverse experiences of Victorians aged between 12 and 25.

To find out more about local events, please visit Victorian Youth Week 2021 Grants.
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Head on over to GAN Australia and subscribe now.

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