Apprenticeship Employment Network

AE News Volume 14, Issue 45

Friday, 19th November 2021
Hi Reader!

Upcoming Events

25 Nov 2021 - AEN AGM
16 Feb 2022 - AEN & GAN Awards Presentation Dinner

Australian Training Awards - Winners!

Aust Training Awards 2
The Australian Training Awards were held online on Thursday 18 November with some States hosting local dinners and streaming in live.

Some of the key Award winners include:
    Special mention to WPC Group for winning the Australian Apprentice Employer Award for their ESSO program in Victoria. This is the second time WCP Group has won this national award in recent times.

    Congratulations to all the finalists and winners.

    For further information and to view a full list of the finalists and winners, please visit Australian Training Awards.

    Local Jobs Program Activities – Request for Proposal

    The Department of Education, Skills and Employment is seeking responses to a Request for Proposal (RFP) from entities including employers, employment services and training providers; and the community support and education sectors (respondents) interested in delivering Local Jobs Program Activities (LJP Activities) under the Local Jobs Program (LJP) 2021-2023 in 26 Employment Regions.

    The objectives of LJP Activities are to:
    • enable local stakeholders to work in collaboration with their Facilitator and local Taskforce to design solutions to local issues regarding employment in their region and opportunities to better skill participants to meet local employer demand;
    • enable eligible participants in the jobactive (or any replacement services delivered under the New Employment Services Model) ParentsNext, Transition to Work, New Employment Services Trial, or Online Employment Services caseload to participate in activities; and
    • connect other elements of the LJP for the ER and encourage collaboration to address one or more priorities identified in the Local Jobs Plan(s), including LJP Activities which include in kind and/or complementary funding.
    This RFP is inviting initiatives that assist job seekers into employment and/or training with a preference for projects that commence in 2022 and are completed by end June 2023.

    To find out more, go to Austender reference: LJPLRF Nov 21/23 or contact Carmel & Melissa at

    More Freedoms as Victoria Hits 90% Vaccination Rate

    Victoria is set to hit the 90 per cent double dose milestone for eligible people in the coming days. The Acting Chief Health Officer has determined that almost all remaining restrictions in Victoria will ease from 19 November 2021 – reaching Phase D of the National Plan.

    The vaccinated economy will remain, as will masks in some high-risk settings – as both are important in reducing risk as we get back to normal.

    A complete list of the new COVIDSafe settings are available at Coronavirus.

    A new online portal offering clear and simple ‘checklist’ advice for cases, contacts, workplaces and schools is published at Coronavirus Checklist, which will also include advice on how to have the conversation with your family and friends.

    AI and the Future of Skills, Volume 1

    AI and future skills
    Artificial intelligence (AI) and robotics are major breakthrough technologies that are transforming the economy and society. The OECD’s Artificial Intelligence and the Future of Skills (AIFS) project is developing a programme to assess the capabilities of AI and robotics, and their impact on education and work.

    This volume reports on the first step of the project: identifying which capabilities to assess and which tests to use in the assessment. It builds on an online expert workshop that explored this question from the perspectives of both psychology and computer science.
    The volume consists of expert contributions that review skills taxonomies and tests in different domains of psychology, and efforts in computer science to assess AI and robotics. It provides extensive discussion on the strengths and weaknesses of different approaches, and outlines directions for the project. The report can therefore be a resource for the research community of multiple fields and policy makers who wish to obtain deeper insight into the complexity of machine capabilities.

    To access the full report, please visit AI and the Future of Skills.

    Licence Scheme to Protect Engineered Stone Workers

    Victorian Businesses working with engineered stone will require a licence by 15 November 2022 under new regulations to help protect workers from exposure to deadly silica dust.

    From May next year, the Occupational Health and Safety Amendment (Crystalline Silica) Regulations 2021 also introduce new duties for businesses across a range of industries that work with other materials containing silica – including quarrying, construction and tunnelling.

    The regulations will also extend the ban, first made in 2019, on uncontrolled dry-cutting, grinding and polishing of engineered stone, and prohibit the use of compressed air for cleaning and untreated water to suppress dust.

    Licence holders must comply with new duties, including providing:
    • Safety training and instruction for workers, as well as information to job applicants
    • Health and atmosphere monitoring reports to Worksafe Victoria
    • Departing employees with a record of their work with engineered stone and advice about regular health assessments.
    Engineered stone suppliers will only be able to supply licenced businesses and must keep records.

    From 15 May 2022, businesses working with other materials containing silica must identify and document any high-risk silica work and the measures used to control those risks and provide safety training and instruction to employees and information to job applicants who may engage in this work.

    The regulations include infringements or court-imposed fines of between 1.2 and 100 penalty units for an individual or six and 500 penalty units for a body corporate apply.

    Licence applications for working with engineered stone are now open and can be lodged online at WorkSafe.

    For more information on silica, please visit WorkSafe - Working with Crystalline-Silica.

    Vale: Allan Robert Ballagh

    December 24, 1953 - November 3, 2021

    Earlier this week the online funeral of Allan Ballagh was held. Many people within the VET sector would know of Allan, he held the position of TAFE director at RMIT for many years and personally supported hundreds of people that are still in the sector today. Alan was a strong advocate for apprenticeships/traineeships and was responsible for innovative training programs and facilities like the advanced manufacturing Hub in Carlton over a decade ago.

    Our deepest sympathies go to Allan’s family and friends.

    To share your wishes with family and friends, please visit Allan Robert Ballagh Obituary.

    New Safe Work Australia Website

    Last week, Safe Work Australia released it new website. Some of the changes you will notice include:
    • a clean look and feel
    • content that’s easier to read
    • data that’s easier to find
    • filter options in the search function
    • improved accessibility
    • improved navigation experience
    Safe work australia

    Hume Business Employment Grants

    The $1 million Hume Business Employment Grants Program will provide incentives to local businesses to offer secure employment for up to 100 eligible residents in Hume City. Offered as part of Council’s COVID-19 Recovery and Reactivation Plan, this program will provide a strong financial boost for local jobs and local businesses, with a key focus on employment outcomes of twelve months or more at completion of the program.

    Three grant streams are available:

    Stream 1 – Hume Trainees and Apprentice Incentive Program
    This stream supports businesses that have engaged an apprentice/trainee formally and are receiving Federal Government support, following which they may apply for an additional Hume City Council subsidy of $10,000. The grant will support the business to hire the employee for at least 12 months upon completion of the apprenticeship/traineeship.

    Stream 2 – Hume Internship, Cadetship and Industry Training Program
    This stream will be applicable to businesses with a future bulk recruitment need or succession planning requirement. This stream is available where there is an identified need for a minimum of 5 positions. A payment of $10,000 per employee is available, made up of incentives and training costs and delivered over a period of 12 months. Council will support the business with labour market facilitation and identification of local unemployed talent through the Hume Employment and Learning Community network and community service providers. The business must engage with Council. Training partners (chosen by employer) will also work with the business to tailor training to suit their requirements. The grant will offer incentives to businesses to take on Hume interns or cadets as well as pay for any tailored training such as licenses, certifications and pre-employment checks that are not covered by any government funding.

    Stream 3 – Disadvantaged Jobseeker Incentive Program
    This stream will provide for Council to match existing wage subsidies via a grant paid by jobactive and Disability Employment Services (DES) providers, by extending the employment period duration from 6 months to 12 months. Existing wage subsidies range from $1,650 to $10,000 depending on barriers and level of disadvantage that an unemployed jobseeker is faced with.

    This stream will be assessed on a case-by-case basis and will assess jobseeker’s whose employment is at risk prior to 26 weeks through unforeseeable circumstances. Funding will also be available to assist in the creation of new jobs for people with a disability. Funding can be used to strengthen the employee’s individual capacity in the workplace and it will provide the opportunity for employers to further invest in the individual to:
    • upskill,
    • develop the individual employees, and
    • provide additional support such as a mentor.
    For further information including eligibility criteria, please visit Hume Business Employment Grants.

    OctoberVET Ballarat 2021

    The fourteenth OctoberVET Ballarat is online, on Thursday 25 November from 11.00am - 12.30pm AEDT.

    'The Beyond COVID OctoberVET' features research by RAVE (a group of researchers at FedUni based in the School of Education) and others on a range of COVID-related and other issues in VET and adult education.
    The program will include the following presentations:

    Apprenticeships: What would it take?
    Gary Workman, Executive Director, Apprentice Employment Network (AEN)

    The curious case of jobs and training in retail and hospitality
    Erica Smith (FedUni), Richard Robinson (University of Queensland) & Darryn Snell (RMIT University)

    Teacher-student relationships in alternative secondary education
    Anthony Pearce, Federation University

    VET student employment outcomes during COVID-19
    Peter Fieger, Federation University

    'And now Women's Sheds’: Scoping the Shed field Internationally
    Barry Golding & Annette Foley, Federation University

    The final program is now available.

    Registrations are open
    Please register at Survey Monkey. A Teams link will be sent to registrants a few days before the event.

    NCVER Update

    Skills utilisation in the workplace: the other side of the coin

    Through analysis of the Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia (HILDA) survey, this research examined patterns of skill under-utilisation across Australian workers in two industry sectors: manufacturing and early childhood education and care.

    Interviews with employers from these two sectors examined what organisations are doing to understand the skills of their workers and what, if any, mechanisms are in place to maximise skills utilisation.

    Webinar: Attracting industry experts to become VET practitioners: a journey, not a destination

    There is consensus that the Australian VET sector faces several workforce issues including the ageing of VET practitioners, the high level of casualisation, the need to maintain industry currency as well as increase the capacity of trainers.

    The availability, knowledge and experience of industry experts provide great potential for adding value to the VET workforce and addressing critical shortages to ensure the VET sector has the capacity to meet workforce development needs, particularly post-pandemic.

    This research explores strategies to attract industry experts to become, and remain, VET practitioners.

    A free webinar will be held on 8 December 2021, 2:00 PM ACDT where findings from the research, including how training organisations can recruit and retain industry experts, will be discussed.

    The webinar panel includes:
    • Dr Darryl Dymock and Professor Mark Tyler from Griffith University
    • Mr Ian Curry from the Australian Manufacturing Workers' Union
    • Ms Michelle Circelli from NCVER.
    Register for the free webinar now!

    Partial Scholarships for Women in the Training and Development Sector

    Partial scholarships of $1,000 - $5,000 per person are available for emerging, middle and senior women leaders to undertake leadership development programs commencing in 2022.

    Women & Leadership Australia's programs offer tangible and transformative support for women leaders at all levels.

    Applications close 15 December.

    Retrenched Apprentices and Trainees Program

    Retrenched Apprentices and Trainees Program Logo
    Out of Trade Banner
    This program has now supported 847 participants since May 2020, and 351 apprentices and trainees have commenced with a new employer.
    Currently, there are 33 participants on our active caseload:
    • Electrical - 12
    • Plumbing - 6
    • Carpentry - 5
    • Other trades - 10
    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.

    VCCI – Apprentice Mental Health Workshop

    Mental Health apprentices
    Apprentices are particularly vulnerable to experiencing poor mental health, as Australian data on the higher prevalence of mental illness in young people clearly demonstrates.

    Supporting apprentices who may be struggling as well as managing mental health risks in the workplace are positive things you can focus on to ensure good outcomes for both your apprentices and your business.

    If you employ apprentices and want to improve mental health in your workplace, join VCCI's last FREE interactive workshop where they will talk through the issues that matter most to both senior leaders and frontline managers.
    • Thursday 9 December, 9:00am - 12:30pm
    For further details, please visit Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
    Do you want to be kept up to date with everything that’s happening with GAN Australia and the wider VET sector?

    Head on over to GAN Australia and subscribe now.

    Thanks to our Industry Partners

    GAN Australia Logo Landscape

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