Apprenticeships and Traineeships

What are they? Do they suit me? What level of education do I need? Do I get paid? Do I have to go to college? What does a boilermaker do? Does a carpenter lay carpet? Does an Automotive Technician need to be smart? How long does my apprenticeship take? Do I get paid when I go to college? Do I get paid for overtime?

All of the above questions have been asked by prospective apprentices and trainees, just like you, at some time in our company’s long history of placing apprentices and trainees in South East Queensland.
What is an apprenticeship?
An apprenticeship is an entry level position into a trade. It is made up from a combination of on the job (worksite) and off the job training (Registered Training Organisation, College). Once you have completed all the required modules for your apprenticeship or traineeship you will come away with a nationally recognised qualification.
The average apprenticeship has a duration of approximately 3-4 years depending on you. If you put the effort in and complete your training early and you have satisfied your employer that you are as competent on the worksite as you are at college, you may be signed off early.
A traineeship has a duration of somewhere between 1 and 3 years. The same rules apply to a traineeship as they do for an apprenticeship.
Do apprenticeships and traineeships suit me?
Just about anyone can undertake an apprenticeship or traineeship. It comes down to what you want out of your career, and what you are most interested in. Think of it like this, you may enjoy cooking at home and are good at it , but if you can't see yourself cooking for hundreds of people a night and have a passion for it, becoming a chef is probably not for you. It was generally thought that if you were good at school that you would go on to university to become a professional, and if you were not as good at school work, you would become a trades person. Today there is no truth to that statement whatsoever. Most apprenticeships and traineeships today require good school results, as well as a passion for what you want to do. At Smart Employment Solutions we understand that most applicants like you, don’t have a good understanding about different trades. Our Employment Officers are there to assist you to make an informed decision on which trade you may wish to make a career out of.
What level of education do I require?
Most apprenticeships/ traineeships require a minimum level of year 10, but in todays environment most employers are looking for year 12 graduates. Some trades, like carpentry or anything in the construction area will also require you to have a reliable vehicle and current drivers licence, along with a Construction Industry Occupational Helath & Safety (White) Card. With the Engineering industry this is most times not as important because you are travelling to the same job site everyday. So the real answer to the question is; that it varies depending on the apprenticeship/ traineeship and the employer.
Do I get paid?
The answer is simple, yes. The amount that you will be paid will vary depending on the trade that you choose and the year level that you are at. For example, a first year carpenter will be paid slightly more than a first year motor mechanic, but when you are finished your apprenticeship/ traineeship, you will be worth what the market calls for, or is paying. The other questions; do I get paid to go to college? and; will I be paid overtime? Again, the answer is yes – to both.
Can I be an apprentice or trainee?
As a general rule, only Australian citizens and New Zealand citizens who have entered Australia on a valid passport, have unrestricted rights to employment in Australia. Any other person wanting to work in Australia must have a visa allowing employment.
Why is it important?
The right to legal employment in Australia does not guarantee eligibility to participate in apprenticeships or traineeships; for example holders of a Working Holiday Visa (subclass 417) are not eligible.
DET’s policy is that the following persons are eligible to participate in apprenticeships or traineeships:
  • Australian citizens
  • New Zealand citizens
  • Persons with permanent residency visas
  • Persons with temporary protection visas
  • Persons who hold temporary or partner visas for subclass 309, 310, 820, or 826
  • Dependents of persons who are holders of a Business Long Stay visa under subclass 457
  • Dependents of persons who are holders of a Skill Independent Regional visa under subclass 495 (not applicable to Brisbane or Gold Coast districts)
  • Dependents of persons who are holders of a Skilled Regional Sponsored (Provisional) visa under subclasses 475 and 487 (if sponsored by an eligible relative, the dependent must reside OUTSIDE the Brisbane metropolitan area, if sponsored by a State/Territory government, they must reside OUTSIDE the Brisbane metropolitan and Gold Coast areas)
  • Spouse and/or dependents who are holders of Provisional visa subclass 163 – State/Territory Sponsored Business Owner
  • Persons holding a 461 visa is evidence that the holder is the dependant (family member) of a NZ Citizen. Immigration has advised that DET will need to check the expiry date to ensure the person can complete the training in the period remaining on the visa.
If DET discovers that the apprentice or trainee did not meet the residency eligibility criteria at the time the contract was registered the training contract will be cancelled. This could have financial implications in terms of recovery of incentives and/or payments made to various parties.

Got Questions?

If you would like to talk to someone about an apprenticeship or traineeship, please contact us at :
or phone us on : 13 30 24