How it works

How Australian Apprenticeships work

Transform your business and invest in your local community

You can transform your business by employing an apprentice or trainee – because skilled staff are the drivers of performance.

It is also an investment in your business, your community and your industry to ensure you are ready to take advantage of whatever the future marketplace has to offer.

Right now is the best possible time for businesses to learn from the past and ensure we don’t recreate future skills shortages.

Employer and apprentice electronics

The government encourages employers to invest in skills for the future of your industry and business through employment of Australian Apprentices and for upskilling existing staff.

Your community also benefits. Employing locals keeps money circulating in the community and underpins a vibrant, healthy regional economy.

Your local MEGT Australian Apprenticeships Centre (AAC) staff live in the region and are trained in local area needs, training services and locally available incentives.

Australian Government initiatives currently being offered to help you keep your business, and your community, prosperous may include financial Incentives.

How it all works

Your national and complete service

MEGT Australian Apprenticeships Centre has offices in every state of Australia and the ACT and has  systems and procedures that make it easy for multi-site employers to manage their apprenticeships and traineeships wherever the work-site may be.

It can be hard to keep up with all the differing education requirements if you employ staff in more than one state of Australia:

The Australian Apprenticeships Support Service is a federal initiative.

Training and education is delivered through State Governments.

Wages and conditions vary by industry, by State Award and individual workplace agreements.

If you have multi-state location,s the MEGT National Business Development team will help you (at no cost) to navigate the complexities of the different state jurisdictions. Paperwork and processes for national clients is streamlined and user friendly to make it easy for businesses with offices in different parts of Australia to manage their employment of Australian Apprentices.

Whether you have one work-site or multi sites, the local MEGT AAC Consultants are available to visit you at your workplace to help make your apprenticeships and traineeships easier. This is a totally free service.

The MEGT Online service allows you to keep track of the status of each Australian Apprentice, provides pre-populated claim forms for you to download and information on when Incentives are due to be paid. Call your local Consultant for your personal password and login or click on the client here to go to MEGT Australian Apprenticeships Contracts Online.

Call us on 13 MEGT (136348) – we’re here to help

Quick overview of how it all works

It’s our job to make it easy for you. MEGT Australian Apprenticeships Centre (AAC) is an Australian Government funded program designed to help employers with the processes and procedures involved in taking on an Australian Apprentice. It’s a free service.

One of our AAC Consultants can visit your workplace and help you and your apprentice or trainee complete the paperwork required by government.

In a nutshell, here is what you have to do:

  1. Employ a person to be an apprentice or a trainee. MEGT can help you source an Australian Apprentice. Follow this link to our free jobs board and upload your vacancy. All applications will be sent direct to you.
  2. Contact MEGT Australian Apprenticeships Centre and organise a time for a Consultant to visit you and your apprentice or trainee  (and their parent or guardian if required). You
    can book this through our online formor call 13 MEGT (13 6348).
  3. Choose a Registered Training Organisation  (RTO) to provide the training for your Australian Apprentice and enrol them. Your apprentice or trainee must be registered with the State Training Authority (STA). Our team can help with this process and provide you with a list of all appropriate RTOs. It’s a User Choice system.
  4. MEGT assesses and advises your business of eligibility to receive Australian government employer incentives. Follow this link for an indicative list of Australian government incentives.
  5. Complete and sign a National Training Contract. We will lodge it for you with the State Training Authority.
  6. We will give you all the forms that need to be signed and explain what needs to be done.
  7. Your MEGT Consultant will advise you of your obligations and responsibilities and will contact both you and your Australian Apprentice at different stages throughout their Apprenticeship to monitor progress.
  8. Throughout the Australian Apprenticeship, your MEGT AAC Consultant will facilitate any government incentive payments you and/or your Australian Apprentice may be eligible for and provide support as required.
  9. Once the competencies of the structured training and employment have been achieved, the RTO or State Training Authority issues a nationally recognised qualification. The Australian Apprenticeship is complete.
  10. The employer will receive a claim form to apply for a completion incentive payment.

Don’t worry about a thing. We’ll help you with all the paperwork and the processes.

We are experts in both state and federal requirements.

Call us on 13 MEGT (136348) – we’re here to help

The full details

What is an Australian Apprenticeship?

Apprenticeships and traineeships are jobs that combine paid work and structured training. They include:

  • paid employment under an appropriate industrial arrangement (for example, an award or enterprise agreement)
  • nationally recognised training.

The difference between an apprenticeship and a traineeship
Traineeships generally take between twelve to twenty four months to complete. Vocations are available in a range of areas, including Business, Retail, Community Health, Child Care, Financial Services and many more.

Apprenticeships generally last between thirty six to forty eight months and cover trade areas such as Building and Construction, Horticulture, Cooking, the Automotive industry, Engineering, Manufacturing and many more.

Organisations involved

  • Australian, State and Territory Governments
  • peak level bodies such as Industry Skills Councils and employer and employee associations
  • Australian Apprenticeships Centres (AACs), such as MEGT Australian Apprenticeships Centre
  • Registered Training Organisations (RTOs)
  • Group Training Organisations (GTOs)
  • Secondary Schools – for Australian School-based Apprenticeships.

The government bodies involved

  • The Australian Apprenticeships Support Service is a federal initiative.
  • Training and Education is delivered through state governments.
  • Wages and conditions vary by industry, by Award and individual workplace agreements.
  • The Australian Government offers a range of financial incentives to eligible employers and employees to create and fill an Australian Apprenticeship position. In general terms, Australian Government involvement is to help increase the number of skilled or training employment opportunities in the Australian economy.

State Government

State and Territory Governments most often participate in the area of training, that is the registration and auditing of training organisations and funding of the provision of the training. State and Territory Governments may also offer employment related initiatives and incentives.

Department of Education and Training

This Australian Government Department is responsible for Australian Apprenticeships development and implementation.

This includes the contracting out of services such as Industry Skills Councils (ISCs), Australian Apprenticeships Centres (AACs) and Job Network Members/Job Services (JSAs), and the delivery of many vocational education and employment related initiatives.

The Department of Education and Training also funds the Australian Quality Training Framework (AQTF) which is the national set of standards which assures nationally consistent, high-quality training and assessment services for the clients of Australia’s vocational education and training system.

State and Territory Training Authorities

The State and Territory Training Authorities (STAs) have responsibility for the registration of nationally endorsed Training Package qualifications for use in their State or Territory.

STAs also establish public funding levels for the qualifications they register. This is often referred to as ‘User Choice’ funding. Some qualifications in a Training Package may not be covered by this public funding.

The State and Territory Training Authorities have the responsibility for the registration and auditing of Australian Apprenticeships training providers .

State and Territory Training Authorities are also responsible for formally registering Australian Apprentices, and so are the agencies where the ‘Training Agreement’ is lodged. Naturally they are also the agency responsible for approval of variations to Training Agreements, including suspensions and cancellations. The approval of an early completion of an Australian Apprenticeship is also their responsibility.

Further to this, State and Territory Governments may also be involved in the practical issues that sometimes arise between an Australian Apprentice and their employer or the training provider. Most have field staff in metropolitan and regional areas that aim to help resolve issues.

State or Territory Training Authorities usually issue the Australian Apprentice a certificate or acknowledgement on completion of their Australian Apprenticeship.

Industry Skills Councils

Industry Skills Councils (ISCs) are peak industry bodies involved in the development of Training Packages that are a qualification framework for specific industries.

ISCs consult with employers and industry stakeholders, such as employers and Registered Training Organisations, in developing these qualification frameworks.

The qualification outcomes can range from Certificate level I to Advanced Diploma or in some industries to higher level post-graduate qualifications.

ISCs also provide advice on their industries including identifying current and potential areas of skill shortage.

Australian Apprenticeships Centres

Australian Apprenticeships Centres (AACs), such as MEGT’s AAC, have the responsibility for determining eligibility for most Commonwealth incentives.

An Australian Apprenticeships Centre is an organisation contracted to the Australian government  to market and administer the Australian Apprenticeships Support Services Programme. An AAC provides assistance to employers and their apprentices/trainees by:

  • completing and lodging National Training Contracts with the State Training Authority
  • determining eligibility for participation and government funding
    processing incentive payments to employers (where applicable)
    providing advice to employers and Australian Apprentices on relevant training packages
  • monitoring the progress of the Australian Apprenticeship.

Registered Training Organisations

An RTO may be a public organisation (for example a TAFE) or private organisation. An employer may also apply to become an RTO. RTOs must adhere to nationally consistent standards. Their performance is audited by State or Territory Governments. RTOs may deliver training outside of Australian Apprenticeships, such as ‘fee for service’ courses, ‘pre-apprenticeships’ programs or higher level courses that articulate into tertiary study.

RTOs participate in the development of an individual Training Plan for an Australian Apprentice, along with the employer and Australian Apprentice. The Training Plan details the units of competency to be completed to obtain a qualification. The units must be selected on the basis of the packaging rules set out in the Training Package.

People undertaking a qualification have the opportunity to have their current skills, knowledge and experiences recognised formally, without having to undergo unnecessary training if they are already competent. This is known as a Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) assessment which is conducted by an RTO.

RTOs also conduct Recognition of Current Competency (RCC) assessments where a person who has already completed some formal training in the relevant field gains ‘credit’ and does not have to repeat the training.

RTOs provide the teaching and often the teaching materials required to take Australian Apprenticeships through the Training Plan. The RTO can provide training in a combination of ways such as ‘on campus’, in the workplace, or by ‘distance education’.

RTOs must keep in contact with employers to maximise the level of integration of the training with the Australian Apprentice’s duties in the workplace.

The RTO is responsible for assessing or validating that the Australian Apprentice is competent in the units set out in the Training Plan. The RTO issues a certificate to Australian Apprentices who successfully complete the requirements of the qualification.

Group Training Organisations

Group Training Organisations (GTOs) don’t train groups of people. They employ Australian Apprentices and hire them out (labour hire) to different businesses on a short or long-term basis.

This approach enables businesses to take on an Australian Apprentice even though in some cases they cannot provide an Australian Apprentice with the broad range of skills needed to complete their training.

Group Training Organisations take on the contractual and administrative responsibilities of the employer (the payment of wages and superannuation for example), and also participate in the recruitment of Australian Apprentices and often ‘pre-apprenticeships’ skills development training.

Job Services Organisations

Job Services Organisations (or JSAs) are organisations contracted by the Commonwealth Government to help employers recruit staff and to help people to find jobs. Filling Australian Apprenticeships positions makes up just one element of the work of ESOs/JSOs/JSAs. They also help develop a job seeker’s ‘job readiness’ and assist in their job hunting activities.

Australian Apprenticeship Support Network

From 1 July 2015 the Australian Apprenticeships Support Programme will change to the Australian Apprenticeship Support Network.

The Training Contract

Decide which trade training provider your apprentice will go to. A trade training provider is a Registered Training Organisation (RTO). Your local MEGT Australian Apprenticeships Centre will give you a list and contact numbers.

Contact your local Australian Apprenticeships Centre (AAC) as soon as you employ the apprentice. The Consultant will come out and see you and your apprentice with a Training Contract for you both to sign. This is called signing up your trainee or apprentice.

The AAC will outline your obligations and help you fill out the paperwork. Where the apprentice is under 18 years of age their parent or guardian is also a signatory to the Training Contract.

A Training Contract is an agreement to work and train together with the help of an RTO. The RTO develops a training program, specifying the competencies to be obtained, the training to be undertaken and the delivery mode (either on or off-the-job).

Make sure you are clear about any fees your selected RTO may charge and whether a concession may apply, or if your apprentice is eligible for Recognition of Prior Learning (credits) for previous employment or training.

You must be able to demonstrate that a suitably qualified person will be supervising the Australian Apprentice and that the on-the-job training you provide will enable the Australian Apprentice to become a competent worker.

You must be prepared to allow the apprentice to attend off-the-job training if it applies or be withdrawn from routine duties if the training is done on-the-job.

Under the terms of a Training Contract, you must:

  • prepare and provide relevant training that will equip the apprentice with the skills to work at your business
  • provide appropriate supervision while the apprentice is at work
  • make sure that the apprentice is enrolled with an RTO
  • provide employment for the minimum hours per week in accordance with the individual State requirement
  • provide a safe place for the apprentice to work and show that you
  • understand and carry out occupational health and safety practices
  • allow your apprentice to attend the off-the-job training during
    normal working hours (this is paid time) where this applies
  • allow the RTO access to your apprentice for training and assessment during normal work hours
  • meet legal obligations
  • ensure a WorkCover policy exists
  • pay the agreed wage and inform your apprentice of the terms and conditions of employment under the relevant award
  • provide detailed pay slips
  • arrange for superannuation payments for your apprentice.
  • adhere to the provisions of Equal Opportunity and Anti-Discrimination legislation, and not permit apprentices to be verbally, physically, or sexually harassed in the workplace.

Financial support

The Australian and State Governments strongly encourage employers to take on apprentices by providing a range of financial incentives. When you first see your local MEGT Australian Apprenticeships Centre Consultant, they will assess your business for financial incentives and will advise you which payments you may be eligible for.

Your local MEGT Australian Apprenticeships Centre will help you process the paperwork and will monitor the apprenticeship so you can concentrate on what you do best and grow your business.

Information pack

Information pack

Find out more
Handy checklist

Handy checklist

Find out more

Australian Apprenticeships Centres will be changing from 1 July 2015 to Australian Apprenticeship Support Networks.

MEGT (Australia) Ltd trading as MEGT is an Australian Apprenticeships Centre contracted by the Australian government as represented by the Department of Education and Training to provide Australian Apprenticeships Support Services to employers and Australian Apprentices. MEGT is one of a number of Australian Apprenticeships Centres in Australia. This website does not represent the Australian Government. If you wish to access information about Australian Apprenticeships from the Australian government, you should access the website

Australian Apprenticeships Incentives Program Guidelines and Appendices may be viewed on the Department of Education and Training website.

Australian Apprenticeships are Australian Government initiatives.

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