Home AATIS Blog Part 5. Choosing the right employer


Part 5. Choosing the right employer

Searching and applying for Australian Apprenticeships can be challenging in many ways. In this post we’ll provide information and resources that will help you to understand the process, including:

  • Group Training Organisations (GTOs) or Direct employment 
  • What to look for in a quality employer 
  • Supervision and mentoring 
  • Application processes 
  • What to expect in the workplace

Group Training Organisations (GTOs) or Direct employment

There are many ways in which you can find an apprenticeship or traineeship job, or a potential employer. Most commonly, you can reach out to a Group Training Organisation (GTO) or work directly with an employer. It’s important to understand the types of employers and how they differ from one another.

Group Training Organisations (GTOs)

GTO’s employ Australian Apprentices across many industries. They are the direct employer of the apprentice or trainee, but they place them with a host employer for their day-to-day work. It is the GTO’s responsibility to support and train the apprentice or trainee throughout the Australian Apprenticeship. The GTO is also responsible for all administrative requirements.

There are many benefits of using a GTO and these include:

  • Providing additional support for job hunters, apprentices and trainees
  • They may have jobs needing to be filled, making the job search faster
  • Workplace safety checks and audits of host employers
  • Monitoring training and work
  • If an apprentice or trainee wishes to move or their employer does not have enough work, the GTO will look for another host employer

Direct employment

Direct employment is when an apprentice or trainee is employed directly by an employer, instead of through a GTO. The responsibilities of the employer are the same. Some of the benefits of direct employment include:

  • Providing complete, on the job training required for an Australian Apprenticeship
  • Greater likelihood of completing an Australian Apprenticeship with a single employer
  • Australian Apprenticeship Support Network (AASN) provide mentoring throughout the life of the apprenticeship or traineeship


What to look for in a quality employer

There are many qualities to look for when searching for an employer including respect, honesty and fairness. Beyond this, it is critically important that the employer provides a safe working environment, free from bullying and all types of discrimination or abuse. A quality employer will provide an appropriate introduction to the workplace and meet all occupational health and safety requirements. They will also inform apprentices or trainees of their rights and responsibilities and provide a structured training program with adequate supervision and support. It is important to determine whether a prospective employer can satisfy these elements before committing to an apprenticeship or traineeship agreement.
Click here to download the AATIS How to Approach Employers Guide.

Supervision and mentoring

Employers are required to appoint an Australian Apprentice with a workplace supervisor. The supervisor’s role is to support the apprentices’ ongoing development and can involve a mentoring arrangement. The influence of a supervisor shouldn’t be understated, as the more support and mentoring that can be provided, the greater the likelihood of the learner being successful. This is important for employers because an engaged learner will help to achieve a business’ goals.

Application processes

The following steps will explain the process of getting an apprenticeship or traineeship, from conducting research to when formal training begins.

  1. Research – Begin Australian Apprenticeship career research by exploring potential career options in the industries that best suit you and utilising resources to help identify your interests
  2. Preparation – Understand the benefits of doing an apprenticeship or traineeship, including potential financial incentives, wages, costs of training and job prospects
  3. Job Hunting – There are many methods of job hunting, from online job search sites to offline methods such as tapping into personal networks and even doorknocking . If you are feeling stuck when job hunting, you can seek the support of a career advisor
  4. Sign up – After finding the right job, all Australian Apprentices must then sign a formal training agreement. An AASN provider needs to be organised to visit the workplace and conduct the sign up

For further information you can visit: aapathways.com.au/job-hunting/steps

What to expect in the workplace

Prior to commencing employment, it is important for the apprentice or trainee to familiarise themself with the terms and conditions laid out in their training contract. The AASN provider that signed them up will be able to support them throughout the apprenticeship and if they have been employed through a GTO, they will also be able to provide support.

Tips for starting a new role

An employer will expect that their apprentice or trainee is appropriately dressed and on time for work every day. It is important that required duties are understood, so always ask questions if you’re uncertain about something. It’s also best to communicate regularly with supervisors if challenges are being faced. Whether it is regarding theory training or the workplace, supervisors should be able to help.
Lastly, the apprentice or trainee must remember to follow their training plan to see the competencies they have completed, as well as what requires completion.

That’s a wrap for our blog series!
We hope you’ve enjoyed the information we’ve presented and would love to hear from you if you have any questions.
Email: contact@aatis.com.au
Phone: 1800 338 022