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FAQs for Job Hunters

What is AATIS and how can this website help me?

The Australian Apprenticeships & Traineeships Information Service consists of useful information and resources for people considering career options, employers looking at recruitment and those providing support and advice.

For job seekers AATIS is a great place to start your research. It has ideas about how to work out your ideal career, information about each industry and what apprenticeships and traineeships are available plus links to all the other organisations involved in Australian Apprenticeship. There is also the Steps to an Australian Apprenticeship to help you get started.

AATIS does not advertise jobs or training courses. We do not sponsor people who want to come to Australia, and we do not employ apprentices or trainees. AATIS provides all the information and resources you need to find your ideal apprenticeship or traineeship, your new staff member and up to date information.

What are the benefits of doing an apprenticeship or a traineeship?

Completing an apprenticeship or a traineeship has many benefits as a pathway into a career. These include:

  • Earning a wage while you learn.
  • Developing practical skills specific to the occupation or industry you are interested in.
  • Experiencing training that is hands-on and delivered in the workplace, in a classroom, or a combination of both approaches.
  • Gaining a nationally recognised qualification which can provide the basis for further education and training over the course of your working life.
  • Potentially accessing government financial support and other benefits to assist with the costs incurred whilst you are undertaking your training.
  • Updating skills in an area you already work in.
  • Increasing your value as a qualified employee.

Your apprenticeship or traineeship can also be used as a pathway to a higher level qualification, including other vocational education and training qualifications, and university qualifications.

What types of apprenticeships and traineeships are there?

Apprenticeships and traineeships are established across 50 industries. Most people know about the common jobs like carpentry, plumbing, automotive mechanic and electrician. But there are thousands of other jobs that can be Australian Apprenticeships. 

Your career pathway can start with apprenticeships or traineeships in industries like community services and health, travel and tourism, communication and information technology, financial services, agriculture and horticulture, and government.

You can use this website to find out more about what jobs can be done as an apprenticeship or traineeship, and what is involved in these roles. 

There’s also industry information that can help you build an understanding of the range of industries and job roles that can be done as Australian Apprenticeships. Find out information including growth in that industry, the most common types of apprenticeship and traineeship jobs, and industry specific job hunting tips.

Can you do an apprenticeship or traineeship as an adult?

Yes, you can. There is no upper age limit for the commencement of an apprenticeship or traineeship, however, there are some limiting factors which should be taken into consideration.There may be 'adult apprentice' wage rates that apply to apprentices and trainees over 21 years old. Wages may be lower than your current or previous wage, so all potential adult apprentices and trainees need to consider if they can live on an apprentice wage over the period of training.

The term 'adult apprenticeship' can sometimes be confusing as it can mean something different depending on the context in which it is used. According to the Fair Work Ombudsman website, an adult apprentice is anyone over the age of 21. At this age, apprentices and trainees may be eligible to receive adult apprentice or trainee rates of pay set out in the relevant award.

Employers taking on an adult apprentice may be eligible to receive incentives if the age of the adult apprentice is 21 or over. In another case a 'mature aged' apprentice for incentive purposes is classified as anyone over 45 years of age who is employed as an apprentice or trainee. 

The best contact point to discuss all this is an Australian Apprenticeship Support Network provider.

Who can I talk to for some career advice?

If you are still at school or at another education or training organisation there may be a careers advisor on campus who can help you.

If you are starting your search online, have a look at the Quizzes and Resources on our website which include the career interest explorer tool that matches your interests to occupations, free practice aptitiude quizes, interactive literacy and numeracy quizes, job pathway charts and more.

Check the MySkills website which provides a lot of information about different jobs and careers. This site also runs the VET alumni program for people who have moved through the VET system and are happy to guide people entering the system

Once you have started you can look at these sites which provide contact details for professional career advisors who will charge for their service.

  • CICA - The Career Industry Council of Australia which is the national peak body for the career industry
  • CDAA - Career Development Association of Australia

Where can I go for help if my apprenticeship or traineeship is not working out?

It is important to seek help if you are having problems at work. If possible, speak to someone at your workplace. If this is not possible you need to find someone else to help you.

Each state and territory government has field officers to help resolve difficulties with an Australian Apprenticeship. 

Apprenticeship Network providers also support employers and potential apprentices, as will a Group Training Organisation if they are involved. The Registered Training Organisation delivering the training can also be a good contact point.

Our post-recruitment page has all the information you’ll need for once you’ve started your apprenticeship or traineeship, including links to support services and organisations. 

Training Information

Should I do a pre-apprenticeship before starting an apprenticeship?

A pre-apprenticeship is entry-level training which can provide a pathway into the industry of your choice. Generally, they are offered in the traditional trades industries, such as Carpentry, Electrical, Plumbing and Automotive. Not all apprenticeships have a designated pre-apprenticeship course and not all apprenticeship courses allow credits from a pre-apprenticeship. A list of pre-apprenticeship courses can be found here.

Some employers in certain trades, especially the licenced trades such as electrical and plumbing, prefer apprentices to have completed a pre-apprenticeship so that they have basic skills before they begin work. It is important to remember that you do not work during a pre-apprenticeship program so you do not earn wages and in many cases you have to pay to do a pre-apprenticeship course.

Do apprentices and trainees have to go to TAFE?

Apprentices and trainees all have to do formal training but this doesn’t have to be at TAFE. 

Registered Training Organisations (RTO) deliver the formal off-the-job training for Australian Apprentices. A Registered Training Organisation may be a TAFE or it could be a private training provider. 

You and your employer choose which RTO you want to train with and you need to consider:

  • Which RTO can deliver the training you need for your qualification?
  • Which RTO you can get to if you need to do off-the-job training?
  • Which RTO has a good reputation for the course you need to study?
  • Which RTO will work with you and your employer to make a training plan which matches the needs of your apprenticeship with your new employer?
  • Which RTO will provide you and your employer with the support you may need throughout the training?

We have more information on how apprenticeship training works.

Job Hunting Information

Can AATIS find me an apprenticeship or traineeship job?

Unfortunately, we do not have jobs, advertise job vacancies or have any links to employers.

However, our web site is designed to help you find and apprenticeship or traineeship and there are lots of ideas and tips about job hunting to help you with this process. The Steps to an Australian Apprenticeship explain how to go from career research through to getting signed up.

You should also register with you nearest Group Training Organisation as they specialise in apprenticeship employment, and contact an Australian Apprenticeship Support Network provider.

How do I find an apprenticeship or traineeship?

Finding an apprenticeship or traineeship is the same as finding any job, however there are some organisations that are apprenticeship or traineeship specific to assist you. You can also look on Job Search Websites for live vacancies.

Australian Apprenticeship Support Network providers have a free career service and apprenticeship or traineeship only vacancies on their websites.

Group Training Organisations specialise in apprenticeship employment and will also have available opportunities on their websites.

Other options are to door-knock local businesses, follow companies on social media for notifications on any openings or pop-up interviews, and consider asking your network of friends and family for referrals.

The Steps to an Australian Apprenticeship explains in more detail, how to go from career research, searching for an apprenticeship or traineeship, and the sign up process.

If you’re an adult and are keen to do an apprenticeship, the process is the same but for extra tips you can access more information on the Adult Apprenticeships Job Hunting Tips page on the website.

International Students and Visa Holders

I am not an Australian Citizen and/or do not live in Australia, can I become an Australian Apprentice?

Australian Apprenticeships consist of both employment and training. The employer and apprentice must be based in Australia.

Your eligibility to apply for an Australian Apprenticeship is based on the type of visa you hold when you are in Australia. To find the correct, up to date information about which visa holders can apply for Australian Apprenticeships you can contact the Department of Home Affairs, and if you are in Australia already contact your local Australian Apprenticeship Support Network provider.

We do not sponsor individuals who want to come to Australia to do an apprenticeship or traineeship.

You should also register with your nearest Group Training Organisation as they specialise in apprenticeship employment.

Previous Qualifications

I already have a qualification. Can I still do an apprenticeship?

There are certain circumstances where someone who has completed a qualification can still do an apprenticeship but you will need to talk to your local Australian Apprenticeship Support Network provider about your particular circumstances.

I have started a qualification with a training provider, but now I want to do it as an apprenticeship. Can I do this?

In theory you can do this, but there are many factors involved and each case will be different. Contact an Australian Apprenticeship Support Network provider to check your eligibility and discuss with your training provider what your options could be.

Wages and Financial Information

Is there any financial help for me during an apprenticeship or traineeship?

There are several financial payments that may be available to apprentices or trainees to help support them through their training. Trade Support Loans and Living Away From Home Allowance are assessed and administered by Apprenticeship Network Providers. Centrelink may also provide fortnightly allowances and concessions.

Australian Apprenticeship Support Network providers can explain what might apply in your case, and can also explain whether there are any specific State and Territory allowances available to apprentices and trainees such as discounted car registration.

You can find more information about relevant Centrelink application requirements via the Centerlink Payment and Service Finder.

Do I have to pay for the training fees?

There might be an enrolment fee connected to the Australian Apprenticeship training. Who is responsible for the payment of enrolment fees and other types of fees and payments varies in different trades and industries.

Some awards stipulate that this is the responsibility of the employer, but some awards don't say who has to pay There may also be State or Territory based policies relating to fees. It's important to check employer responsibilities in this area either with a Registered Training Organisation or the Fair Work Ombudsman.

What wages will I be on?

Earning while you are learning is one of the many benefits of becoming an apprentice or trainee. Apprentices and trainees have lower pay rates than other workers and they vary between occupation and industry. It is a good idea to do your research and find out about wages, entitlements and financial support you may get to assist you on your career journey before you begin. 

Trainee wage rates may depend on your age, education level and the number of years since you left school. Apprentices wage rates are set in the award of the industry and job you are apprenticed to. Basic employment entitlements such as sick leave, overtime rates, and superannuation are set in your award for both trainees and apprentices

Your award may also state who is responsible to pay for an apprentice or trainee's training fees, and whether there are any travel, accommodation, or uniform allowance entitlements.

All the relevant information about the award you will be under, and the wages and allowances you entitled to can be found at the Fair Work Ombudsman web site.

If you can't find what you are looking for, please contact AATIS on 1800 338 022 or email your questions to contact@aatis.com.au.