Construct You Blog

Considering an apprenticeship in Victoria? Everything you need to know

Elis Hoxha

30/10/2017

Apprenticeships are a flexible way to receive hands on work experience and nationally recognised training in a specific industry.

 

In Victoria, there are more than 74,000 people currently employed as apprentices in a variety of industries. Apprenticeships are available to all ages, and no prior experience in the trade or industry is necessary.

Why would I consider an apprenticeship?

There are many benefits to being employed as an apprentice:

·       You get to learn a trade with work-based training and get a nationally recognised qualification through TAFE.

·       You get paid whilst learning.

·       You may be eligible for a number of financial incentives as an apprentice.

What awards and benefits do I get as an apprentice?

Discounted car registration

Trade apprentices in Victoria may be eligible for 50% discounted annual car registration if you use your car for work purposes. More information can be found here.

Trade support loans

Apprentices have access to Trade Support Loans, which total up to $20,000 over the course of an apprenticeship. These loans are to help with the costs of undertaking an apprenticeship and living on apprenticeship salaries. These loans are paid monthly and start at $8000 for the first year. The monthly loan amount decreases slightly from year to year in line with apprenticeship salary rate increases, and is available for a maximum of four years.

 

Trade support loans are interest free and repayable when the apprenticeship is completed, and when you are earning more than the income repayment threshold (currently $55,874 2017-2018).

 

Trade support loans are optional but may provide necessary financial help depending on your personal circumstances.

 

A major benefit of a trade support loan is that if you complete your apprenticeship, you only have to pay back 80% of the amount borrowed!

Living away from home allowance

Apprentices who have to move away from parental or guardian home for the first time to commence their apprenticeship may be entitled to a living away from home allowance.

 

This starts at a rate of $77.17 per week for the first 12 months, $38.59 for the second year, and $25 for the third year. This is available to full and part time apprentices.

Centrelink benefits for apprentices

Centrelink offers benefits such as Youth Allowance, Austudy and Abstudy, for apprentices depending on your age and eligibility. You can contact the Department of Human Services for more information.

Discounted health care and travel

Apprentices may be entitled to a range of discounted health care and travel benefits.

 

For a full list and to find out where to get more information on incentives for apprentices in Australia refer to this fact sheet.

What can I expect to be paid as an apprentice?

Apprenticeship salaries are based on the award rates for the individual trade, information on awards can be found here.

 

For examples, an apprentice in the construction industry will be paid an hourly rate which varies depending on the year of apprenticeship they are in, the age of the apprentice and if all units of competency being passed at TAFE. In Victoria the current rates for apprentices in the building and construction industry are as follows:

Apprentice Rates under 25

1st Year

2nd Year

3rd Year

4th Year

$ Per Hour

$ Per Week

$ Per Hour

$ Per Week

$ Per Hour

$ Per Week

$ Per Hour

$ Per Week

From 1 March 2014 - Base Rate

14.55

523.64

14.57

524.43

21.89

788.07

26.77

963.77

TAFE Allowance

225.00

225.00

225.00

Total Rate if all modules passed

14.55

523.64

20.82

749.43

28.14

1013.07

33.02

1188.77

 

 

Adult Apprentice Rates (Over 25 years of age)

1st Year

2nd Year

3rd Year

4th Year

$ Per Hour

$ Per Week

$ Per Hour

$ Per Week

$ Per Hour

$ Per Week

$ Per Hour

$ Per Week

From 1 March 2014 - Base Rate

18.57

668.53

21.89

788.07

26.77

963.77

27.99

1007.65

TAFE Allowance

225.00

225.00

225.00

Total Rate if all modules passed

18.57

668.53

28.14

1012.07

33.02

1188.77

34.24

1232.65

 

*Sourced ETU Victoria

How do I find an apprenticeship?

First you need to consider what trade or industry you want to work in. You can then talk to local businesses in this industry and ask them if they are considering employing an apprentice or find out how they would recruit for one if they were.

 

Employers will likely advertise their apprenticeship openings on online job sites, or through specific recruitment sites such as ConstructYou so make sure you are registered with us to search and to stay up to date with any opportunities.


References:

https://www.australianapprenticeships.gov.au/employer-incentives

https://www.australianapprenticeships.gov.au/employers

https://www.business.gov.au/info/run/employ-people/apprentices-and-trainees