Queensland apprentices given a boost-2
Companies have a new set of incentives for hiring apprentices in Queensland, giving an opportunity to hire the next generation of tradies.

Apprenticeships are the life-blood of all Australian trade industries – they give new workers the skills they need to get their foot in the door and start a career in a range of different areas.

However, finishing an apprenticeship is something that many people struggle with. Roughly half of all Australians who start an apprenticeship aren’t completing their qualification according to the National Centre for Vocational Education and Research.

This adds up to a lot of wasted potential, especially for industries like the electrical sector, which are seeing a pretty bad skills shortage at the moment.

To help overcome this hurdle, the Queensland government has launched a pledge programme where companies looking to hire an apprentice can state their support through a website.

Companies that complete the pledge can then receive a $6,000 payment once the places have been filled with new workers – money sourced from a $36 million package designed to improve apprenticeship outcomes.

Of course, there is no such thing as a free lunch, and companies will need to complete an eligibility test before taking on an apprentice. New hires will also need to be on top of a company’s existing apprenticeship programme – making this an incentive for companies that go above and beyond their usual hiring.

That said, this programme is also available for organisations that don’t have any apprentices on their books, provided they are prepared to start hiring new workers.

Currently, over 2,000 apprentice places have been pledged by companies across the state, meaning that over a third of the places in this programme have now been filled. The cut-off date for apprentices is the 30th of June 2015, giving unsure employers plenty of time to decide if this is the right choice for them.

If this initiative proves successful, it will certainly show how committed the trades sector is to training the next generation of workers in these industries.

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