When hiring an apprentice, you have certain responsibilities and obligations.
You will enter into a training contract, which is a legally binding agreement to work and train together until your apprentice has completed their training and you both agree they are competent in the skills required for their trade or vocation.
Once signed, your Australian Apprenticeship Support Network Provider will need to submit a copy of your training contract to us within 28 days.
As an employer, you will be required to:
- provide employment and training for the term of the contract
- provide your apprentice with appropriate supervision at all times
- release your apprentice and pay them while they undertake relevant training and assessment
- comply with the wages and conditions in the relevant industrial award or agreement
- comply with other relevant legislation such as the Work Health and Safety Act 2012.
Pay and conditions for apprentices
Wages and conditions for apprentices are set out in the Awards that are maintained and reviewed by the Australian Fair Work Commission. Alternatively, some apprentices may be covered by an enterprise agreement.
Apprentices are entitled to the same conditions of employment as all other employees working in similar occupations, including:
- worker's compensation
- leave entitlements
- protection under anti-discrimination and occupational, health and safety laws.
The Fair Work Ombudsman can help you with information about awards and agreements, workplace rights and obligations, and more.
More information about your responsibilities
Apprentices need to train under the supervision of qualified and experienced workers.
Supervision requirements have recently been updated, under the new South Australian Skills Standards.
Some apprentices or trainees need more supervision than others. To make sure that all apprentices or trainees are adequately supervised, employers must not exceed the supervision ratios that apply to them.
Each apprenticeship and traineeship has been assessed as either high, medium or low risk for supervision. The ratios are published in the Traineeship and Apprenticeship Pathways (TAP) Schedule.
- Traineeship and Apprenticeship Pathways Schedule PDF
- Traineeship and Apprenticeship Pathways Schedule XLSX
See the fact sheet on the new Supervision Standard, for more information.
In most cases as an employer, you provide on-the-job training to your apprentices and the Nominated Training Organisation (NTO) provides off-the-job training. To ensure your business is ready to give apprentices relevant on-the-job training, we need to check it has:
- appropriate facilities, equipment and experienced supervisors to support training and supervision of apprentices in line with the training plan
- relevant work appropriate to the vocation and to the successful completion of the qualification in the training contract.
Employers will need to release apprentices and trainees to attend off job training, paying their wage while they’re training, and their training fees.
If you want more detail, the SA Skills Commission has produced a series of Standards. For more information, visit the Skills Commission website.
You can also refer to the Fair Work Ombudsman website for more information and help with hiring and managing apprentices and trainees.