Making apprenticeships more accessible and affordable will ensure NSW builds capacity and with it the workforce of the future, according to the State’s peak business organisation, the NSW Business Chamber.
The Premier has announced that the State Budget will feature a package that provides for a very large number of free apprenticeships over the next four years across a range of skill specifications.
“This is an important announcement – not just for those looking at starting an apprenticeship, but for business owners across the State who are keen to take on more staff,” said Kellon Beard Regional Manager, Mid North Coast NSW Business Chamber.
“From July, apprentices can undertake their training free of charge, and there’s no requirement for them to have to fork out for an upfront fee, nor for their employer to reimburse them for their studies,” Mr Beard said.
“The Government has made it as easy as possible for students to take up this offer, it won’t be limited simply to TAFE, but also offered through other Registered Training Organisations (RTO’s).
“NSW is in the middle of an unprecedented infrastructure boom, but sadly there are gaps between the skills our young people possess and those needed to take on these jobs.
“This skills gap is especially prevalent in regional NSW where our quarterly Business Conditions Surveys tell us that the number two issue for business owners behind rising energy costs is the inability to find workers with the skills needed for the vacant jobs that they have.
“Given apprenticeships have a higher employment success rate than university degrees, this is further good news for apprentices entering the workforce, with trades leading the top 10 occupations in demand for our future workforce.
“Getting young Australians into an apprenticeship and building a quality workforce is fundamental to future economic and social prosperity, and a mission that the business community in NSW will support to help close the skills shortage gap,” Mr Beard said.