In the Workplace

Awards, pay and conditions

Each apprenticeship/traineeship is covered by a federal training agreement. Australian Apprenticeships Centres can provide information about terms and conditions of employment and other entitlements such as sick leave, holiday pay, meal breaks, WorkCover, superannuation, as well as training, assessment and supervision.

Fair Work Australia can provide information on the legal requirements of how much an employee should be paid.

Refer also to Financial incentives, assistance and concessions section on the Money matters web page for details on other forms of support that you may be eligible for.

Trade unions

A trade union is a registered organisation for employees to act as a group to improve or maintain their terms and conditions of employment. Trade unions can advise on issues in the workplace, such as conditions, training, bullying and harassment, wages and entitlements. All employees are eligible to join a union. For information contact the Victorian Trades Hall Council.

Withdrawal time from routine work to participate in work-based training and assessment

Your employer needs to ensure you have sufficient time at work dedicated to developing your competencies.

Withdrawal time from routine work for structured training and learning activities is necessary if your off-the-job training does not incorporate all of the competencies within the qualification.

  • At certificate III level and above, a minimum of three hours per week, averaged over a four week cycle (pro rata for part-time trainees and only for the duration of competencies delivered and assessed in the workplace)
  • At certificate I and II levels, a minimum of one and half hours per week, averaged over an eight week cycle (pro rata for part-time trainees and only for the duration of competencies delivered and assessed in the workplace).

Your first block of training at RMIT can account for up to 40 hours of the annual withdrawn time if your block training is within the first three months of training. This applies to all certificate program levels. This training should focus on compliance and regulatory units and generic skills.

If your employer/supervisor is not allowing you to withdraw from routine work for the minimum specified time, please notify your trainer at RMIT, and RMIT will approach the employer to resolve the issue. If there is no resolution, RMIT must report the non-compliance to the Apprenticeship Administration Unit.

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Employment changes

Changing or leaving employers

If you change or leave your employer, you must inform your RMIT trainers as soon as possible.

You must also seek advice from the Australian Apprenticeships Centre on the correct processes.

It is also important to inform your RMIT school of a new employer.

If you leave your job

If you leave your job to stop training, you must inform your RMIT trainers as soon as possible. If you are no longer continuing training it is important to cancel your enrolment. Depending on the amount of training you have received you may be eligible for a refund of fees.

If your enrolment is not cancelled by the relevant census date you or your former employer (if you are a sponsored student) may be liable for the full year’s fee, even if you are no longer attending classes. For a list of census dates go to the TAFE census dates web page.

If you lose your job

If your circumstances change and you become unemployed or need to change jobs, you must inform RMIT of your situation as soon as possible.

Sometimes things don’t work out and you may need to look for a position elsewhere to finish your training and graduate. You will need to contact the Apprenticeship Administration Unit to cancel your current training agreement with your employer.

If you become unemployed before completing the qualification named on the training agreement, RMIT will continue the structured training.

An apprentice may continue to receive training toward the qualification named on the training agreement, subject to tuition fees being paid, until completion of the qualification.

A trainee may continue to receive training towards the qualification named on the training agreement for three months, or to the end of the enrolment period for which the trainee’s tuition fees have been paid, whichever is greater.

If you successfully complete the structured training while unemployed, the qualification can be issued but the words ‘obtained under an approved apprenticeship (or traineeship) training scheme’ will be omitted from the certificate.

If you lose your job, you may be eligible for an allowance to help complete your off-the-job training.

To apply, contact an Australian Apprenticeships Centre.

If you disagree with your employer about losing your job, you can receive advice and support from the relevant trade union, Jobwatch and apprenticeship field officers via the Apprenticeship Administration Information Line. You should seek advice from your apprenticeship field officer prior to signing a cancellation or suspension of an agreement.

Finding a new employer

To find a new employer, you can do the following.

  • Visit the Need an Apprentice website.
  • Approach employers directly and express interest in an apprenticeship or traineeship.
  • Register as a jobseeker at any number of employment agencies. These may include government funded agencies (Job Network members) or private recruitment agencies. To find employment agencies, search in the Yellow Pages under ‘employment services’.
  • Check the jobs and careers sections in newspapers and online.
  • Ask at an Australian Apprenticeships Centre.
  • Search the JobSearch national jobs database
  • Approach group training organisations (GTOs) via the Group Training Association of Victoria.
  • Contact RMIT’s careers and employment unit for job search resources and advice.
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Visits to your workplace by RMIT trainers

Some training may occur in the workplace, some may occur at RMIT and some may occur online. Your training plan will list the competencies that you will gain at work, with your employer. Your trainers from RMIT will also visit you at work to ensure that you are developing the workplace skills (competencies) that you need.

Where the training and assessment is not held at RMIT, RMIT will provide an induction visit to your workplace. The induction visit will occur before training begins to meet with you and your workplace supervisor to:

  • outline the supervisor’s responsibilities
  • outline the purpose of face-to-face visits
  • outline the key features of the training plan
  • sign off the training plan with you and your supervisor/employer.

Four further face-to-face visits per training year will be conducted (where 100% of training is off-campus). If some of your training is held at RMIT you will receive fewer visits.

During these visits, RMIT’s training staff will:

  • check that the withdrawal from normal work duties for structured training and learning activities is being provided if applicable
  • meet with you away from your direct work environment to discuss progress in completing your training plan
  • deliver training consistent with the delivery strategy and in accordance with the training plan
  • document the training provided in reference to the competencies.

You and your employer or workplace supervisor will be required to sign to verify that the visit has occurred.

The minimum number of visits depends on whether you are a part-time or full-time worker and is determined on a pro rata basis for part-time traineeships/apprenticeships. It also depends on how much of the approved training plan is carried out at work.

The number of visits is as follows:

  • one visit if 25% or less of the qualification is off-campus (at the workplace or online)
  • two visits if 25–50% of the qualification is off-campus (at the workplace or online)
  • three visits if 50–75% of the qualification is off-campus (at the workplace or online) and
  • four visits if more than 75% of the qualification is off-campus (at the workplace or online).
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Staying in contact

RMIT will maintain regular contact with both you and your workplace supervisor to:

  • monitor the progress of training against the training plan
  • monitor and document the training/learning activities undertaken during the withdrawal time for the previous month
  • record the dates and time periods logged as withdrawal time in the previous month
  • ensure you are allowed the minimum withdrawal time from routine duties.

Remember, as part of your student responsibilities, you are required to:

  • maintain correct personal details (including your telephone and mailing address) with RMIT at all times
  • log in to myRMIT at least twice a week to check your RMIT student email account and important announcements.

Failure to check your RMIT email account will not be grounds for a complaint or reversal of an administrative decision.

Refer to the Rights and responsibilities web page for full details of your responsibilities.

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