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Building Australia’s Future Workforce: Industry and Government Partnership

Posted: 3/07/2012 5:00:00 AM by Kyla Jones, Site Director, Mining Oil and Gas Jobs
Filed under: Training-and-Development, Job-seekers

New measures to improve training and workforce participation came into effect at the beginning of this month as part of the $3 billion Building Australia’s Future Workforce (BAFW) package. A significant part of this initiative is focused on upskilling the current Australian workforce and getting people into good jobs.

According the Australian Government, BAFW consists of four main areas:
  • Putting industry at the heart of the training system
  • Skills to support increased participation
  • Modernising apprenticeships
  • Reforming the national training system
The BAFW goal is to deliver skilled workers the economy needs and ensure more Australians have the opportunity to share in the nation’s prosperity. This is on top of funding of more than $2 billion over the next four years for Australia’s university sector.

Skills and training

Over the next three years, the government has committed about $854 million to a new National Partnership Agreement (NPA) on Skills Reform. The NPA was signed by Julia Gillard and each of the states in territories in Australia. The goal is to reform the Vocational Education and Training (VET) system, in part, to enable all working age Australians to develop skills and qualifications they need to participate in the Australian workforce.

A new agency will be established – the Australian Workforce and Productivity Agency – specifically to work with industry to determine what skills are most needed and what areas of the country are in short supply. This new agency will work closely with the industry-led National Workforce Development Fund.

Youth and early school leavers

Another measure of the BAFW involves increasing the earnings threshold for Youth Allowances for part-time students and Australian apprentices. The income free area has been increased to $143 a fortnight, up from $62, meaning earnings can more than double before it affects income support payments.

In addition, qualified Early School Leavers will have access to a $500 Employment Pathway Fund credit allowing them access to employment assistance and education tailored specifically to the individual.

Additional assistance

People with disabilities and jobseekers who have been unemployed for a very long time are also eligible for a variety of assistance programs and credits to help them overcome barriers to gainful employment.

What this means for the jobseeker

Industry and government are working together to upskill, train and retrain the Australian worker. Whether you are unemployed, under employed or want to receive additional training, there has never been a better time to improve your chances to participate in the Australian labour market.

As much of the current labour demand in Australia is centred around the resources industry, jobseekers looking to break into a mining job, start an oil career, or find an offshore job are going to be beneficiaries of the new measures that came into effect this week as part of the BAFW.

More training and development advice

Our Careers and Industry Guide has a comprehensive section on Training and Development. It’s filled with valuable information developed especially for people wanting to get training or upskill and retrain for employment in the Australian resources industry.

What do you think about these new changes?

  • Don’t forget to subscribe to our blog. We’re publishing new information every day about employment in the Australian resource industry.
  • If you’re looking for a job in mining, energy or oil and gas, make sure you visit our industry jobs board where we only advertise real jobs by real employers.

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