January 30th, 2013
Industry Training Review first outcomesCompetenz Welcomes New Apprenticeship Scheme Raising the profile of apprenticeships through the newly announced New Zealand Apprenticeship scheme is a welcome first step in increasing apprenticeship numbers and helping ease a skills shortage says John Blakey, CEO of Competenz. “An increased subsidy to support apprentices of any age and the removal of duplication within the system allows more money to be invested in the front line and will help ease the considerable burden to companies who take on a four year training commitment.” Competenz, an Industry Training Organisation, arranges training for companies within the manufacturing sector which includes mechanical engineering, baking, and butchery apprentices. “During the Review of Industry Training companies told us they wanted a simple one-size-fits-all apprenticeship scheme. It’s good policy and should genuinely add to apprenticeship numbers,” said Mr Blakey. The announcements today come at the end of a lengthy review process which investigated the role of ITOs and the support needed by companies doing on-the-job training. “We know from research Competenz has conducted that companies want more pastoral care for apprentices and more support, both of which are addressed by Minister Joyce. The combination of a financial incentive and our ability to provide front line services should go some way to easing a skills shortage by boosting apprenticeship numbers," said Mr Blakey.
Hon Steven Joyce - Media Statement New Zealand Apprenticeships to boost skills & support jobs The Government is to boost the number of people in apprenticeships by combining all apprenticeships into a single nationwide scheme and providing new financial incentives for employers and workers to take up more apprenticeships, Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment Minister Steven Joyce says. The new industry training initiatives were today announced by Prime Minister John Key in a speech to the North Harbour Club in Auckland. “There is a big opportunity over the next few years – particularly with the rebuilding of Christchurch – to train more New Zealanders in vocational careers that will set them up well for their working lives,” Mr Joyce says. “To give people the skills and qualifications they need, it is essential New Zealand has a responsive industry training system. The Government’s new package of initiatives is about increasing opportunities for in-work training for all Kiwis by expanding and improving our apprenticeship training system.” The new initiatives include:
- From 1 January 2014, we are going to combine Modern Apprenticeships and other apprenticeship-type training under an expanded and improved scheme called New Zealand Apprenticeships. These new apprenticeships will provide the same level of support, and the same level of subsidy, for all apprentices, regardless of their age. Fewer than half the people doing apprenticeship-type training are actually funded as proper apprentices, through the Modern Apprenticeship scheme, and we are going to change that.
- Boosting overall funding for apprenticeships. The current top-up for Modern Apprentices will be redistributed across all apprentices, regardless of age, as an extension to their learning subsidy. In addition, overall subsidy payments will be increased by around $12 million in the first year, rising over time. Increased funding for apprenticeships will allow industry training organisations to invest in the quality of education for apprentices, lower fees for employers and encourage growth in the uptake of apprenticeships.
- Boosting the educational content of apprenticeships. At a minimum they will require a programme of at least 120 credits that results in a level four qualification.
- Setting clearer roles and performance expectations for ITOs, and giving employers other options if their ITOs don’t perform; and
- Lifting the profile of, and participation in, apprenticeships. We are going to give the first 10,000 new apprentices who enrol after 1 April this year $1,000 towards their tools and off-job course costs, or $2,000 if they are in priority construction trades. The same amount will also be paid to their employers.
- Increasing competition by allowing employers direct access to industry training funding.