Release type: Media Release


Government and Industry Partnerships to Train Workers

The Minister for Education, Julia Gillard, today announced a new partnership between the Rudd Government and industry to pilot training for the existing workforce through a series of National Enterprise Productivity Places Program trials.

The trials will begin over the next six months and will be a joint venture between the national Industry Skills Council network and large national enterprises to offer more than 1250 training places to increase the skills of existing workers.

This innovative pilot cuts across a diverse range of industry sectors to directly address chronic skills shortages affecting industry and continues the Government’s commitment to protect the Australian economy by securing jobs and strengthening productivity. (List attached below)

The Australian Government will cover up to 50 per cent of the cost for training places, providing around $3 million. The national enterprises will provide the remaining funding.

The pilot builds on the already successful implementation of the Productivity Places Program for jobseekers, which as of this week has delivered over 58 000 enrolments across Australia with 15,000 people already completed training.

Training will be provided as part of these initial trials in areas such as food and meat processing, frontline management, gas industry operations, retail operations, customer contact and aircraft maintenance.

The trials are the first of their kind and are a joint venture between the national Industry Skills Councils and enterprises to collaborate and address the skills and training needs of their workforces, providing training opportunities for their employees.

The national trials build on the projects already underway in partnership with a number of States and Territories including Western Australia, South Australia, Northern Territory, Tasmania and Queensland, focussing on identified skill shortages in these areas.

A list of national enterprise productivity places program trials is below.More information on the Productivity Places Program and these trials can be found at



Innovation and Business Skills Australia (IBSA) - St George Bank $300 000IBSA and St George Bank have worked closely together to complete a skills analysis of the enterprise and identify the areas of training required. This project will build on those findings to support over 120 staff to upgrade their skills across Certificates III and IV in customer contact.

Agrifood - Inghams $200 000Inghams is currently facing a skills shortage of process workers which has the capacity to impact adversely on the organisation. Working with the Agrifood ISC, this proposal will provide flexible training options for Ingham employees at the Certificate III level to upgrade their current skills and training.

Innovation and Business Skills Australia - Qantas $300 000IBSA and Qantas continue to work in partnership in undertaking a comprehensive training needs analysis and have found that a range of training is required across business and finance operations, airport services, cabin and flight crew, catering services and management.

This project supports those findings by providing training to existing employees to address priority skills shortage areas for Qantas and enabling employees to upgrade their skills and career pathways.

Mitsubishi $270 974A joint venture between Mitsubishi and Archer College is the establishment of Mitsubishi Diamond College which will provide flexible learning options for the 221 independent dealers that constitute the Mitsubishi Franchise network in Australia. The College will provide an integrated approach to training involving flexible delivery.

Service Skills Australia (SSA) - Woolworths $298 600Woolworths, as a long standing partner of SSA, has a clearly identified program of development and training which is mapped to career paths for their employees. This proposal will provide traineeships in Certificate III and IV in retail for up to 145 employees through their established national training delivery network.

Agrifood - Woolworths $137 000 This project will utilise the existing Woolworths development and training program to provide flexible training options to upgrade the skills and training of butchers and bakers at the Certificate III level.

Electrotechnology Industry Skills Council (EE-Oz) – Theiss Services and Origin Energy $287 000This project will upskill existing workers involved in the gas industry. This project sees these two competing organisations collaborating to address skills shortages, raise industry investment in skills and workforce development and initiate formal nationally accredited training in the gas industry.

Service Skills Australia - Westfield $150 000A joint venture between Service Skills Australia (SSA); the Australian Retail Association (ARA) and Westfield.

Westfield and the ARA have previously teamed up to launch the national retail education program, called SEED. This project will expand on this with SSA working closely with Westfield to establish an enterprise portfolio and to provide the training needs analysis. It will deliver 75 training places at the Diploma level to enable Westfield to meet their workforce development goals.

Transport and Logistics Industry Skills Council - TNT $300 000TNT, working alongside the Transport and Logistics ISC, will deliver the Diploma in Logistics for up to 60 participants to provide formal skills and training for their current employees.

Manufacturing Skills Australia (MSA) - Qantas $125 000The Qantas Engineering corporate commitment is to a highly skilled workforce and to respond to identified skill shortage areas. In order to meet this commitment, Qantas Engineering will partner with MSA to raise the level of skills across its existing aircraft maintenance workforce and offer employees the opportunity to upgrade their qualifications and to seek RPL recognising their current skills, training and experience.

Skills DMC $400 000Skills DMC will work with enterprises across civil construction, coal, metalliferous mining, drilling and quarry sectors to provide training from Certificate III to Advanced Diploma level for a range of participants.

Electrotechnology Industry Skills Council - Thiess Services $200 000Industry Skills Council EE-Oz will join up with Thiess to deliver training at the Certificate III level for up to 80 participants in ESI Distribution (Powerline) and ESI Cable Jointing. These are areas of critical skills shortage within the industry.