AIS Newsletter October 2020


CEO Update

AIS is committed to remaining responsive and innovative to skills development that supports a mobile and productive workforce. Industry Reference Committees (IRCs) supported by AIS are working to rapidly develop Training Packages and skills sets that address the current and future skills needs of industry.


I am pleased to inform you that the Skills Ministers endorsed the latest releases of the Maritime, Transport and Logistics (Rail), Defence and Electrotechnology Training Packages, which incorporate new work practices and technologies and streamline training and career pathways for each industry’s workforce. Thanks to the great work of the IRCs and subject matter experts on the Technical Advisory Committees, and to all stakeholders who provided valuable feedback.


The handing down of the federal budget last week highlighted that creating jobs and boosting the skills of Australians to help them get back into work is at the heart of the Government’s Economic Recovery Plan for Australia. This follows the recent $1.5 billion JobBuilder package announcement.


To get more people the skills they need and to support job seekers back into work, the government is investing an additional $1.2 billion through the Boosting Apprenticeship Commencements wage subsidy to support up to 100,000 new apprentices and trainees across Australia. The Minister for Employment, Skills, Small and Family Business, Senator Michaelia Cash has confirmed that existing workers will be included in this scheme to support upskilling and reskilling.


The budget papers also focus on building skills and capability through key activities and delivery strategies to enhance the quality of vocational education and training. This includes continued support of the Australian Industry and Skills Committee and its network of IRCs to design industry-relevant training products and to work with states and territories to streamline and simplify existing national qualifications.


Earlier in the year, the government committed $500 million for the JobTrainer initiative that will provide, from this month, a mix of short courses and qualifications for school leavers and job seekers. This funding was reaffirmed in the budget and, with a matching contribution from state and territory governments, will help around 300,000 Australians on the path to a new job or further training.


Another significant commitment in the budget is the funding of the National Careers Institute. This investment looks to simplify and strengthen career information, promote VET pathways, and enhance partnerships between industry, employers, schools, and tertiary providers. My congratulations to Adam Boyton on his formal appointment to the role of National Skills Commissioner. We look forward to working with Mr Boyton on the important work of identifying and addressing Australia’s future skills needs.


We recently launched our new AIS Website. We have improved its functionality and navigation, as well as creating a refreshing new look and feel. The website was designed with you, our stakeholders, front of mind. It provides a good resource for the National Training System as well as information about your industries, how you can engage with the work of the IRCs and keep up to date with the progress of projects that affect your sector. I encourage you to take a look and view the video we prepared on our how we support workforce needs. We welcome your feedback on our new site.


Robert Adams, CEO



Training Package endorsements

Skills Ministers have endorsed the latest releases of the Maritime, Transport and Logistics (Rail), Defence and Electrotechnology Training Packages.  Qualifications contained in these packages have been reviewed and developed to align to changing work practices, new technologies and regulatory requirements.


The IRCs would like to extend a note of thanks to all the industry subject matter experts who made up the technical advisory committees attached to these projects. Keep an eye on our new website for updates on the following projects.


Electrotechnology Training Package Release 2.0


Endorsement of the UEE Electrotechnology Training Package completes work transitioning 79 qualifications, 50 Skill Sets and 530 Units of Competency to align with the Standards for Training Packages 2012. The project also included: the review and development of critical content related to the 55 Essential Performance Capabilities for Electrician Licensing; redevelopment of ‘hazardous area’ units to better align to the current AS/NZS Standard; and development of new Handling of A2 Refrigerants units to reflect industry and regulatory skill and knowledge requirements.


In approving it for endorsement the Australian Industry and Skills Committee noted how critical the Training Package is not only in terms of the number of enrolments, but also its significance to the economy as it shifts towards economic recovery post the COVID‑19 pandemic.


Transport and Logistics (Rail) Training Package Release 7.0


The revised Training Package addresses new technologies and skill requirements of Network Control, Passenger Train Guard & Network Fault Support operators.


The Certificate IV in Rail Network Control and the Certificate IV in Tram/Light Rail Control qualifications have been amalgamated into a single qualification for network controllers, adding to workforce mobility across rail and light rail sectors. The Certificate III Passenger Train Guard Qualification now caters for train guards operating on either diesel or electric trains.


New Skill Sets and two Units of Competency have been created to better equip remote first line responders to quickly remedy conventional network faults and system breakdowns, and to provide remote respondents the skills and knowledge to remedy unconventional network faults and system breakdowns related to rail vehicles. This will help reduce fault times, less network congestion and delays, providing time benefits to rail commuters and financial savings to rail operators.

Maritime Training Package Release 6.0


Qualifications for Masters and Engineers have been streamlined and a new career pathway for Electro-Technical Officer developed to meet skills needs identified by the industry and regulator. This now gives Australian seafarers the opportunity to take up these positions in the maritime industry.


New Skill Sets and Units of Competency were developed to meet specialised regulatory requirements concerning operations of chemical, liquefied gas and oil tankers, vessels operating in polar waters, gas and low flashpoint fuel vessels and ship security.


Skills standards have been revised to align with STCW (Standards of Training Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers), Marine Orders and NSCV (National Standards for Commercial Vessels). This provides seafarers with the opportunity to achieve AMSA certification and pursue career pathways across industry sectors.  This also provides opportunities for Australian RTO’s to deliver to international students.


Defence Training Package Release 3.0 


The Training Package aligns with Defence capability and Commonwealth legislative and regulatory requirements.


Qualifications and Skill Sets contained in the Training Package provide effective pathways for individuals moving between jobs and occupational roles of the same nature across the Australian Defence Force, as well as wider Defence personnel and service suppliers.


Overall, 18 qualifications and 121 Units of Competency covering Defence Sensor Operations, Range Control, Chaplaincy, Military Justice and Explosive Ordinance have been updated.


Six new Skill Sets related to Explosive Ordinance roles were developed to support specific capabilities in Defence around Dangerous Goods, Facilities, Engineering, Supervision and Explosive Ordinance Management. The Certificate IV in Range Control and DEF33115 Certificate III in Sensor Operations were deleted as they are no longer required or delivered.


Getting future ready - Tomorrow's supply chain skills today

The bushfires that ravaged so many parts of Australia last summer brought into sharp focus how integral supply chains are to our lives. The crisis caused highway closures, production stoppages, power outages, flight cancellations and delays, revealing what we normally take for granted: an invisible and seamless network of planning, coordination and delivery.


Contemporary supply chains are about much more than warehouses and freight. From the moment we wake and put lights on, turn on the taps, get dressed, buy a coffee and travel to work, domestic, and often international, supply chains streamline each transaction. Dynamic systems move people, goods and data.


As supply chains evolve in their sophistication and use of digital technologies, it’s become clear employers are looking for new skills and that those skills are often common across multiple industries. In direct response, the Australian Industry and Skills Committee (AISC) commissioned the development of ten nationally endorsed cross sector supply chain Skill Sets and sixteen Units of Competency to be delivered by Australia’s national vocational education and training system.


The project was overseen by the Transport and Logistics Industry Reference Committee, and led by a project reference group of representatives from key industries. Technical expertise and project management was provided by AIS.


‘I encourage employers to spread the word that a career in supply chains offers lots of great prospects for digitally savvy people to work with the latest technology and collaborate with partners across the entire spectrum of business.’ Mark McKenzie, Chair of the Cross Sector Supply Chain Skills Project Reference Group


To ensure high quality delivery and assessment of the new cross sectoral skills, AIS has produced a compendium of guidance for Registered Training Organisations on how to contextualise these skills for different industries.


Visit the Supply Chain Skills and Careers Hub to find out more about this project and view the Skill Sets, Units of Competency and the compendium.


Read the full ‘Getting future ready – Tomorrow’s supply chain skills today’ article.


Supporting the work of RTOs

AIS is proud to develop Training Packages on behalf of 11 key industries and we acknowledge that Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) are the front line of the VET system as providers and assessors of nationally recognised training and qualifications. Employers rely on RTOs to provide essential skills and knowledge to both new entrants and existing workers.


It is therefore important that our RTOs receive quality Professional Development. AIS Global, the business arm of AIS, was recently successful in being listed as a provider for the South Australian Government to provide a range of training opportunities for RTOs.  These include: Learning theory, design, facilitation and evaluation; assessment theory and practice; mental health and resilience, online facilitation; change and project management.


'Your Career' website launched

The National Careers Institute has launched Your Career’, its new one-stop career information website.
The site contains a wide range of information to help people of all ages plan, navigate and manage their careers.

Key features include:

  • career quizzes to explore jobs that match a person’s profile
  • information about study or training options to help people upskill or reskill
  • tips on successful job search, including resumé writing
  • an A to Z of occupations, including detailed career descriptions, average pay and outlook
  • links to support services


For young people finishing school in 2020, the website also features a School Leavers Information Kit – Your Career: What’s next for you? – providing young people with tailored information about education, training and work options as they navigate the changing labour market.


A School Leavers Information Service is also available for assistance in using the kit and the Your Career website, or to access further careers support, where needed.