Office for the Public Sector


FAQs and useful links

Who do I contact if I have questions?

Generally, your first contact is your supervisor and then a manager or HR. Anything that they cannot help you with will be directed to the correct area, and depending on your query, the HR contact may speak with the Jobs4Youth team.

If you have an issue that you feel uncomfortable speaking to your supervisor or HR about you could approach your mentor or Employee Assistance Program (EAP) for your agency.

What is the probationary period?

You will have an employment contract under either the Public Sector Act 2009 or the Health Care Act 2008 and in addition a Contract of Training under the Training and Skills Development Act 2008.

The probationary period for the Contract of Training is gazetted for each qualification as per the Federal Training and Skills Development Act 2008. The probation period for the Certificate III in Government is one month.

If the two contracts (employment and training) were signed on separate dates when does the probation period start and end?

The 1 month probationary period under the training contract begins from the training contract commencement date, even if the training contract commences after employment does.

If, for instance, both the employment contract and training contract allowed for one month probationary periods, and you signed up a training contract to commence two weeks after employment, they would spend six weeks under probation (but only the last month would count as a probationary period for the purposes of the traineeship).

Note that in some cases you may not receive confirmation of the approval of the training contract from Traineeship and Apprenticeship Services until after the training contract probationary period has passed (this sometimes occurs where the probationary period is only one month). However, if you did wish to withdraw from a training contract during the training contract probationary period, and you hadn’t yet received confirmation that it had been approved, you can still lodge a withdrawal application with Traineeship and Apprenticeship Services during that time.

Why do I have to study?

You are employed under a Contract of Training, which is a formal arrangement for you to learn a job in an employment arrangement and work towards a nationally recognised qualification. The on-job training and experience that you are provided will complement the formal off-job training that you are undertaking.

You are undertaking study that has been designed to introduce you to working in the public sector and it’s a crucial part of your development.

When will I start training?

You will start training after the conclusion of the probation period for your Contract of Training. The training is conducted in groups so the training organisation will also need to have a full group before they can schedule your first day.

You will be contacted by the training provider directly about this.

Who can I contact if I’m not getting the required training times?

Speak to your manager or HR and if the problem is not resolved contact the RTO and then Jobs4Youth  team.

Who pays for the travel costs for me to attend training?

The Office for the Public Sector will reimburse all reasonable travel, accommodation and meal costs in line with the Commissioner’s Determination 3.2 Employment Conditions – Remuneration – Allowances and Reimbursements.

This will be managed by your supervisor.

What is the difference between my mentor and my supervisor?

Mentors are experienced employees from across State Government who provide you with guidance and support. This may include assistance to achieve goals you’ve set and to untangle the complexities and challenges you face as a public servant.

It is expected that you will attend 10 to 12 small group mentoring sessions over the course of your 12 month employment.
Supervisors hold a position of authority over trainees  that mentors do not have. This encourages the development of a trusting relationship and may allow you to be more honest about the issues that you are facing. Mentors can then offer advice to assist you to develop strategies to solve these issues.

What jobs can I do in the workplace?

You should receive a job description and access to information about the work associated with your classification. If you are asked to undertake higher duties you should speak to your supervisor and HR about the implications of this on your Contract of Training and salary.

How do I get my certificate or parchment?

Your certificate is issued by your training organisation. Once you have completed your study you will receive, at minimum, a letter stating that you have completed your qualification. There will be a graduation ceremony to celebrate the conclusion of the program and some training organisations will choose to present your certificate at this time.

How is my traineeship completed?

The Australian Apprenticeship Centre will send you information about the Completion application form, which must be filled in and sent to Traineeship and Apprenticeship Services.

Will I get ongoing employment?

Trainees who have successfully met set criteria may be offered an ongoing entry-level role (ASO1 or equivalent) in a public sector agency.  This is not guaranteed. Agencies are obliged to offer a minimum of half their new recruits ongoing employment status near to, or at the completion of their traineeship if trainees meet the criteria. The criteria includes successful completion of your Certificate training and satisfactory performance appraisals. Decisions regarding ongoing placements will be at the discretion of your agency.

Can I apply for other jobs?

As an employee of State Government you have access to all internally and externally advertised positions via Jobs SA but we suggest speaking to your supervisor first about your situation and future.

The end date for my contract is coming up soon, what do I need to do?

You should make sure that your training is up to date and that you will complete all assessments by  your contract end date. You should then speak to your supervisor and agency HR.


  • Take notes and ask questions
  • Make lists of what tasks you need to complete
  • Use your study group as a network not just for the assessments but also for the whole traineeship experience
  • Make sure you have the correct contact details for your supervisor so you can advise them if you are running late or are unwell for work.
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