Office for the Public Sector

People

FAQs

What induction should I provide to my trainee/graduate?

An induction in to your agency, in line with its requirements and a local induction.

Why do we have to pay a fee for Jobs4Youth? When do I have to pay it?

The fee includes the training and program management costs (such as recruitment, graduation and Jobs4Youth staff) through Agencies. Invoices will be forwarded in accordance with communication to your Chief Executive.

Do I have to provide ongoing employment?

From 2015 a minimum of 50% of your agency’s allocation is to be offered ongoing employment*. An ASO1/ASO2 (or equivalent) role is to be held for the trainee/graduate in your workforce plan. Each agency will be responsible for identifying suitable roles and selecting which trainees and graduates are to be provided with role at the end of their contract.

It is recommended that to maintain consistency across government that all trainees be placed into an ASO1 role but may then be reclassified as an agency determines.

How will I be kept updated? Who do I contact if I have questions?

Your agency HR representative is the key contact person between the Office for the Public Sector, the decision makers in your area and you as a supervisor. Your HR representative will contact you and provide you with support, including any questions you may have about the traineeship requirements, how your trainee is going and any other employment queries you may have.

What is the role of my agency HR function in relation to the Jobs4Youth program?

Each agency’s HR function liaises with the Jobs4Youth team about vacancies, candidates, appointed applicants and progress. They also provide support and advice directly to supervisors about performance management and ongoing positions.

What is the role of the Office for the Public Sector?

The Office for the Public Sector is responsible for managing the Jobs4Youth program across Government, including policy development, contract management and agency HR support, e.g liaising with the Registered Training Organisations and Maxima.

What is the probationary period?

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

The probationary period for the Training Contract 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.

For graduates, the successful completion of a probationary period of one month is reasonable in the context of a 12 month engagement.

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

The one 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 a Training Contract that commenced 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 1 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.

What do I do and who do I contact to terminate a trainee’s employment?

An agency seeking to terminate a trainee must be able to demonstrate, through their HR function to the Jobs4Youth team, that the process of performance management has been followed and that this is the last possible alternative. You should liaise with your agency representative for assistance with performance issues and keep the Jobs4Youth team informed along the way.

Either the trainee or the employer should contact Traineeship and Apprenticeship Services if they are looking for more information about the termination process or if either party doesn’t agree to the termination.

A Training Contract may only be terminated when Traineeship and Apprenticeship Services approves a termination application (under delegation from the Training and Skills Commission), or by order of the South Australian Industrial Relations Commission. An employer cannot purport to ‘dismiss’ a trainee.

To terminate the trainee a termination application form must be completed and sent to Traineeship and Apprenticeship Services, Department for State Development. This must be signed by the trainee and employer. A copy should be sent to the Jobs4Youth team with an explanation of the steps that led to the termination.

What do I do and who do I contact to terminate a graduate’s employment?

Graduates are not employed through a Contract of Training. An agency seeking to terminate a graduate must be able to demonstrate that the process of performance management has been followed and that this is the last possible alternative. You should liaise with your agency HR function for assistance with performance issues and keep the Jobs4Youth team informed along the way.

Your agency HR team will be able to assist you with the process for termination and a copy of any decision (e.g. letter of advice) should be sent to the Jobs4Youth team with an explanation of the steps that led to the termination.

Why do the trainees and graduates have to study?

Trainees are employed under a Contract of Training, which is a legal contract requiring participants to undertake both study and on the job training. Under a Contract of Training participants are required to undertake both on-the-job and off-the-job training.

The qualification requirement of the program for both trainees and graduates s designed to complement the workplace training and is a crucial part of skill and employability development.

Trainees and graduates will be required to attend scheduled training with TAFE SA and undertake workplace based assessments as part of their qualification.

Where do I get assistance for Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander employees?

The Aboriginal Program Unit within the Department of State Development may be able to provide assistance and/or referral points for Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander employees. The Aboriginal Programs Unit are contactable via 1800 627 849.

You can also seek support from the cultural contact within you agency, if applicable.

Where do I get assistance for Commonwealth Government entitlements, such as Living Away from Home Allowance?

The Australian Apprenticeship Centre MEGT can provide you with information about Commonwealth Government entitlements, such as contract incentives, Living Away from Home Allowance, Disabled Australian Apprentice Wage Support, and more.

What are Vocational Training and Employment Centres and where do I get assistance?

Vocational Training and Employment Centres connect Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander job seekers with guaranteed jobs and bring together the support services necessary to prepare job seekers for long term employment.

Maxima is the only Vocational Training and Employment Centre in South Australia and the Department of Premier and Cabinet has committed to at least 25 Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander positions through the Jobs4Youth program.

If you have an Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander trainee or graduate then Maxima can provide them with additional support through this arrangement.

What is mentoring and how is this different from my role as the supervisor?

Mentors are experienced employees from across State Government who provide trainees and graduates (mentees) with guidance and support. This may include assistance to achieve goals set by the trainee and graduate and to untangle complexities and challenges faced by being a public servant.

It is expected that trainees and graduates attend 10 to 12 small group mentoring sessions over the course of their 12 month employment.
Supervisors hold a position of authority over trainees and graduates that mentors do not have. This encourages the development of a trusting relationship and may allow mentees to be more honest about the issues that they are facing. Mentors can then offer advice to assist mentees to develop strategies to solve these issues, which may include strategies to communicate with their supervisor or referral to Employee Assistance Programs.

Who pays for the travel costs for my regional trainee/graduate 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.

Each Department is responsible for the booking and payment of the trainee’s travel. The trainee must pay for their own meals.
Each Department is to then invoice the Office for the Public Sector and supply copies of the receipts/invoices for the expenses occurred. Invoices should be emailed to [email protected].

It may also be beneficial to point out the following clause to your trainee or graduate: An employee who is a private member of a frequent flyer or other benefit scheme, is not entitled to accrue personal benefits through this membership as a consequence of undertaking government related business (refer to the Code of Ethics for the South Australian Public Sector).

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

You should make sure that your trainee/graduate is up to date with all of their training and will complete all assessments by their end date. You should then speak to your agency HR and your trainee/graduate.

What happens if my trainee has not finished their training by their training contract end date?

You can apply for an extension of the training contract for up to six months using the appropriate Traineeship and Apprenticeship Services form. You will also need to consult with your agency HR to ensure that the trainee has a current employment contract for this time.

What happens if my graduate has not finished their training by their employment contract end date?

You will need to consult with your agency HR to determine the best course of action.

What is a Training Contract suspension and when is it used?

The suspension of a training contract effectively pauses the contract and moves the end date forward by the length of the period of suspension.

A suspension may be granted, for example, when a trainee has been unwell or experiencing personal issues that prevent them from undertaking work, where they have no personal leave entitlements to use or is undertaking higher duties beyond what is expected of a trainee.

Applications for suspension are assessed on a case-by-case basis. There is no set limit for the period a training contract can be suspended, unless the suspension is for business reasons (in which case the limit is 30 days at a time). Training contracts can only be suspended for up to 7 working days if the suspension is for wilful and/or serious misconduct, before the SA Industrial Relations Commission holds a conciliation conference.

There are no timeframes around the submission of suspension paperwork unless the employer is seeking to suspend their apprentice/trainee for serious and/or wilful misconduct, in which case the SA Industrial Relations Commission must be notified immediately, followed by a confirmation in writing within 3 days.

In what circumstances can a Training Contract be extended?

Extensions are granted on case-by-case basis and an application must be received by TAS with all parties’ signatures on or before the nominal completion date.

The parties need to understand that, as they are applying to extend the term of the training contract, it therefore extends the period for which they have obligations under that training contract, and that the apprentice/trainee will continue to be paid at or above the minimum rate of an apprentice/trainee as stipulated in their industrial agreement or award.

Examples include:

    • The apprentice/trainee has experienced personal problems, such as a terminal illness in the family, which has disrupted their on-job and/or off-job training. This may or may not have involved a suspension of the training contract.
    • The apprentice/trainee requires additional time to achieve their on-job competencies.

Examples of when it is unlikely an extension would be granted:

    • Where not all parties have agreed to the extension, or in some cases, where the training contract has previously been extended for a significant period of time.

Please note that in the circumstance of a trainee having difficulty with their study and the training contract end date approaching you should discuss this situation with Stanton Institute and the Jobs4Youth Team to identify strategies that may assist them to complete within the term of their training contract.

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