The Federal Government has announced a new partnership with EE-Oz Training Standards to introduce vital reforms to electrical apprenticeships and improve apprenticeship retention rates.


Minister for Skills, Senator Chris Evans, today announced EE-Oz, the Industry Skills Council for ElectroComms and Energy Utilities industries, will receive more than $20 million to introduce the reforms.


The initiative, led by industry, enables apprentices to progress through their training as they demonstrate the required competencies, rather than on a time served basis.


"It means that apprentices who meet competencies earlier benefit by obtaining their formal qualification sooner," Senator Evans said.


"These reforms are about recognising that apprentices are no longer just school leavers - many bring valuable skills and experiences to their apprenticeships which should be recognised through competency based progression.”


Senator Evans said the apprentices would also receive help to complete their training, with targeted mentoring and support.


EE-Oz will engage 50 industry qualified mentors and advisers to support apprentices and employers to help raise completion rates.


"Mentoring is a proven way to help improve the experience of an apprentice, especially in the first years of their training when they are not only learning new skills, but also getting used to the routine and discipline required in a workplace," Senator Evans said.


"The mentors and advisers will help to improve retention rates by giving potential apprentices a realistic expectation of the requirements of technical training by providing a comprehensive mentoring service.”