Version 4
August 2021
Apprenticeships in the electrical industry - employer information (PDF, 384KB)


Apprenticeships are pathways to obtaining a qualification or statement of attainment by completing employment-based training under a registered training contract. It is essential the employment arrangements, including facilities, range of work and supervision, support a high quality apprenticeship outcome.

Employers of apprentices must work closely with their nominated supervising registered training organisation (SRTO) to determine the workplace-based tasks, which are required for the apprentice to complete the selected apprenticeship.

What the apprenticeship system offers in the electrical industry

The most common qualification currently being used in the electrical industry is UEE30820 Certificate III in Electrotechnology Electrician. This qualification can lead to the apprentice obtaining an electrical fitter and electrical mechanic licence issued by the Electrical Safety Office (ESO), after the completion of the apprenticeship.

Other apprenticeship pathways available in the UEE Electrotechnology Training Package which may lead to a licenced outcome are:

  • UEE33020 Certificate III in Electrical Fitting (electrical fitter licence)
  • UEE32120 Certificate III in Appliance Service (restricted electrical work licence)
  • UEE32220 Certificate III in Air-conditioning and Refrigeration (restricted electrical work licence)
  • UEE30620 Certificate III in Electrical Machine Repair (electrical fitter licence or restricted electrical work licence)
  • UEE31220 Certificate III in Instrumentation and Control (restricted electrical work licence)
  • UEE40620 Certificate IV in Electrotechnology - Systems Electrician (electrical fitter licence or electrical mechanic licence).

Note: The licencing outcome is dependent on the employer's scope of work and the units of competency selected in the apprenticeship. Employers and apprentices need to discuss the proposed licencing outcome with their SRTO when the SRTO is completing the employer resource assessment and developing the training plan.

The following UEE qualifications may lead to a restricted electrical work licence outcome dependent on the elective units selected when developing the training plan:

  • UEE31020 Certificate III in Fire Protection Control
  • UEE30920 Certificate III in Electronics and Communications.

The UET Transmission, Distribution and Rail Sector Training Package provides pathways to the electrical jointer and electrical linesperson licencing outcomes.

It may also be possible to obtain a licencing outcome from other qualifications such as those within the MEM Metals and Engineering Training Package. This is dependent on the units of competency selected when developing the training plan and successfully completed during the apprenticeship.

Employer responsibilities

Employers must provide the apprentice with tasks and training in the workplace which align to the apprenticeship.

When developing the training plan the SRTO will identify the types of work tasks which are required to be provided in the workplace. If there are any gaps the SRTO will work with the employer to determine how the training and assessment may occur for the tasks not available in the workplace.

Alternatives may include:

  • simulated tasks and assessment
  • temporary transfer to another employer
  • permanent transfer to another employer
  • use of a group training organisation
  • amending the qualification to one more suited to the workplace.

It is the employer's responsibility to provide, or arrange to provide, the range of work, supervision and facilities required under the training plan. If an employer is unable or unwilling to work with the SRTO to resolve the identified gaps or amend the qualification, the training contract will need to be cancelled.

Employers need to work with the SRTO to ensure the apprentice progresses through the apprenticeship in accordance with the training plan. The SRTO and employer need to monitor progression and make sure the apprentice is continuing to gain exposure to the required range of work tasks required under the apprenticeship.

If there are changes in the employer's capacity to provide, or arrange to provide, the range of work, supervision and facilities required under the training plan, the ongoing validity of the training contract must be assessed.

Group training organisations and employers who have specialty areas within their business operation must make sure apprentices are adequately rotated between job roles to gain the required range of tasks in the workplace to achieve competency.

Training records (eProfiling or alternative)

Apprentices in the electrical industry must demonstrate they are undertaking the required range of work as they progress through their apprenticeship. eProfiling (or alternative) is used to capture the details of work being undertaken by the apprentice, the supervision being provided, and for validation by a licensed tradesperson that the record is accurate.

SRTOs must monitor eProfiling (or alternative) throughout the apprenticeship and flag any potential issues with the employer and/or apprentice relating to the work being undertaken. This monitoring may identify that the employer needs to find a broad range of work tasks to allow the apprentice to progress.

Apprentices must submit their eProfiling (or alternative) on a regular basis and employers must ensure the record is validated in a timely manner. Failure to do this may impact on the apprentice's progression and/or involve disciplinary action from the Department of Employment, Small Business and Training.

Issues relating to intermittent and/or delayed submission of eProfiling (or alternative) may also result in delays obtaining an electrical licence at the completion of the apprenticeship.

For further information

Contact Apprenticeships Info on 1800 210 210.

SRTOs share some of the responsibilities for apprentice progression. Refer to ATIS-051 Compliance and complaints - training plan and employer resource assessment information sheet.

All electrical work performed by a licensed electrical contractor must be performed or supervised by a qualified technical person (QTP) who is endorsed on the licence. Additional information relating to the QTP and obligations relating to an apprenticeship are available on the ESO website.

Note: This information was created as a result of the 2016 review of the electrical training in Queensland by the Queensland Training Ombudsman. The review was requested following the death of a construction industry worker and the subsequent Coroner's report. The Coroner highlighted concerns regarding the competence of the electrical contractor responsible for the electrical work conducted on the site, specifically focusing on the training and breath of experience he had prior to receiving his electrical contractor's licence.

As a result of the review, the department reviewed the training contract arrangements for apprentice electricians.

Last updated 9 November 2021

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