AMCA Responds to Electrotechnologies Skills Forecast 2018

Published: 20 February 2018

The AMCA welcomes the findings of the Electrotechnology Industry Skills forecast, which we confirm is largely consistent with the feedback we have received via our own member surveys and anecdotal reports. 

Key points raised by the AMCA as part of our submission include:

  • A key concern of our members relates to the supply of apprentices to the commercial segment of their industry. This is a complex problem with multiple factors requiring consideration, including the attractiveness of the industry to prospective apprentices, the duration of the certificate III relative to other options, and the incentives for training institutions to offer the apprenticeship.
  • There is a strong demand from industry for apprentices to be more job ready at the completion of their apprenticeship. This requires increased emphasis on pre-apprenticeships, including preparatory training and education focused on language, literacy and numeracy.
  • Issues related to language, literacy and numeracy are also a contributing factor to the challenges being experienced by training organisations in the delivery of current qualifications. We believe these are best addressed before a student begins their apprenticeship and the current Commonwealth Government’s skills strategy provides a significant opportunity to promote the broader development and uptake of pre-apprenticeships.
  • Advancements in technology and the diversity of applications found in commercial buildings presents a continual challenge for training institutions to ensure that apprentices and post-trade students can be trained with the latest technologies, applications and techniques.
  • Similarly, changes in technology present a significant challenge for teachers to remain current in their technical knowledge. A professional development pathway for teachers to upskill on the latest technologies and pedagogical practices is vital for teacher attraction, retention and the quality of training outcomes for students.
  • The current process for revising and updating training packages requires a long lead time, hindering the ability of training providers to respond to the needs of industry, and industry’s ability to deliver innovative and best practice outcomes for clients.
  • In technology driven industries (such as air conditioning and refrigeration) it must be a fundamental objective of the training system to ensure that technicians have the knowledge and aptitude that will allow them to grasp new technologies as they hit the market.
  • A combination of commercial and policy drivers is likely to see increased demand for skills that can deliver better environmental outcomes, especially energy efficiency.
  • The issue of higher level skills and post-trade training identified in the discussion paper is an ongoing concern for industry and is likely to intensify. One important example relates to the changing profile of gases contained in air conditioning and refrigeration systems, which has implications for both the performance and safety of the systems.

 Download the AMCA's submission here