Businesses, apprentices and trainees will now have access to new and innovative support services after the 11 organisations making up the new Australian Apprenticeship Support Network were announced today. 


Assistant Minister for Education and Training, Senator Simon Birmingham, said the Australian Apprenticeship Support Network (AASN) is a $200 million annual investment to recruit, train and retain apprentices and trainees across more than 440 locations that will commence on 1 July.


“The aim of this new Apprenticeship Support Network is to improve apprenticeship and traineeship completion rates,” Senator Birmingham said, “which were unacceptably low at around 50 per cent throughout Labor’s term in office.”


“Our government is introducing a new outcomes based arrangement that financially rewards completions, with targeted mentoring to assist apprentices or employers facing difficulty.


“Employers, particularly small business owners, will receive more efficient help in navigating the apprenticeships system, while individuals will be better assisted to complete their training.


“Improving completion rates by helping those who need it most to stay on track means more Australians will get to realise the full benefits of an apprenticeship, and the rewarding careers that can come as a result.”


The AASN will introduce more efficient online processes that focus resources away from paperwork and into delivering advice and direct support to apprentices and employers.


“New targeted pre-commencement services will ensure prospective apprentices and employers have the requisite skills, aptitude and information before signing up,” Senator Birmingham said.


“These services will help to reduce non-completion by ensuring that we have the right apprentices, undertaking the right apprenticeships with the right employers.


“In contrast, Labor cut more than one billion dollars from apprenticeships between 2011 and 2013, including millions of dollars in incentives on the eve of the 2013 election.


“Labor also planned to give employers of apprentices a $46 million annual red tape bill by making employers responsible for the administration of apprenticeships, including determining which incentives they and their apprentice were eligible for.”


Eleven organisations make up the AASN, which will deliver services through more than 440 apprenticeship network provider locations, including in rural and remote areas.


“The successful organisations who will deliver these services all have proven track records in the employment and training market,” Senator Birmingham said.


The full list of Australian Apprenticeship Support Network providers can be viewed at:


Media contact: Caitlin Keage 0427 729 987