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Apprenticeships and traineeships

Western Australia's largest trade training provider

South Metropolitan TAFE is the chosen institution for almost 40 per cent of the state's apprentices. Offering the security and quality assurance of a government-owned college, SM TAFE develops and delivers flexible and industry-relevant training options that address workplace needs.

SM TAFE provides employers with tailored solutions to train and upskill new and existing staff. Lecturers are experts in their respective fields, with access to world-class facilities.

Students receive nationally accredited qualifications and skills development, reducing staff turnover and boosting workforce productivity and profits. Working-age school leavers, those re-entering the workforce and employees seeking a career change or promotion are among the many who undertake an SM TAFE apprenticeship or traineeship.

Employers of SM TAFE students can access student support services
Our capability

More than 3,500 employers team up with SM TAFE to build a skilled and productive workforce. We deliver over 70 apprenticeship trades and 80 traineeship qualifications across all industry sectors. There are 12 campuses in the south metropolitan industrial heartlands of Perth and on-site training and assessment services. 

Strong links with other TAFE providers ensure we have the required capacity, expertise and presence in regional areas. Apprentices and trainees enjoy structured programs of study, including on-the-job training provided by an employer, complemented by off-the-job SM TAFE training.

Our lecturers work in industry and remain contacted to their networks
Apprenticeship and traineeship planning

We will help you move from where you are today to where you want to be in the future. We will ensure that your learning expectations are met by tailoring the content of your training programs to suit yours and industry needs.

The Jobs and Skills Centres at SM TAFE Armadale, Mandurah (Peel), Rockingham, Fremantle and Thornlie campuses can provide workforce planning advice and apprenticeship/traineeship solutions.

Female and male mechanic fixing car
Looking for an apprentice or trainee?

Jobs and Skills Centres (JSC) can help connect you with a work-ready student who has completed a pre-apprenticeship in the relevant trade.

Phone 13 64 64 or email a JSC centre:

Ready to employ an apprentice or trainee?

If you've found someone willing to become your apprentice or trainee, as the employer, you are obliged to provide your apprentice/trainee with the following:

  • Employment and training for the duration of the apprenticeship/traineeship.
  • Every opportunity to learn the skills of the trade or qualification.
  • Necessary time off work (with pay) to attend and complete any required and relevant off-the-job training.
  • A working environment and conditions which contribute to the learning of the trade/qualification.
  • To work with us to develop a training plan that will be reviewed regularly.
  • The apprentice’s training journal as required for on-the-job assessment (apprentices only).

There are 6 steps to completing an apprenticeship or traineeship. We are here to help you and your employee through the process.


Choose an AASN, nominate us as the training partner, and begin entering into a contract with your employee. The contract is a legally binding agreement which sets out the obligations between you, the employer and the apprentice or trainee. If the apprentice or trainee is under the age of 18, the parent or guardian must also sign the contract.

Australian Apprenticeship Support Network (AASN) providers

AASN providers are a valuable source for detailed information and administration services and support to employers, apprentices and trainees. They also assess, approve and process the payment of Australian Government incentives to eligible employers, and personal benefits to eligible apprentices and trainees, specifically to assist in the early years of an apprenticeship of traineeship when wages are at their lowest.

To contact an AASN click on one of the links below or phone the Department of Training and Workforce Development (DWTD) Apprenticeship Office on 13 19 54.

AASN Providers

The AASN provider will lodge the training contract with the DTWD Apprenticeship Office  identifying SM TAFE as the training partner. When the contract is registered, the apprenticeship office will send you and us a notification to begin the process of developing a training plan.

Creating a training plan

The training plan will include the units to be studied and can vary based on your organisational skill needs and the study needs of your employee, including any credit transfers from prior study or Recognition of Prior Learning from prior workplace experience. The training plan will need to be signed within six weeks of the training contract registration date by the employer and employee, and if the employee is under 18 years of age, a parent or guardian signature will also be required.

Once signed, your apprenticeship or traineeship enrolment with us can begin.

Finalising the enrolment

Once we receive the signed Training Plan, we will be able to timetable and enrol your apprentice/trainee to the next available block of training.

The student must provide their Unique Student Identifier before any enrolments can proceed.    

Payment of fees and charges

The enrolment will be finalised when payment is confirmed. Apprentices and trainees are liable to pay for their own fees but some industrial agreements (awards) dictate that employers are required to reimburse their apprentice upon receipt of satisfactory progress. 

Payment options include:

  • The employee can pay the full amount of fees and charges in advance by cash, credit or debit card.

    • The employee can enter into a payment plan at the start of training after making a first payment of $100 and providing bank account details for direct debits. (356 KB) (PDF document)
    • The employee can avoid paying the deposit by nominating a direct debit payment plan 'for the duration of their study' starting 10 days prior to start of training. (Only applicable to block release training and not applicable to day release training)
    • The employer can sign into an agreement to be invoiced for their employee's fees.
    • The employer or employee can make an application for fees and charges to be waived on the ground of financial hardship.

If you as the employer opt to pay the fees and charges, you will need to complete an authority to invoice third party form, available below. Once processed, an invoice will be issued to you for payment prior to commencement of training.

Authority to Invoice Third Party Form (125 KB) (PDF document - opens in a new tab)

Payment of Apprentice Fees Fact Sheet (80 KB) (Word document)


Access to student portal and student email

Once enrolled, your employee can expect to find an email delivered to their personal email address listed in their contract and training plan, with their login and default password for their Student Portal. The Student Portal gives them access to lecturer contact details, study plan and campus information. They will also be issued an Office 365 student email address where all official notification will be sent, and where their timetable will be hosted. The employee will need to access their Office 365 email to reset their password before they can begin using Student Portal.

Information about the Student Portal can be found in the Student Hub. 

“Call up” letter

As soon as your employee is enrolled, we will begin to allocate them into the next available block of study as per the training plan. When the block becomes available, you and your employee will receive an emailed “call up” letter, with a reminder text message prior to the first day.

The call up letter includes the location, date and time of your employee’s first class. It will also include a link to important information relevant to your training such as uniform, Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), booklists, tools or pre-requisite licensing required to bring to class, and a campus map detailing the location of the class on campus. A series of training area specific guides listing the items your employee needs ahead of class start is at the end of this section.

It is important that your employee is ready to attend and train on the date of the call up. If you have any concerns or your employee cannot attend, you must notify us as early as possible.

Phone: 1300 932 677.

Training area requirements

Depending on your course, you may need to arrange Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) or maintain safe dress standards, equipment, textbooks, documentation and licences to study in our on-campus workshops. Check the page on the button below for additional requirements for your employee.

Training area specific requirements

Before arrival

Before your employee arrives on campus for their first class, it’s a good idea to have them check our website to plan their arrival. Campus maps are available on each campus page, where they can also find information about parking and food services such as campus cafeterias or student kitchen facilities. Your employee should find their classroom on the campus map, and identify toilets, prayer rooms, libraries and student support, plus where to find customer service to ask any tricky questions.

Please note: Some campuses have limited parking. We highly recommend your employee makes use of our Smart Travel advice.

Some campuses also feature Aboriginal cultural centres and Jobs and Skills Centres for additional student services. Keep a look out for reduced-rate student facilities such as beauty clinics, Bentley Pines Training Restaurant, Saltbush Training Restaurantveterinary clinic, pet grooming clinic and the garden centre.

Travel allowance

If your apprentice or trainee is required to travel long distances to attend off the job training, they may be eligible for travel and accommodation allowance. To find out if your employee is eligible, visit: Travel and accommodation allowance. 

All travel and accommodation allowance claim/s are to be submitted/uploaded by your employee via TAA portal, along with a copy of the Attendance Verification Form (362 KB) (PDF document). The employee must make sure the attendance verification form is signed by their lecturer prior to submission in the TAA portal. 

If your apprentice or trainee wishes to claim, the following forms must be used and returned to

Apprenticeship traineeship travel application form (99 KB) (Word document)

Apprenticeship traineeship request change travel booking form (174 KB) (Word document)  (141 KB) (PDF document - opens in a new tab)  


On your employee’s first day, they will be greeted by their lecturer in their classroom or designated area and given orientation. They will be taken through emergency management procedures, campus facilities, an introduction to the training area, and will detail your employee’s rights and responsibilities as a student at SM TAFE.

Student and apprenticeship disability support

If your employee has a disability, please encourage them to register with Student Support, who can assist with learning difficulties, sudden or temporary health issues, and can provide reasonable adjustment strategies to help your employee succeed. In addition, the Apprenticeship and Traineeship Support Unit (ATSU) is available to support students and employers with maintaining training.

You can contact ATSU on 1300 932 677 or at

Student and apprenticeship enrolment and attendance

If at any time you need to speak about the administration of your employee, you can contact the relevant campus administration team:

As your employee progresses through their studies, the progress they make will vary from course to courses and across training areas. In most cases they will complete training record books, and in others they will use various systems to work through units of competency, record attendance and hours of work and access online study portals. At any time, you can contact the ATSU office on 1300 932 677 to access their latest progress report.

Systems to record evidence of skills

Licensed trades apprenticeships have training package requirements to keep a register of evidence of skills practiced on the job. This evidence needs to be gathered over time to determine the competency of an apprentice against the requirements of the national qualification. For this to happen, an apprentice needs to track his or her work activities (on and off the job) and be monitored throughout the duration of their apprenticeship.

The information below applies only to relevant training areas and should be checked with your employee’s lecturer.

Blackboard – an online learning tool with online study resources. The login for Blackboard will be the same as the Office365 login your student received at the start of their study.

Ready skills - This app allows electrical students at Mandurah, Rockingham and Thornlie to upload evidence of their progress and communications between lecturing staff, the employee and employer. 

Capstone testing – is a requirement for electrical students who are near to completion of their apprenticeship. To arrange capstone training, speak with the lecturer or contact us.


It is important to monitor your student’s attendance to be sure they fulfil their training contract. If your employee cannot attend a class, you must call us on 1300 932 677. If your employee fails to attend a class, you will receive an email notification from us.

Approximately six weeks prior to the training contract completion date, the Apprenticeship and Traineeship Support Unit (ATSU) will confirm that your apprentice or trainee has completed all the off-the-job studies and issue you a Training Contract Completion Agreement form via email. 

Once signed and returned by all parties, SM TAFE will notify the Apprenticeship Office of the agreed completion date. We will then issue the qualification to the apprentice or trainee and DTWD will issue the Trade Certificate. 

Early completion

Once your apprentice has completed 100% of the training plan we will contact you to advise that off the job study is completed. You have the option at this time of signing your apprentice off as complete which will bring forward the completion date. Should you feel that your apprentice still requires time to develop their skills on the job, you can opt to continue until the scheduled completion date.

Training contract extension

A training contract may be extended if both the apprentice or trainee and the employer agree that the training required will not be completed within the nominal term. A notice to extend a training contract from the Apprenticeship Office website(opens in a new tab) must be received by the Apprenticeship Office before the expiry date of the training contract. You can login to the WAAMS portal(opens in a new tab) and complete the paperwork there.

Transfer of training contract

If all parties agree, you can transfer the training contract to another employer during the course of the apprenticeship or traineeship. Find out more at the Apprenticeship Office website(opens in a new tab) .


Out-of-contract apprentices

To cancel a training contract, you will need to notify both us and the Apprenticeship Office(opens in a new tab) . An apprentice or trainee can continue their studies with us for a further six months without an employer but the student will be liable for their own fees during this time.

We can assist out-of-contract apprentices and trainees find another employer organisation to continue pursuing their trade qualification. Contact the Jobs and Skills Centre at our Thornlie campus to begin the process.


Looking for suitable apprentice employee candidates

If you’ve identified a need to fill skill gaps in your organisation but don’t have a candidate ready to employ, talk to us as we have quality students and graduates in pre-apprenticeship qualifications looking for their next career step. 

In addition, our Jobs and Skills Centres staff can assist you to place advertisements on the Jobs and Skills WA jobs board(opens in a new tab) and can put you in touch with registered jobseekers.

Post-trade qualifications for yourself or your employees

Keeping up with technology, regulations or skills trends makes good sense for your business. We regularly offer skill sets and post-trade short courses to upskill you and your staff. Keep an eye on our skill sets and short courses page for available courses, dates and costs.

Updating your business details

Employer details are downloaded to our system from the apprenticeship office and apply to your training contract. We unfortunately cannot update an employer’s details. If your employer details need to be updated you can login to the WAAMS portal(opens in a new tab) and complete the update yourself.

Contact us

Get help with your apprentice or trainee, or help finding and arranging an apprenticeship or traineeship.

Phone: 1800 001 001


Use the form below to have a staff member contact you.