Release type: Media Release


New targeted and tailored support for apprentices


The Hon Brendan O'Connor MP
Minister for Skills and Training

Apprentices and their employers now have greater access to targeted and ongoing support services, with the Albanese Labor Government rolling out a strengthened apprenticeship support model.

Apprentice Connect Australia (ACA) commenced on 1 July 2024 and has been designed to place the apprentice at the centre of the apprenticeship journey.

Apprentice Connect Australia providers will work with apprentices and employers on an enhanced assessment that will take place at the start of an apprenticeship to identify areas where additional support may be required early on, to help set up apprentices for success.

Targeted mentoring support services will also be provided for apprentices most in need, with a greater focus on diversity and inclusion, including:

  • Women in male-dominated trades
  • First Nations apprentices
  • Apprentices with disability
  • Apprentices in remote Australia
  • Apprentices at risk of not finishing their apprenticeship.

Mentoring services for apprentices will include personalised pastoral care and extra support for those with complex needs, career guidance and advice, and peer support networks.

For employers, mentoring will include support to better understand their roles and responsibilities in the workplace, strategies to effectively supervise and manage apprentices and connections to training and support services.

Some specialist providers will focus on delivering assistance to apprentice groups including:

  • Women in male-dominated trades
  • First Nations apprentices
  • Apprentices working towards clean energy occupations.

Apprentice Connect Australia will make it easier to engage with the apprenticeship system by minimising the administrative burden for apprentices and employers.

ACA providers will also help apprentices and employers access available financial incentives.

Apprentices training in priority areas and their employers are now eligible for additional incentives to help them complete their training and subsidise costs.

Priority apprentices are eligible for an additional $2,000 ($5,000 total) and employers are eligible for an additional $1,000 ($5,000 total).

The Albanese Government’s recent Budget included a $265 million investment to reverse cuts left by the Coalition.

To find out more about Apprentice Connect Australia and find an apprenticeship provider in your state or territory visit:

Quotes attributable to the Minister for Skills and Training, the Hon Brendan O’Connor MP:

“Apprentices have been and continue to be a key component of Australia’s skilled workforce.

“A successful apprenticeship system means a successful and prosperous economy, as custodians of the apprenticeship system Apprentice Connect Australia providers have a great responsibility to ensure this success is realised.

“Providing targeted support to apprentices is crucial to filling skills gaps and ensuring Australia has a skilled workforce ready for the future.

“Apprentice Connect Australia and the strengthened support measures will increase diversity within the apprentice workforce and provide more opportunities for women in male-dominated fields.

“Personalised mentoring support, especially in the first two years, can significantly improve completion rates.

“This investment will help more apprentices develop a sustainable career pathway.”