Large scale Aboriginal trainee programme produces industry-leading outcomes
Our customer was the leading contractor engaged to upgrade the existing Pacific Highway on the south coast of New South Wales. The upgrade consists of designing and building a four-lane divided freeway.
Consistent with its reconciliation action plan and government procurement status, our customer had a key focus on the provision of sustainable employment outcomes for Aboriginal people from the local community.
Programmed worked with the customer on earlier phases of the project to manage the recruitment and ongoing management of Aboriginal trainees.
More recently, we were successful in securing a further contract with the customer to replicate the success of the earlier projects. This time we would be overseeing the recruitment and management of local Aboriginal people to undertake a Certificate III in Civil Construction Traineeship working on the upgrade of the Pacific Highway from Oxley to Kundabung.
To ensure we attracted local Aboriginal community members, with preference to local traditional owner groups, traineeships were advertised via local community, local Aboriginal land councils, and other relevant networks.
PSW is experienced in implementing a culturally appropriate end-to-end recruitment process, with staff trained in cultural sensitivity and the need for clear communication.
The trainees are managed and mentored by PWS’s Apprenticeship Field Officer, with support from the Indigenous Employment Services Manager and the local branch staff. The local Area Manager meets with the candidates on a daily basis, and PSW’s Apprenticeship Field Officer holds one-on-one-meetings with candidates each month. Our Indigenous Employment Services Manager is also involved in the ongoing mentoring of the trainees to address any work- related or personal issues that may jeopardise the completion of their traineeships, with quarterly one-on-one meetings or more as required.
The accredited training component of the traineeship is delivered by the local TAFE.
As safety is Programmed’s number one corporate value, trainees completed a comprehensive induction, led by our customer and the Area Manager, before they commenced work. Safety talks are given every second day on-site and again at formal weekly meetings with the Area Manager.
To date, 52 Aboriginal trainees have completed or are in the process of completing this certificate.