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Prime Mover Magazine

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Peter Anderson

Training grant underscores confidence in transport sector

April 2017

Throw in induction and ongoing training and education costs, travel, administration and other expenses, and it’s easy to see how the human resources bill for any organisation can quickly add up.

This is by no means a criticism, because just as people cost money, so too do they make money for a business – ideally many times over their cost to the bottom line. This underscores the need to attract and retain qualified and professional staff to make an operation successful for the long term.

Training, education and skills development are vital parts of staff attraction and retention, especially for the transport industry which experiences frequent ebbs and flows in regulatory, licensing and operational requirements. Keeping pace with this change can make or break a transport business.

The VTA recognised this many years ago and included training and education as a critical service offering, partly as a response to member demand. Hundreds of transport workers have since participated in accredited VTA training programs, with the benefits flowing through to employers and customers alike.

The Victorian Government recently recognised the VTA’s important role in delivering industry training, and I am pleased to release the specifics of a new suite of instructional programs the VTA will deliver industry as a consequence of a grant from Roads Minister Luke Donnellan.

Tasked with helping retrenched and displaced Victorian automotive workers transition to new careers, the Victorian Government has partnered with the VTA on a program that will introduce new people to our industry, train and educate them to be job-ready, place them in suitable roles and mentor them through the transition.

The program is manifest in the form of three standalone training streams that will introduce over 200 people to our industry. The benefits to the industry will be substantial, and will provide ongoing support for the delivery of higher skilled employees who have significant long-term industry prospects.

The three streams include a combination of intensive short- and long-form courses and workshops.

Transport Transition is an eight-module course that will attract those that are new to the industry and require more in-depth knowledge of supply chain, logistics, transport operations and associated regulations. Participants will be job-ready at the conclusion of the program and the VTA will mentor candidates in their first three months of employment.

Driver Delivery is an intensive nine-day industry-ready driver-licensing course to be delivered in either heavy rigid synchromesh or heavy combination standards. Over 60 hours of hands-on training and instruction, drivers will receive advanced skills training covering OH&S, cabin drill, load restraint, loading docks, reversing and standard transport runs.

The Transport Cadetship so successfully run under the auspices of the VTA Academy has received a considerable boost through the program with additional places to be made available for young people joining the industry. The 10-month cadetship provides candidates with a Certificate IV in Transport and Logistics and matches qualified and enthusiastic candidates with employers looking to expand their team.

A major incentive of this program, compared to others in the private sector, is the significant financial savings available for employers wanting to train new and existing members of staff. The Victorian Government grant enables the VTA to offer attractive subsidies for the program, significantly reducing participation costs for candidates and employers.

For example, the Transport Transition course has a face value of $500, but thanks to the subsidy it won’t cost candidates or their employer a cent to participate. Similarly, the $6,175 Driver Delivery course costs an employer nothing, and candidates will be charged a mere $1,000 to ensure they remain committed to the program.

The major benefit of the program is that it produces job-ready candidates and then matches them with real employers, offering real jobs, paying real money.

It is also a tremendous vote of confidence in our industry that the Victorian Government sees the potential for employment growth this program will create for the industry, and we sincerely appreciate its contribution.

I urge candidates and employers interested in these programs to contact the VTA on 03 9646 8590.

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