Employing an apprentice: the information and incentives you need

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Links, information and resources for mechanical workshop owners in Australia and New Zealand interested in taking on an apprentice.

If you’re thinking about taking on an apprentice, congratulations!

Apprenticeships are the way most of us got our start in the industry. Taking on an apprentice of your own is an excellent way to share all your knowledge and experience, give back to the industry, and play a part in training the next generation of technicians. In fact, three-quarters of Capricorn Members told our 2020 State of the Nation survey that training the next generation was the main reason they took on an apprentice.

But it’s a big commitment. It takes time, effort and dedication. The good news is you don’t have to do it alone — there’s a lot of support out there for mechanical workshop owners who employ apprentices.

In this article you’ll find links to the information you need to know in your home country or state, including information about the various incentives you can leverage to your advantage, to make taking on an apprentice even more worthwhile.

National resources for workshops taking on apprentices

Across Australia and New Zealand, governments are offering incentives to help get young people into apprenticeships.

New Zealand

The New Zealand Government is currently offering business owners an incentive to take on apprentices, called Apprenticeship Boost, which subsidises wages for first- and second-year apprentices. It’s a response to the economic impacts of Covid-19 and is available until August 2022. Here’s how to apply.

There’s also a special adult training program called Mana in Mahi, for those who need extra help to get into long-term work, which may suit your needs.

You’ll find general information relevant to taking on an apprentice in New Zealand at these links:


The Australian Federal Government also offers a range of incentives to help businesses employ apprentices. A simplified and streamlined incentives program was due to be launched in mid-2021, but that was delayed by the pandemic and is now expected to launch in October 2021. You can find information about the original (and now extended) You’ll also find updated information here once the new incentive program launches.

State-by-state information for employers of apprentices

In Australia the various state governments also offer a range of support services for employers of apprentices. These include everything from helplines, to lists of available financial assistance (for example, here’s WA’s), to all the regulatory information you need to know, to help actually finding an apprentice.

You’ll find a lot of the information you need to employ an apprentice in your state by following these links:

Why taking on an apprentice is a great opportunity

We know from State of the Nation that finding good staff is one of the big challenges Members face. There’s a real shortage of qualified technicians out there. The apprentices of today are the qualified technicians of tomorrow. They’re our industry’s pipeline of talent. Yes, training an apprentice takes time, money and effort, but it’s an investment not just in the future of your business but in the future of our industry, too.

Taking advantage of the support and incentives on offer from your relevant governments should make it that little bit easier to employ a new team member.

Why not click on the links above that are relevant to you and begin your journey towards employing an apprentice?

This article was published 16/07/2021 and the content is current as at the date of publication.