Pay rates for apprentices

This page is for: 
EmployerEmployee / worker

wa_image_small.jpg This information is only relevant to employers and employees in the WA state industrial relations system – sole traders, unincorporated partnerships, unincorporated trusts and some incorporated or not for profit organisations. Find out more on the Guide to who is in the WA state system page.

If you operate or are employed by a Pty Ltd business – you can find information on this topic on the Fair Work Ombudsman website.

About this page

  • This page outlines how to find the correct pay rates for state system employees who are undertaking an apprenticeship registered with the Apprenticeship Office at the Department of Training and Workforce Development. 
  • If the employee is undertaking a registered traineeship, please visit the Pay rates for trainees page.

About apprenticeships

Apprenticeships can be undertaken on a full time or part time basis. Casual workers are not eligible to enter into a training contract for an apprenticeship.

An employer is required to pay an apprentice for time spent at TAFE (or other off the job training) as normal working hours. An employer is not required to pay TAFE fees on behalf of the apprentice.

The Apprenticeship Office at the Department of Training and Workforce Development can provide information about:

  • assessment and registration of a training contract
  • obligations under a training contract
  • completion of a training contract
  • variations to a training contract (including cancellation, suspension or termination of the contract)

The pay rate for an apprentice will depend on the term (length) of the apprenticeship and which year of the apprenticeship the apprentice is currently undertaking.  

An adult apprentice (21 years of age or older) must be paid the minimum pay rate for adult apprentices, or the apprentice pay rate for the relevant year of their apprenticeship, whichever is higher.

Arrangements in WA awards for apprentices

In the state industrial relations system, WA awards cover many industries and occupations.  Wageline has WA award summaries of the most common WA awards.

The pay rate for an apprentice will depend on the term (length) of the apprenticeship and which year of the apprenticeship the apprentice is currently undertaking.

An adult apprentice (21 years of age or older) must be paid the minimum pay rate for adult apprentices, or the apprentice pay rate for the relevant year of their apprenticeship, whichever is higher.

WA awards that contain apprentice pay rates

Most WA awards that cover industries or occupations in which apprenticeships have been a traditional method of obtaining a trade qualification include a specific job classification and pay rates for apprentices.

When an apprentice is covered by a WA award that has an apprentice job classification, the apprentice is entitled to the apprentice pay rates and the other provisions in the WA award, including working hours, penalty rates, allowances and leave entitlements, as appropriate.  

Many of these WA awards require an employer to provide a tool allowance, travel allowance or other allowances to apprentices.  Apprentices working in regional areas may also be entitled to location allowance. View the relevant WA award summary on the WA award summaries page. 

Key WA awards that contain apprenticeship pay rates and provisions are:

  • Bakers (Metropolitan) Award
  • Building Trades Award
  • Building Trades (Construction) Award
  • Club Workers Award
  • Dental Technicians and Attendant / Receptionists Award
  • Electrical Contracting Industry Award
  • Furniture Trades Industry Award
  • Hairdressers Award
  • Hotel and Tavern Workers Award
  • Landscape Gardening Industry Award
  • Meat Industry Award
  • Metal Trades (General) Award
  • Motel, Hostel, Service Flats and Boarding House Workers Award
  • Pastrycooks Award
  • Restaurant Tearoom and Catering Workers Award
  • Vehicle Builders Award

WA awards that have no apprentice pay rates 

Some WA awards have no job classification that is relevant to the work done by an apprentice, and therefore a registered apprentice in this industry or occupation is not covered by the WA award and is award free. 

Award free apprentices are entitled to the minimum rates for relevant adult or junior award free apprentices (as outlined below), and are entitled to annual leave, sick and carer’s leave and other leave and employment entitlements that apply to award free employees. The Award free employees minimum pay rates and entitlements summary provides an overview of employment conditions for award free employees.

Award free apprentices

If an apprentice is award free, they are to be paid the minimum rate of pay for an award free apprentice.  The minimum rate will vary depending on the term (length) of the apprenticeship and which year the apprentice is currently undertaking. The minimum rates for apprentices are outlined below.

Award free apprentices are entitled to annual leave, sick and carer’s leave and other leave and employment entitlements that apply to award free employees. The Award free employees minimum pay rates and entitlements summary provides an overview of employment conditions for award free employees.

Minimum rates of pay for apprentices

The 2020 State Wage Order issued by the Western Australian Industrial Relations Commission in June 2020 granted an increase in minimum pay rates effective from the first pay period on or after 1 January 2021. This page provides both the rates of pay that apply until 31 December 2020, and the rates that apply from the first period on or after 1 January 2021.

Pay rates for adult award free apprentices 

An adult apprentice (21 years of age or older) must be paid the adult apprentice rate or the appropriate rate for the year of the apprenticeship if that is higher.   

The adult award free apprentice pay rates for 4 year, 3.5 year and 3 year apprenticeships are outlined below.

Adult award free apprentices- applies from the first pay period on or after 1 July 2020

Four year apprenticeship – adult award free apprentice pay rates

 

Year of apprenticeship

Weekly rate
(for 38 hours)

First year

$638.20

Second year

$638.20

Third year

$638.20

Fourth year

$748.80

 

 

3.5 year apprenticeship – adult award free apprentices pay rates

Year of apprenticeship

Weekly rate
(for 38 hours)

First six months

$638.20

7-18 months

$638.20

19-30 months

$638.20

31-42 months

$748.80

 

 

3 year apprenticeship – adult award free apprentice pay rates

Year of apprenticeship

Weekly rate
(for 38 hours)

First year

$638.20

Second year

$638.20

Third year

$748.80

 

Adult award free apprentices - applies from the first pay period on or after 1 January 2021

Four year apprenticeship – adult award free apprentice pay rates

Year of apprenticeship

Weekly rate
(for 38 hours)

First year

$649.40

Second year

$649.40

Third year

$649.40

Fourth year

$761.90

 

3.5 year apprenticeship – adult award free apprentices pay rates

Year of apprenticeship

Weekly rate
(for 38 hours)

First six months

$649.40

7-18 months

$649.40

19-30 months

$649.40

31-42 months

$761.90

 

3 year apprenticeship – adult award free apprentice pay rates

Year of apprenticeship

Weekly rate
(for 38 hours)

First year

$649.40

Second year

$649.40

Third year

$761.90

 

 

Pay rates for junior award free apprentices 

Junior award free apprentices - applies from the first pay period on or after 1 July 2020.

4 year apprenticeship - Junior award free apprentice pay rates

Year of apprenticeship

Weekly rate
(for 38 hours)

First year

$357.40

Second year

$468.00

Third year

$638.20

Fourth year

$748.80

 

 

3.5 year apprenticeship - junior award free apprentice pay rates

Year of apprenticeship

Weekly rate
(for 38 hours)

First six months

$357.40

7-18 months

$468.00

19-30 months

$638.20

31-42 months

$748.80

 

 

3 year apprenticeship – junior award free apprentice pay rates

Year of apprenticeship

Weekly rate

(for 38 hours)

First year

$468.00

Second year

$638.20

Third year

$748.80

 

 

Junior award free apprentices - applies from the first pay period on or after 1 July 2021.

4 year apprenticeship - Junior award free apprentice pay rates

 

Year of apprenticeship Weekly rate (for 38 hours)
First year $363.60
Second year $476.20
Third year $649.40
Fourth year $761.90

3.5 year apprenticeship - Junior award free apprentice pay rates

Year of apprenticeship Weekly rate (for 38 hours)
First six months $363.60
7-18 months $476.20
19-30 months $649.40
31-42 months $761.90

3 year apprenticeship - Junior award free apprentice pay rates

 

Year of apprenticeship Weekly rate (for 38 hours)
First year $476.20
Second year $649.40
Third year $761.90

 

 

 

 

 

Share this page:

Last modified: