Pay rates for trainees

This page is for: 
EmployerEmployee / worker

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.

This page outlines how to find the correct pay rates for state system employees who are undertaking a traineeship registered with the Apprenticeship Office at the Department of Training and Workforce Development. On this page these employees are called registered trainees.

If the employee is undertaking an apprenticeship, please visit the Pay rates for apprentices page.

Where an employee is new to, or learning a job, but is not a registered trainee, they must be paid the relevant WA award rate of pay for the work that they are doing, or the minimum rate of pay if the employee is award free. Such employees may be referred to in many businesses as ‘trainees’ but if they are not registered trainees the pay rates and employment arrangements discussed on this page do not apply.  

About traineeships

Traineeships can be undertaken on a full time, part time or school-based basis. Casual workers are not eligible to enter into a training contract for a traineeship.

An employer is required to pay a registered trainee 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 registered trainee.

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)

Arrangements in WA awards for registered trainees

In the state industrial relations system, WA awards cover many industries and occupations. Wageline has WA award summaries of the most common WA awards. There is a variety of ways in which pay rates and employment entitlements are set for registered trainees working in industries or occupations normally covered by a WA award. The four main categories of WA award provisions for registered trainees are outlined below.  

WA awards that contain pay rates for trainees

Some WA awards detail specific pay rates for registered trainees covered by that WA award. In this circumstance, registered trainees must be paid the rates in the relevant WA award and are covered by the other provisions of the WA award, including working hours, penalty rates, allowances and leave entitlements, as appropriate.

For example – the Shop and Warehouse Award has a traineeships clause that lists the minimum pay rates that apply to a registered trainee.  All the other provisions of the Shop and Warehouse Award also cover registered trainees working in businesses covered by that WA award. 

Key WA awards in this category are:

  • Food Industry (Food Manufacturing or Processing) Award
  • Furniture Trades Industry Award
  • Licensed Establishments (Retail and Wholesale) Award
  • Metal Trades (General) Award
  • Motor Vehicle (Service Station, Sales Establishments, Rust Prevention and Paint Protection) Industry Award
  • Printing Award
  • Sheet Metal Workers’ Award
  • Shop and Warehouse (Wholesale and Retail Establishments) Award
  • Soft Furnishings Award
  • Vehicle Builders' Award

WA awards that refer to the obsolete National Training Wage Award

Some WA awards refer to the training provisions in an obsolete federal award called the National Training Wage Award.  Registered trainees under these WA awards must be paid the minimum adult or junior rates for registered trainees as outlined below, and are covered by all other provisions of the relevant WA award including working hours, penalty rates, allowances and leave entitlements.  For example, registered trainees working under the Restaurant, Tearoom and Catering Workers Award are entitled to the pay rates for award free registered trainees and the working hours, allowances, leave entitlements and other provisions of that WA award.

The private sector WA awards in this category are:

  • Aboriginal Communities and Organisations Western Australian Interim Award
  • Animal Welfare Industry Award
  • Children’s Services (Private) Award
  • Club Workers Award
  • Dry Cleaning and Laundry Award
  • Hotel and Tavern Workers Award
  • Laundry Workers Award
  • Motel, Hostel, Service Flats and Boarding House Workers Award
  • Pest Control Industry Award
  • Restaurant, Tearoom and Catering Workers Award
  • Shearing Contractors Award

WA awards that have classifications that may cover the work of a registered trainee

Some WA awards do not have a specific traineeship clause, or have an obsolete traineeship clause that is not valid as it only covers traineeship arrangements that are no longer available in Western Australia.

In these circumstances, if a job classification in the WA award covers the type of work performed by the trainee, the trainee is to be paid the award rate of pay for the relevant classification and their age.

For example, the Farm Employees Award does not contain specific pay rates for registered trainees, but it is likely that the job classification in this WA Award of ‘farm hand’ would cover the duties undertaken by a registered trainee. As such, registered trainees under this award are paid the appropriate adult or junior rate for a farm hand, and are entitled to all other provisions of the Farm Employees Award including working hours and leave entitlements. 

WA awards that have no classifications that cover the work of registered trainees

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

For example, the Hairdressers Award does not cover employees undertaking a registered traineeship in hairdressing as there is no job classification relevant to registered trainees under this WA award, and therefore registered trainees in that industry are award free.

Award free registered trainees are entitled to the minimum rates for relevant adult or junior award free registered trainees (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.

Contact Wageline for information if you are unsure which category is appropriate for a particular traineeship.

Award free registered trainees

All registered trainees working in industries or occupations that are award free (not covered by a WA award) are entitled to the minimum pay rates for registered trainees. For example, a registered trainee working in a beauty salon is award free, and the rate of pay for this registered trainee will be the relevant minimum rate of pay for a registered trainee. 

The relevant minimum pay rate is based on the Industry/Skill Level of the traineeship being undertaken, and if the employee is a junior employee (under 21 years of age) the highest level of schooling the registered trainee has completed, and how long they have been out of school.

The minimum pay rates for registered trainees are outlined below. Award free registered trainees 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 pay rates for registered trainees

The minimum pay rates for registered trainees apply to all registered trainees who are award free (not covered by a WA award), and to some WA award registered trainees, as outlined above.

The minimum pay rates for registered trainees are based on the Industry/Skill Level of the traineeship being undertaken, and if the employee is a junior employee (under 21 years of age) the highest level of schooling the registered trainee has completed, and how long they have been out of school. 

Minimum pay rate tables for registered trainees are provided below for each of the three Industry/ Skill Levels A, B and C. The appropriate Industry/Skill Level for a traineeship can be found by matching the first three letters of the National Qualification Code and the AQF Certificate Level of the employee’s traineeship (found in the Traineeship Details section on the trainee’s Training Contract) with the Level A, B or C section of the Industry/Skill level in the Industry Skills List

Registered trainees who are undertaking qualifications at AQF IV level must be paid an additional 3.8% loading on the applicable rate.

The 2020 State Wage Order issued by the WAIRC 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. 

Minimum pay rates for full time registered trainees

Adult full time trainees - applies from the first pay period on or after 1 July 2020

A registered trainee who has reached 21 years of age must be paid the following weekly rates of pay:

Industry/Skill Level Weekly rate (for 38 hours)
A $585.00
B $566.00
C $519.00
Registered trainees who are undertaking qualifications at AQF IV level must be paid an additional 3.8% loading on the applicable rate.

 

Adult full time trainees - applies from the first pay period on or after 1 January 2021

A registered trainee who has reached 21 years of age must be paid the following weekly rates of pay:

Industry/Skill Level Weekly rate (for 38 hours)
A $595.00
B $576.00
C $528.00
Registered trainees who are undertaking qualifications at AQF IV level must be paid an additional 3.8% loading on the applicable rate.

 

Junior full time trainees - applies from the first pay period on or after 1 July 2020

A junior registered trainee (under 21 years of age) must be paid the following weekly rates of pay:

Industry/Skill Level A
  Year 10 Year 11 Year 12
school leaver $258.00 $307.00 $378.00
plus 1 year out of school $307.00 $378.00 $438.00
plus 2 years $378.00 $438.00 $512.00
plus 3 years $438.00 $512.00 $585.00
plus 4 years $512.00 $585.00  
plus 5 years or more $585.00    
Industry/Skill Level B
  Year 10 Year 11 Year 12
school leaver $258.00 $307.00 $369.00
plus 1 year out of school $307.00 $369.00 $422.00
plus 2 years $369.00 $422.00 $496.00
plus 3 years $422.00 $496.00 $566.00
plus 4 years $496.00 $566.00  
plus 5 years or more $566.00    
Industry/Skill Level C
  Year 10 Year 11 Year 12
school leaver $258.00 $307.00 $367.00
plus 1 year out of school $307.00 $367.00 $412.00
plus 2 years $367.00 $412.00 $462.00
plus 3 years $412.00 $462.00 $519.00
plus 4 years $462.00 $519.00  
plus 5 years or more $519.00    

Registered trainees who are undertaking qualifications at AQF IV level must be paid an additional 3.8% loading on the applicable rate.

Junior full time trainees - applies from the first pay period on or after 1 January 2021

A junior registered trainee (under 21 years of age) must be paid the following weekly rates of pay:

Industry/Skill Level A
  Year 10 Year 11 Year 12
school leaver $263.00 $312.00 $385.00
plus 1 year out of school $312.00 $385.00 $446.00
plus 2 years $385.00 $446.00 $521.00
plus 3 years $446.00 $521.00 $595.00
plus 4 years $521.00 $595.00  
plus 5 years or more $595.00    
Industry/Skill Level B
  Year 10 Year 11 Year 12
school leaver $263.00 $312.00 $375.00
plus 1 year out of school $312.00 $375.00 $429.00
plus 2 years $375.00 $429.00 $505.00
plus 3 years $429.00 $505.00 $576.00
plus 4 years $505.00 $576.00  
plus 5 years or more $576.00    
Industry/Skill Level C
  Year 10 Year 11 Year 12
school leaver $263.00 $312.00 $373.00
plus 1 year out of school $312.00 $373.00 $419.00
plus 2 years $373.00 $419.00 $470.00
plus 3 years $419.00 $470.00 $528.00
plus 4 years $470.00 $528.00  
plus 5 years or more $528.00    

Registered trainees who are undertaking qualifications at AQF IV level must be paid an additional 3.8% loading on the applicable rate.

Minimum pay rates for part time registered trainees

Adult part time trainees - applies from the first pay period on or after 1 July 2020

An award free registered trainee is 21 years or older is entitled to the following hourly rates of pay:

Industry/Skill Level Hourly pay rate
A $15.39
B $14.89
C $13.66

Registered trainees who are undertaking qualifications at AQF IV level must be paid an additional 3.8% loading on the applicable rate.

Adult part time trainees - applies from the first pay period on or after 1 January 2021

An award free registered trainee is 21 years or older is entitled to the following hourly rates of pay:

Industry/Skill Level Hourly pay rate
A $15.66
B $15.16
C $13.89

Registered trainees who are undertaking qualifications at AQF IV level must be paid an additional 3.8% loading on the applicable rate.

Junior part time trainees - applies from the first pay period on or after 1 July 2020

Junior award free part time registered trainees are entitled to the following hourly rates of pay:

Industry/Skill Level B
  Year 10 Year 11 Year 12
school leaver $6.79 $8.08 $9.95
plus 1 year out of school $8.08 $9.95 $11.53
plus 2 years $9.95 $11.53 $13.47
plus 3 years $11.53 $13.47 $15.39
plus 4 years $13.47 $15.39  
plus 5 years or more $15.39    
Industry/Skill Level B
  Year 10 Year 11 Year 12
school leaver $6.79 $8.08 $9.71
plus 1 year out of school $8.08 $9.71 $11.11
plus 2 years $9.71 $11.11 $13.05
plus 3 years $11.11 $13.05 $14.89
plus 4 years $13.05 $14.89  
plus 5 years or more $14.89    
Industry/Skill Level C
  Year 10 Year 11 Year 12
school leaver $6.79 $8.08 $9.66
plus 1 year out of school $8.08 $9.66 $10.84
plus 2 years $9.66 $10.84 $12.16
plus 3 years $10.84 $12.16 $13.66
plus 4 years $12.16 $13.66  
plus 5 years or more $13.66    

Registered trainees who are undertaking qualifications at AQF IV level must be paid an additional 3.8% loading on the applicable rate.

Junior part time trainees - applies from the first pay period on or after 1 January 2021

Junior award free part time registered trainees are entitled to the following hourly rates of pay:

Industry/Skill Level B
  Year 10 Year 11 Year 12
school leaver $6.92 $8.21 $10.13
plus 1 year out of school $8.21 $10.13 $11.74
plus 2 years $10.13 $11.74 $13.71
plus 3 years $11.74 $13.71 $15.66
plus 4 years $13.71 $15.66  
plus 5 years or more $15.66    
Industry/Skill Level B
  Year 10 Year 11 Year 12
school leaver $6.92 $8.21 $9.87
plus 1 year out of school $8.21 $9.87 $11.29
plus 2 years $9.87 $11.29 $13.29
plus 3 years $11.29 $13.29 $15.16
plus 4 years $13.29 $15.16  
plus 5 years or more $15.16    
Industry/Skill Level C
  Year 10 Year 11 Year 12
school leaver $6.92 $8.21 $9.82
plus 1 year out of school $8.21 $9.82 $11.03
plus 2 years $9.82 $11.03 $12.37
plus 3 years $11.03 $12.37 $13.89
plus 4 years $12.37 $13.89  
plus 5 years or more $13.89    

Registered trainees who are undertaking qualifications at AQF IV level must be paid an additional 3.8% loading on the applicable rate.

Pay rates for school based registered trainees

School based trainees - applies from the first pay period on or after 1 July 2020

Industry/Skill Level Current year of schooling
  Year 11 or lower Year 12
A $8.08 $9.95
B $8.08 $9.71
C $8.08 $9.66

Registered trainees who are undertaking qualifications at AQF IV level must be paid an additional 3.8% loading on the applicable rate.

School based trainees - applies from the first pay period on or after 1 January 2021

Industry/Skill Level Current year of schooling
  Year 11 or lower Year 12
A $8.21 $10.13
B $8.21 $9.87
C $8.21 $9.82

Registered trainees who are undertaking qualifications at AQF IV level must be paid an additional 3.8% loading on the applicable rate.

Industry/Skill Level list

The appropriate Industry/Skill Level for a traineeship can be found by matching the first three letters of the National Qualification Code and the AQF Certificate Level of the employee’s traineeship (found in the Traineeship Details section on the trainee’s Training Contract) with the Level A, B or C section of the Industry/Skill level in the Industry Skills List.

Industry/Skill Level A

Code Training Package Title AQF Certificate Level
MEA Aeroskills II, Diploma
AVI Aviation II, III
BSB Business Services II, III, IV, Diploma
PMA Chemical, Hydrocarbons and Refining II, III, IV, Diploma
CHC Community Services II, III, IV, Diploma
CPC Construction, Plumbing and Services II, III, IV, Diploma
CSC Correctional Services II, III, IV
UEP Electricity Supply Industry - Generation Sector II, III, IV, Diploma
UEE Electrotechnology

II, III, IV, Diploma, Advanced Diploma

FNS Financial Services II, III, IV
SFL Floristry III, IV
FBP Food, Beverage and Pharmaceutical III, IV
UEG Gas Industry

III, IV, Diploma, Advanced Diploma

SHB Hairdressing and Beauty Services III, IV
ICT Information and Communications Technology II, III, IV
MSL Laboratory Operations II, III, IV, Diploma, Advanced Diploma
LGA Local Government (other than Operational Works Certificate II) II, III, IV
MSA Manufacturing II, III, IV, Diploma, Advanced Diploma
MSM Manufacturing II, III, IV, Diploma, Advanced Diploma
MAR Maritime II, III
MEM Metal/Manufacturing and Engineering (Technical) II, III, IV, Diploma, Advanced Diploma
NWP National Water III, IV
PMB Plastics, Rubber and Cablemaking III, IV
PUA Public Safety III
PSP Public Sector II, III, IV, Diploma
PPM Pulp and Paper Manufacturing Industry III
RII Resources and Infrastructure Industry II, III, IV, Diploma, Advanced Diploma
SIR Retail Services III, IV
MSS Sustainability III, IV, Diploma
MST Textiles, Clothing and Footwear III, IV
SIT Tourism, Travel and Hospitality II, III, IV, Diploma
UET Transmission, Distribution and Rail Sector II, III, IV, Diploma, Advanced Diploma
TLI Transport and Logistics III, IV, Diploma

*The training package code is the first three letters of the traineeship qualification (the National Qualification Code) as recorded in the Apprenticeship/Traineeship Training Contract, for example SHB30115 Certificate III in Beauty Services.

Industry/Skill Level B

Code Training Package AQF Certificate Level
ACM Animal Care and Management II, III, IV
AMP Australian Meat Processing II, III, IV, Diploma
AUR Automotive Retail, Service and Repair II, III, IV, Diploma
AUM Automotive Manufacturing II, III
CUA Creative Arts and Culture II, III, IV
SFL Floristry II
FBP Food, Beverage and Pharmaceutical II
FWP Forest and Wood Products II, III, IV, Diploma
MSF Furnishing II, III, IV
UEG Gas Industry II
SHB Hairdressing and Beauty Services II
HLT Health II, III, IV, Diploma
LGA Local Government (Operational Works) II
MEM Metal/Manufacturing and Engineering (Production) II, III, IV, Diploma, Advanced Diploma
NWP National Water II
PMB Plastics, Rubber and Cablemaking II
ICP Printing and Graphic Arts II, III
CPP Property Services II, III, IV, Diploma
PUA Public Safety II
PPM Pulp and Paper Manufacturing Industry II
RII Resources and Infrastructure Industry I
SIR Retail Services II
SIS Sport, Fitness and Recreation II, III, IV
MST Textiles, Clothing and Footwear II
TLI Transport and Logistics II

*The training package code is the first three letters of the traineeship qualification (the National Qualification Code) as recorded in the Apprenticeship/Traineeship Training Contract, for example SHB30115 Certificate III in Beauty Services

Industry/Skill Level C

Code Training Package AQF Certificate Level
AHC Agriculture, Horticulture and Conservation and Land Management II, III, IV
SIF Funeral Services III, IV
RGR Racing and Breeding II, III, IV
SFI Seafood Industry II, III, IV

*The training package code is the first three letters of the traineeship qualification (the National Qualification Code) as recorded in the Apprenticeship/Traineeship Training Contract, for example SHB30115 Certificate III in Beauty Services

Visit the Department of Training and Workforce Development Apprenticeship Office website for further information about traineeshipswww.dtwd.wa.gov.au/apprenticeship-office

 

Record keeping

All state system employers are legally required to keep employment records that detail time worked, leave taken and pay received by employees.

Learn more on the Employment records - Employer obligations page

 

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