Apprentice Connect program - FAQ

Apprentice Connect Program - FAQ

What is the Apprentice Connect Program?

The Apprentice Connect Program (ACP) is an online management platform, developed by MRAEL Group to effectively and efficiently manage relationships with apprentices, trainees and Partner Organisations. The ACP will enable apprentices, trainees and Partner Organisation to interact with MRAEL through new and exciting technology.

How does the ACP work?

The ACP has its own dedicated Apprentice Support Centre (ASC). The ASC is staffed by apprenticeships and traineeship experts who will provide all of the assistance associated with traditional group training services but with great efficiency and effective communication methods.

The ASC staff will maintain regular contact with participants of the ACP to ensure adequate training progression is achieved. ASC staff will conduct training record book checks, performance appraisals and provide assistance and mentoring to Partner Organisations, apprentices and trainees.

What are the benefits of the ACP?

Through the use of innovative technologies, the ACP is able to provide a quality apprentice management experience to both Partner Organisations and apprentices and trainees. Some of the benefits of the ACP include:

  • Direct access to MRAEL’s apprentice management experts through the Apprentice Support Centre.
  • The use of an MRAEL email account for apprentices and trainees, thus streamlining communication.
  • A secure login for each apprentice and trainee to an ‘Apprentice Portal’ to access on demand, personalised apprenticeship data relating to employment, training progress and payroll details.
  • The option for Partner Organisations to approve and submit apprentice and trainee timesheets through MRAEL’s new electronic timesheet system, AnyTime.
  • Access to cloud storage, as well as the ability to replace the current hard copy Training Record Book with a new cloud based training record.
  • Improved apprentice management opportunities for Partner Organisations in rural and remote locations.

The ACP provides Partner Organisations with the security of traditional group training services and the ability to give apprentices and trainees a significantly improved overall experience throughout the duration of their apprenticeship or traineeship.

The virtual approach of the ACP not only provides efficiencies and benefits from a service delivery perspective, but also the opportunity to enable representation across a wider geographical footprint, meaning that additional apprenticeship and traineeship opportunities could be created in rural and remote areas where they may not have otherwise existed through traditional apprentice management techniques. MRAEL firmly believes that these kinds of opportunities will contribute to the continued growth of a sustainable skilled workforce for the future.

What is the cost of the ACP?

As a result of the innovative technologies that the ACP employs, MRAEL is able to offer the program to Partner Organisations with no management fee. This means that Partner Organisations can access and utilise MRAEL’s best practice apprentice management expertise and techniques with no added investment to the statutory costs of employing an apprentice or trainee.

The ACP is the ideal program to assist employers in offsetting the additional expenses that may be incurred as a result of the minimum wage increase for apprentices and trainees coming into effect from January 1, 2014. MRAEL understands that decisions such as the Fair Work Commission’s to increase minimum award wages for apprentice and trainees often highlight the pressures that employers face in finding a sustainable balance between developing a skilled workforce for the future and operating a cost efficient business. The ACP will assist employers in being able to continue to build their workforce with no added financial pressure.

What areas is the ACP available?

The virtual nature of the ACP means that it can be utilised by Partner Organisations in any geographical location.

One of the major benefits of the ACP is that it provides Partner Organisations located in rural or remote geographical locations with increased accessibility to traditional group training services with a greater focus on achieving increased operating efficiencies and a cost effective approach. The ACP will provide MRAEL with greater opportunities to capably service Partner Organisations located in regional and remote areas with the same service delivery as Partner Organisations located in metropolitan areas.

What industries and trades is the ACP available to?

The ACP is available to Partner Organisations, apprentices and trainees across all industries and trades.

I have existing apprentices/trainees with MRAEL; can I convert them to the ACP?

The ACP is currently only available to apprentices and trainees who commence on or after January 1, 2014. Partner Organisations who have existing apprentices and trainees with MRAEL’s Apprentice Employment Program (AEP) or Apprentice Management Program (AMP) are unfortunately not able to convert those apprentices or trainees to the ACP at this time. However, Partner Organisations, both those who are new to MRAEL’s services and those who already work with MRAEL, are able to commence new apprentices and trainees from January 1, 2014 using the ACP.

What happens if our business decides that ACP is not suitable for us?

MRAEL understands that the operating requirements of a Partner Organisation may change from time to time. If a Partner Organisation determines that the ACP is not suitable to their business requirements, MRAEL can offer a range of traditional group training services that may be more suited.

If a Partner Organisation decides to withdraw from the ACP within six months of the commencement of the apprentice or trainee and does not transition to one of MRAEL’s alternative apprentice management services, a $1,500.00 fee will be payable to MRAEL upon withdrawal from the program.

Is further information available?

To obtain further information about the ACP and how it could work for your business, contact the MRAEL Support Centre today on 1300 4 MRAEL (1300 467 235).

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