Why it pays to put yourself in the spotlight

Putting yourself in the spotlight can be a tricky thing to do. But when you apply for a WA Training Award, you are opening a door to a world of opportunity and a great personal and professional development experience.

Opportunity to reflect on your achievements

The WA Training Awards offers the unique opportunity to reflect on what you’ve achieved during your training and how that has broadened your career prospects.

As I was writing out the application, I kept coming up with more and more stuff to write about. By the end I had pages upon pages to send in, looking over it I thought “wow”. You don’t realise how much you have accomplished until you take the time to write it down.” Taylor Wood, WA School Based Apprentice of the Year 2014

Taylor Wood at WA Training Awards 2014

Taylor Wood accepting her award at the WA Training Awards 2014 Presentation Dinner

Network with like-minded individuals

Meeting other Award applicants who have the same passion for training that you do can open up opportunities for success later on. You might network with people you’d like to work with on a project in the future, discover a new way of doing something or make some valuable contacts.

“This was such an incredible opportunity to be able to meet other like-minded people and develop myself both professionally and personally.” Emma Hay, WA Trainee of the Year 2014

Emma Hay at Australian Training Awards

Emma Hay after receiving Australian Apprentice (Trainee) of the Year 2014 Runner up at the Australian Training Awards 2014 in Adelaide

$5000 study grant to advance your career

Winners of the WA Training Awards individual categories receive a $5000 study grant to help kick start your career or further your training. Previous winners have used this to pay for training fees, purchase tools or equipment to help with their work and even for the start-up costs to establish their own business. Whatever your goals, winning a WA Training Award can help you get there.

Opportunity to represent WA at the Australian Training Awards

WA winners in eligible categories will represent the State at the Australian Training Awards in Hobart this November. Not only will you have the opportunity to meet the other state and territory training awards winners, as well as participating in some great professional development activities, you’ll be recognised as one of the country’s best in your field.

“Attending the Australian Training Awards in Adelaide was another fantastic opportunity to meet more outstanding individuals and mentors.” Gino Auriemma, WA Vocational Student of the Year 2014

Gino Auriemma (centre) with wife Delilah (left) and Kate Cross (right) Australian Vocatonal Student of the Year 2013.

Gino Auriemma (centre) with wife Delilah (left) and Kate Cross (right) Australian Vocatonal Student of the Year 2013.

Professional/personal development

The WA Training Awards process is a fantastic development opportunity for individuals, both professionally and personally.

“Not only the win, but every part of the journey has had an exponential impact on my personal development. I have come to better understand goal setting, recognising achievement, gratitude, self-confidence and acceptance.” Geoff Franklin, WA Apprentice of the Year 2014

Geoff Franklin accepting his Award at the WA Training Awards 2014 Presentation Dinner

Geoff Franklin accepting his Award at the WA Training Awards 2014 Presentation Dinner

Opening the door to opportunity

Employers value people who use their initiative and strive to achieve greatness. Applying for the WA Training Awards could result in many opportunities for you.

“If you’ve completed a VET course, see the WA Training Awards as an opportunity you didn’t have before. Use it as a means to develop and grow professionally and personally. You just don’t know where it’s going to take you – the possibilities are endless if you are willing to take the chance.” Regina Richardson, WA Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Student of the Year 2014

Regina Richardson after winning WA Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Student of the Year 2014

Regina Richardson after winning WA Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Student of the Year 2014

Put yourself in the spotlight. Apply for the WA Training Awards today!

Visit our website for information on how to put together an award winning application.

Building your industry and VET sector knowledge

Part of the selection criteria for individual applicants refers to your knowledge of industry trends and the vocational education and training system and how you can be an effective ambassador for both.

It’s important to do your research to better understand what’s happening in your industry and the broader VET sector in addressing these criteria.

So how can you build your knowledge in these areas?

Talk to your lecturers/employer

This is a great place to start. Most VET lecturers started out in industry before becoming a lecturer and may have many years of experience in the workplace, giving them the added perspective of training people for industry.

They will have first-hand knowledge of current trends as it is part of their job to keep abreast of changes in technology, rules and regulations. This helps them to make sure their students are industry-ready.

Your employer may also be able to give you information on what is happening in your industry from a first-hand perspective, and be able to tell you what they do to keep up with progress or cope with change to ensure the success of their business.

It never hurts to ask questions and not only does it show interest in your industry, but your willingness to learn more. Remember, your lecturer or employer probably started out just like you and would be happy to share their experiences.

chefs in training

Your industry training council

Training councils provide information and advice on industry workforce development and training needs, and make recommendations to support those needs.

There are 10 training councils in WA, covering every industry imaginable, and they each have a wide network of employers, employees, training providers and industry organisations that they interact with.

Each of the training councils produces an Industry workforce development plan which profiles current industry analysis and trends.

Most importantly, the training councils will be shortlisting your application (school based apprentice, trainee, vocational student and apprentice categories only) so it pays to make contact and get their advice on industry trends and knowledge.

hairdresser in training

Skilling WA

Skilling WA – A workforce development plan for Western Australia is a comprehensive State Government plan which aims to build, attract and retain a responsive, flexible and diverse workforce for Western Australia.

Updated with a second edition in 2014, this document outlines the strategic direction of workforce planning and development in WA and is available from the Department website.

The plan contains useful statistics and outlines the State Government’s key areas of focus based around five strategic goals. Each of these have priority actions, which support the State Government’s overall aim of building the economic and community development needs of Western Australia.

Department of Training and Workforce Development website

The Department website contains more useful information than you can poke a stick at! There are latest news items and links to publications produced by the Department, such as the State Priority Occupation List and Regional workforce development plans. Visit the Workforce planning and development section for comprehensive information on workforce trends and the State’s workforce needs. There are also reviews, studies and reports to read and links to the Department’s many sub-sites, including ApprentiCentre and Career Centre. It’s a mine of information!

Mechanic and trainer

Your knowledge of your industry and the VET sector, could be the difference between being shortlisted and not being shortlisted for your category, so it’s important to do your research. To apply for a WA Training Award today, visit our website for everything you need.

Why you should put your organisation in the spotlight

There are many benefits that come from being a part of the WA Training Awards – opportunities can present themselves from the moment you make the decision to apply.

Whether you support staff development through training opportunities, develop innovative training initiatives or operate at the coalface by offering training programs for students, your contribution to the training sector can be recognised and rewarded.

Opportunity to reflect on successes

Previous entrants have learned that the application process itself offers the unique chance for them to reflect on their achievements in the past year while also looking closely at the services and programs they provide.

For Fairbridge Western Australia, WA Training Initiative 2014 winner, simply completing the application was valuable.

“It really makes you think about what you are doing and gives you a really good opportunity to review your product.” Brett Hawthorne, Fairbirdge Western Australia

Fairbridge WA Inc at the WA Training Awards 2014

Fairbridge WA Inc at the WA Training Awards 2014

Endorsement of programs and your position in the market

There are also many advantages that come with being recognised as a finalist or winner. It is an endorsement of the programs your organisation has developed and is something that will set you apart from your competitors.

For example, being named the WA International Training Provider of the Year 2014 has given Central Institute of Technology a competitive edge.

“Australia is one of the most popular destinations for international students, so the market to attract those students is very competitive. Students look for prestige in a training provider so having the training award logo attached to your marketing material is a huge advantage.” Neil Fernandes, Central Institute of Technology

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Central Institute of Technology went on to be named Australian International Training Provider 2014 at the Australian Training Awards.

For NECA College of Electrical Training, their win reaffirmed their belief that the professionalism, dedication and commitment of their staff was second to none.

“Winning the WA Large Training Provider of the Year 2014 has solidified our position and strengthening stakeholder relationships.” Carl Copeland, NECA College of Electrical Training

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NECA College of Electrical Training was named WA Small Training Provider of the Year 2010 – four years later they were awarded WA Large Training Provider of the Year 2014.

New partnerships and possibilities

As an ambassador for your industry sector, winning an Award can lead to new possibilities and partnerships through networking opportunities. And this networking can start with the presentation dinner.

For Marr Mooditj Training Inc, WA Small Training Provider of the Year 2014 the event was a great chance to meet with old friends and make new ones, while also allowing them to see first-hand the level of commitment from businesses to training their staff.

“Seeing the way that partnerships have developed over the years (between organisations) opened our eyes to new opportunities.” Margaret Quartermaine, Marr Moodtij Training Inc

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Marr Mooditj Training Inc receiving their award at the WA Training Awards 2014.

$8000 cash/prize

Then there’s the prize money awarded to category winners, which has allowed organisations to provide new opportunities or to expand on their existing services.

Central Institute’s prize money has boosted a new scholarship program it created for international students, while Fairbridge Western Australia invested its prize money into their Youth Initiatives Fund to support programs for youth at risk.

Apply today!

There are six WA Training Awards categories for organisations. Download an application guide for your chosen category and start your application today to put yourself in the spotlight and reap the rewards.

What are the judges looking for?

Here’s a question we get asked a lot and it’s a good question to ask.

Selecting a winner from a group of the State’s best is never an easy task. So what do the judges look for?

judging panel cartoon

Judges are looking for an individual or an organisation who stands out in their field and will be a great ambassador for training in Western Australia. They look for someone who will be competitive nationally if this person/organisation is eligible to represent Western Australia at the Australian Training Awards.

When preparing your responses to the selection criteria, ensure that you clearly address each selection criteria and all of the required sub-criteria as the judges will be scoring your application against them.

 “Take the time to address the selection criteria properly. It can be very difficult for panel judges to rate an application that hasn’t provided sufficient responses for each of the selection criteria.”

Kathy Hoare, previous judge

Individual applicants

  • Dedication – Being dedicated to your study, motivated to succeed and demonstrating a good work and study ethic.
  • Impact – Judges want to know about the impact your training has had on you professionally and personally. Show them how it has provided new career opportunities, helped overcome difficult life circumstances or provided inspiration to others.
  • Communication – Good communication skills and presentation skills are paramount. The judges will be looking for someone who is well prepared, dressed appropriately and able to listen and respond confidently.
  • Goals – Clear goals and sense of purpose with realistic ambitions and career planning.
  • Authenticity – Show that you are a sincere and genuine person who values your training.
  • Passion – Demonstrate that you are passionate about your industry and training.

“Write your application in first person, keep it professional and review and edit your application to eliminate mistakes or have another person do this for you.”

Yvette Drager, previous judge

Organisation applicants

  • Uniqueness – What is it about your organisation/initiative that makes it unique? Show the judges qualitative data and other evidence that sets your organisation/program apart from others.
  • Client focus – Demonstrate your organisation’s understanding of its clients and their needs.
  • Continuous improvement – Detailed processes for continuous improvement demonstrate an organisation’s passion and dedication to excellence in delivery.
  • Impact – Show the judges the impact your organisation/program has had on the lives of your clients and what broader application there may be locally or nationally for this idea/way of working.

“Make sure you include specific examples of when you have done something during your training/employment or how you’ve demonstrated a skill. For example if the criterion refers to say, your level of self-reliance and resilience in times of challenge, don’t just state that you work well in times of challenge, we want you to recount a time of challenge in your training/workplace, how you dealt with that/those particular challenges and the result.”

Tanya Servaas, previous judge

While preparing your application for the WA Training Awards or thinking about your interview/site visit, it’s a good idea to keep these things in mind. To submit your application for this year’s Awards, visit our website for instructions on how to enter and tools to help you along the way.