When it comes to the biggest and most important sectors of Australia’s economy, the requirements for entry are stringent. This rings especially true when considering that to reach the upper echelons of these industries takes considerable time and effort. Much of this time and effort is spent on gaining the necessary qualifications to enter the industry. And why else would this not be the case if we demand professionals of the highest quality?
Australia’s educational standards are centred around the Australian Qualifications Framework, which specifies the standard for qualifications in the country. Within the Australian Qualifications Framework is 10 levels beginning with Certificate I and ending with Doctoral (PHD). Whilst these levels are filled with courses in different areas, you do not necessarily have to progress through each level to reach a certain level of expertise that leads to employment opportunities. The truth is that it ultimately depends on the specific area of work you are looking at for employment. For example, many areas require a bachelor’s degree to obtain a starting job within their respective industry, but a significant amount of other areas might only need a Certificate IV.
One such industry that is also dependent on the Australian Qualifications Framework is the building and construction industry. As it is one of the largest in Australia, the link between construction and strong educational backgrounds is quite strongly correlated. When an industry has a large influence on economic growth in Australia, it only makes sense that the best professionals are hired who have undergone all the necessary educational requirements in order to meet these expectations of positive economic outcomes.
A point of contention, or perhaps implication that is commonly considered is time. How long do courses take to complete? Truthfully, it ultimately depends on how long you intend to study to meet your goals.
The Australian Qualifications Framework is not necessarily the only part of education in each and every industry. Many areas of work have extra requirements that must be fulfilled in order to be fit for employment. For instance, there is the Chartered Accountants (CA) program in Accounting and Finance that most professionals in this line of work are expected to have completed.
But what does building and construction have that signifies its reliance on extra education? This is known as the construction induction training course. The construction induction training course, also known as the white card course, is a condition or requirement that must be satisfied by every individual in the construction industry. On completion of the course, you are issued with a white card. This card essentially allows you to enter and/or perform activities on a construction site legally. Without a white card, you are not allowed to enter a construction site at all.
The ease at which a white card can be obtained is reflected in the fact that it is universal. Previously, each state had its own construction induction training course and issued their own cards, which all were different colours. Now, there is only one card for the entire country.
So where can you obtain a white card?
You can receive a white card by completing the construction induction training course with a registered training organisation (RTO). RTO’s provide vocational education and training services. You may be of the opinion that an RTO is just any other ordinary organisation, however this is far from the case. RTO’s are legally recognised by the appropriate regulators which allows them to offer training and qualifications to aspiring students. WorkSafe Victoria, a statutory authority of the Victorian Government and the primary body for managing and enforcing workplace safety, outlines every registered training organisation that you can complete a white card training course with on their website.
Some people are tempted to complete a white card course with an non-approved organisation. If you complete the white card course through an organisation not registered with WorkSafe Victoria, you will unfortunately not be issued with a white card. There is logic behind this, which is to drastically mitigate any risk that arises from employment.
Because construction is concerned with the building of infrastructure and other related areas, occupational health and safety is one of, if not the most important facet that all professionals must be compliant with. If there is even one part of a piece of infrastructure not completed correctly, it can threaten the safety of people who take advantage of it. The white card course’s purpose is to make sure every person working within the industry recognises standard procedure for preventing risk and hazards.
A question that could be asked, based on all this information, is how long it might take to complete a construction induction training course? Considering how important it is to the process of becoming a professional in building and construction, you might assume that it takes quite a bit of time to complete.
This presumption could not be further from the truth. In actuality, the white card course only takes 1 day. No one can be begrudged for questioning the length of the course, and why it only lasts a short amount of time.
This can be attributed to a variety of factors. Firstly, the course has been designed to cater to a wide range of people. The barrier of entry to take the course is virtually non-existent, and serves as a gateway for people to begin their construction journey. Hence, the content is not extensive and long-lasting.
Another factor is the content itself. The construction induction training course primarily focuses on the common safety requirements for construction sites across Victoria. A few of the learning objectives you will encounter include but are not limited to:
- The process for identifying hazards
- The process for reporting safety concerns seen on worksites
- The steps of action required to mitigate risks and potential hazards which can cause accidents or injuries
- The proper methods to responding to incidents on construction worksites related to worker health and safety
Whilst occupational health and safety is a topic of great importance that demands attentiveness, it does not discount the fact that completing the course is relatively simple, which reflects the time taken to finish it.
Something to remember when looking for organisations to register with to complete the construction induction training course is that many non-approved organisations can be misleading in their advertising. In terms of time, they could suggest that you could complete the course in less than 6 hours, which is impossible. This is a pitfall that should be avoided when looking for RTO’s to take the course with.
To ensure you are undertaking the correct course, you should understand that the course code (or unit of competency) offered is known as CPCCWHS1001 – prepare to work safely in the construction industry. By knowing this, you conveniently save time by verifying that you are paying the correct fee with an organisation recognised by WorkSafe Victoria.
The white card course is relatively simple to complete, and this is reflected in the time taken to complete it. By completing it with an RTO acknowledged by WorkSafe Victoria, you are ensuring that your building and construction journey starts on a positive note.
Parker Brent is an accredited RTO provider of the construction induction training course, as well as courses in building and construction. For more details, enquire here.