Non-completers in industry training
This project aims to explore the factors that are associated with apprentices and industry trainees at levels 3 and 4 not completing their qualification.
About this project
The Industry Training Federation (ITF) and a consortium of all 12 industry training organisations (ITO) explored the reasons why some industry trainees do not complete their qualifications.
One hundred and fourteen non-completing industry trainees and apprentices were interviewed about their reasons for and the factors that contributed to the non-completion of their qualifications.
A literature scan was also undertaken to gain an understanding of the issues associated with non-completion of apprenticeships/workplace qualifications, and to get an understanding of common themes across countries. The literature included research reports, articles and media resources on the perspectives of employers, apprentices/trainees, government agencies and researchers.
- Download the full research report (PDF 2.82MB)
- Download the literature scan (PDF 2.16MB)
- Download the summary of the report (PDF 427KB)
This research concluded that more, although not all, trainees can continue when there are appropriate interventions to deal with the employer, system and trainee factors that impede qualification completion. Largely the interventions recommended from this study relate to employer and system factors, but it is also worth considering the extent to which trainees are willing or able to utilise such interventions.
Conclusions from the interviews
There is scope to increase the qualification completion rates in industry training and many of the potentially effective interventions to do this are relatively simple:
- Employers: show interest in training and learning; have time to train; know how to train; are able to explain what has to be done and how; provide time to practise at work; provide time for bookwork at work.
- ITOs: provide information about qualification requirements, including assessments; provide more materials and assessments that are relevant to the job; provide guidance and support.
- There is a fundamental issue for trainees having to complete self-directed study in their own time, both in terms of the time it takes and in understanding the assessment requirements.
- While 40 percent of trainees expressed disappointment at giving up on their qualification, a similar proportion felt relieved that they had stopped training.
- There is a challenge to the wider industry training system about how to better support employer capability and capacity to provide effective learning environments in the workplace.
Conclusions from the literature scan
Non-completion involves a complex mix of factors. It is the interplay between the system, the employer and the individual trainee that leads to the success or otherwise of workplace-based training. Furthermore:
- Completion matters - for returns to the individual, the employer and government.
- There is a range of factors associated with non-completion and these play out at the system, employer and apprentice/trainee levels.
- No single factor appears to contribute to non-completion. Rather, it is the interplay of factors that results in non-completion, with variation occurring between countries, contexts and industries.
- Adrienne Dawson (project leader), Industry Training Federation
- Jenny Connor, Service IQ
- Blair Morgans, Primary ITO
- Loretta Garrow, Building and Construction ITO
ITO consortium members
Building and Construction ITO, Careerforce, Competenz, Connexis, Eergency Management Qualifications (EMQUAL), Hair and Beauty ITO (HITO), NZ Motor ITO (MITO), NZ Marine, Primary ITO, Service IQ, Skills Active, The Skills Organisation.
Ako Aotearoa $53,000 (excl. GST)
ITF and ITO consortium members $78,675 (excl. GST)
Launched: Amora Hotel, 18 October 2016
- Alkema, A. (2016). Literature Scan: The reasons for the non-completion of apprenticeships and traineeships in industry training organisations. Wellington: Ako Aotearoa.
- Alkema, A., McDonald, H., Murray, N., (2016). Research Report. Learning, life and work: Understanding non-completion of industry qualifications. Wellington: Ako Aotearoa.
- Industry Training Federation (2016). Summary. Learning, life and work: Understanding non-completion of industry qualifications. Wellington: Ako Aotearoa.
The report from this project is published under the Creative Commons 3.0 New Zealand Attribution Non-commercial Share Alike Licence (BY-NC-SA). Under this licence you are free to copy, distribute, display and perform the work as well as to remix, tweak, and build upon this work non-commercially, as long as you credit the author/s and license your new creations under the identical terms.