Skills eFlash #118

Skills eFlash #118

Skills eFlash #118
Date: 10-Jul-2023

In this edition: Skills Forum 2023 Review & Thanks | Consultation on QLD VET Strategy | ABS Second Round of Consultation on ANZSCO Code Reviews Opens (Waste Water or Water Plant Operators included) | Advocacy Works | and much more! 

1. Skills Forum 2023 – Review and Thanks 

A fantastic event supported by over 70 attendees with members, Government Departments and other key stakeholders represented.

Sincere thanks to all our presenters for sharing their presentations around the theme of Hi Vis; raising the profile of the urban water sector. The Forum provided insights into many of the key issues that the industry faces. We sought to provoke thought and foster collaboration across Governments, Stakeholders and jurisdictions in looking for solutions to some of our most complex challenges.

Best practice is, after all, just that – wherever you find it.

For those members that were unable to attend the event, recordings of all presentations are available to view on our website (this page is in the Members Only zone so please log in to view).

2. Consultation on QLD VET Strategy 

Have you used vocational training to get a job, train your staff or help someone achieve their dream career?

The Queensland Government wants all Queenslanders – including employers, industry groups, training providers, schools, job seekers, students, apprentices and trainees - to have their say to inform the state's new vocational education and training (VET) strategy.

The new strategy will guide the government’s investment in training and skills to ensure it delivers the best outcomes for Queensland.

Forums will be held across the state, and a discussion paper and online survey are available here to have your say now.

Consultation closes Friday 18 August 2023.

3. ABS Second Round of Consultation on ANZSCO Code Reviews Opens (Waste Water or Water Plant Operators included) 

The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) opened the second round of consultation for the comprehensive review of ANZSCO on June 15, 2023.

This is an opportunity for stakeholders to make a significant impact by providing feedback on selected occupations, helping shape the quality of Australia’s future occupation and labour market information.

They are particularly interested in understanding what occupations have evolved, been replaced, or changed. Have skill requirements shifted over time? Are there any emerging fields or unique jobs that you believe will shape the future?

A full list of occupations that will be reviewed is here – one of which is 712921 Waste Water or Water Plant Operators.

Access to the consultation hub is here where all relevant information, advice on preparing a submission and the online survey itself can be found. qldwater will make a submission on behalf of members, partnering with other stakeholders in the process.

Member input for the process is welcome at the usual email address:

This round of consultation will close on 11 August 2023.

4. Advocacy Works! Uplift in Higher Level Skills (HLS) funding subsidies announced by DYJESBT 

A little bit of good news to share always goes down well we would hope.

qldwater has been successful, through its work as Industry Skills Advisor to the Department of Youth Justice, Employment, Small Business and Training (DYJESBT previously DESBT), to secure a significant 50% uplift in the level of subsidy available for Cert IV and Diploma qualifications.

These qualifications (particularly Certificate IV) are vitally important in providing pathways for the development of staff. The previous differential between the costs of training and the subsidy provided, was cited by members as a barrier to enrolments.

This change comes about through a combination of price list review work (speaking to Government subsidy levels) and continued, consistent advocacy resulting in:

This reflects calls that members have made in our engagement pieces for some considerable time.

Please continue your engagement and feedback with us so that we can keep advocating to bring about the changes our vital sector needs to see.

5. Water Leadership Program Registrations Open 

Registrations are now open for both the Water Leadership Program and the 2023 Training and Capacity Development Program through the International WaterCentre, based at Griffith University’s Nathan Campus.

Over 300 water leaders from across Australia and New Zealand have graduated from the International WaterCentre’s Water Leadership Program since 2011, creating water sector impact through a wide variety of work including:

  • Climate change adaptation;
  • Paddock to reef modelling to inform Great Barrier Reef policy and planning;
  • Developing low cost technologies for emerging markets;
  • Recognising the depth and value of Indigenous water science;
  • Driving carbon neutrality in wastewater treatment, and;
  • Championing water industry workforce diversity and inclusion nationally.

The next Water Leadership Program (WLP) begins on 1 December 2023. Six scholarships are available - application forms are available here.

The IWC also launched a new, revised and expanded Training and Capacity Development Program for 2023 including three courses focussed on developing different water leadership skills:

  • Team Leadership,
  • Leadership to Address Complex Challenges and
  • Leading with Courage and Compassion.

Other topic areas in the Training and Capacity Development Program include:

  • Water Resilient Communities and Catchment
  • WASH in the Water Cycle
  • Integrated Water Management, Governance and Finance

More information is available here.

6. The Importance of Mental Wellbeing in the Workplace and Beyond 

Continuing to build on the topic raised in the Skills Forum, there are some great free resources available to provide tips and tools which can help identify, manage and mitigate the risks associated with stress, fatigue and so on in the workplace.

We’ll continue to share these with members and add anything we find useful to the Skills Toolbox we are developing.

We would also love members to share resources that they have found valuable with the wider community by sending information and links to so that we can signpost members too.

A free Workplace Stress eBook from WorkPro is available to download here. It contains lots of useful information. Just click on the image of the eBook to download.

Diversity Council Australia also recently completed their State of Mental Health Report. Whilst you need to be a DCA member to access the full report, a useful infographic outlining some key steps and takeaways is accessible here.

7. Jobs & Skills Australia Recruitment Methods (by State) 

While Australian employers use a range of methods to recruit staff, advertising online is the most common method of finding staff. Almost two-thirds of recruiting employers used this method in 2022.

In capital cities, 68% of employers used online job platforms, compared with 53% of regional employers.

Find out more by reading the Recruitment Methods reports for each state and territory here exploring the rise of social media in recruitment across our State.

8. Water Industry Snapshot Report 2022 Update 

Work continues on the 2022 Snapshot Report; we are closing in on publishing our findings and providing the view of our industry workforce across both current survey feedback, and also taking a look back across some different case studies for the first time.

The final draft is with our CEO for input and sign off, after which it will be published.

Please watch our normal communication channels for the report release anticipated very soon!

Upcoming Events 

  • 19-20 July - WIOA Queensland Conference, USQ, Sunshine Coast  
  • 15 August  - AWA North Queensland Conference, Townsville 
  • 5-7 September - qldwater Annual Forum, Toowoomba 
  • 13 September - NSW Water Directorate Annual Forum, Sydney
  • 6 October - qldwater Regional Conference, Mackay
  • 9-10 November - AWA QWater, Brisbane 

Kind Regards,


qldwater is a business unit of IPWEAQ

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