Nationally Recognised Training

Based at Holden Hill, South Australia, FCTA is registered with the Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA) RTO Code 40057 and for training with the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB). We offer the same training qualifications in Bricklaying, Solid Plastering, Wall & Ceiling Lining and Tiling as any TAFE.

The difference is that FCTA offers flexible timing and training for both apprentices and people seeking to gain work in the building industry.

Why does it need to be so difficult to calculate apprentice wages?

Posted on 24 June, 2015 | Categorised as Apprenticeships, Industry News

This is one of the top 5 questions I get asked by employers. How much do I have to pay my apprentice? Those intrepid employers who do call Fairwork often find themselves on hold for unreasonably long times. Thats the FCTA difference, we get no funding to assist on these matters, but we know how annoying it is to have to call 4 different places to work out how to sign up an apprentice and work out their rates. Hopefully this helps eliminate some phone rage, and allows builders to reduce the time spent on administration.

After a mere 5 hours on the Fairwork website  I have calculated out the pay rates for junior apprentices. Thats apprentices under 21 when they start. There are a few differences in rates, for instance a 1st year apprentice in any trade who has completed year 12 gets paid an extra 5% in the first year. Bricklayers get paid more than Tilers, Solid Plasterers and Wall & Ceiling Liners, so I have broken the information up into bricklaying apprentice rates, and non bricklaying apprentice rates. I hope this makes things easier. Just keep in mind these rates are correct as of 24/06/2015, and can be used as a guide only as there are a series of assumptions that go into producing the pay rates.

Bricklaying apprentice rates:

With year 12 completion: Junior Bricklayer yr1&2  & Junior Yr3Yr4 Bricklayer 

Without year 12 completion: Junior Yr1yr2 Bricklayer  & Junior Yr3Yr4 Bricklayer 

Tilers, Solid Plasterers & Wall & Ceiling Liners: 

With year 12 completion: Junior Non Brick yr1yr2 apprentice & Junior Non Brick Yr3yr4 

Without year 12 completion: Junior Non Brick Yr1Yr2  & Junior Non Brick Yr3Yr4

For information on mature apprentice rates, email

Cert II Construction Pre-Apprenticeship Course Starts 28th April 2015

Posted on 07 April, 2015 | Categorised as Applications, Courses, Pre-Apprenticeship, Skills for All
CITB Pre-apprentice students at work

Pre-apprentice students at work

Our next Cert II Construction (CPC20112) course starts on Tuesday 28th April. The course runs for 10 weeks Tuesday – Friday at 15 Jacobsen Crs, Holden Hill. This course is often referred to as a ‘pre-apprenticeship’ course as there are employers seeking this qualification to hire apprentices. A variety of trades are covered during the 10 weeks including, bricklaying, tiling, solid plastering, concreting, scaffolding and wall & ceiling lining (on request). Students will focus on developing practical skills. There is however some book work required, and our trainers are here to assist people with any reading or writing issues. The course is currently covered by Skills for All funding for eligible students, to check your eligibility, click here.

Next Contractors Licence Course Runs On 18th -19th April 2015 & 2nd – 3rd May 2015

Posted on 04 April, 2015 | Categorised as CITB Courses, Courses, Licencing


The SA Contractors Licence course is becoming more and more popular. In South Australia tradies are required to complete 2 small business units before the can apply for a licence, visit for more information. We run the course over 2 weekends, taking a 1 week break inbetween so you can spend some time with family!

Our course is run by a qualified builder with extensive knowledge of the Building Code of Australia. Remember, without a contractors licence, customer who refuse to pay cannot be forced to!

The course costs $450 for CITB construction industry workers, or $950 for people ineligible for a CITB number. Visit to find out more about how to apply for an industry training card.

To book your place email or call 83675615. You can pay online here 

Why having a contractors or trade builders licence is essential in SA.

918534-conmanDid you know that customers can refuse to pay tradies who are unlicensed? Tradies are also at risk of fines up to $20,000 for working without a licence. I’ve gone through the online process of applying for a tradies contractors license, and it isn’t as difficult as it seems! We also run the Contractors Licence Course which is required to get a licence.

The process to apply for a licence can seem a little overwhelming, but there is help available. This week I called up the government department that looks after licensing to discuss some particular issues we weren’t sure about. A big thanks to Margret for answering my many questions!

Firstly, the name of the government department that manages trades licensing is now called “Consumer & Business Services” ( in the past it was usually referred to as OCBA. Along with a new name, there is a new website with lots of helpful information and even an online application process.

Essentially there are 2 types of tradies who go for their licence. Those that have completed the traditional style apprenticeship, and those that have worked in the industry as labourers gradually gaining more skills in particular trades.

Apprentices usually get a more streamlined application, but not always! Labourers who have not completed an apprenticeship are more likely to be asked to attend a technical interview. Feedback we’ve had from applicants is that the interviewer will generally ask them questions about a typical days work, seeking clarification on OHS/ WHS issues, materials used and Australia Standards. The technical interview can go in a different direction if the person interviewing you thinks there is a potential issue. Examples include not being aware of state based requirements for some specific building activities. So its worth reviewing Australian Standards and South Australian Ministerial Specifications.

The application costs around $390, this is just for the contractors licence in a specified trade. You will be required to select which trade or trades you want on your licence. In SA it is also a requirement to complete 2 business units. I recently completed these myself, and found it really informative. One of the units is in business law. This is how I found out  that customer can refuse unlicensed tradies payment! The second unit is in business finance. It takes you through how to read and understand your businesses finances, even if you have an accountant handle it for you.

A police check is required, along with a certificate of eligibility for Building Indemnity Insurance. If you plan on working on your own, you’ll also need to apply for a supervisors licence, that costs around another $110. If you are working with someone else who already has a supervisors licence, you can nominate them on your application.

It seems like a lot of money in fees, but there is growing awareness in the community about licencing, and many customers will go online to check. A little bit of cost upfront, could see you avoid a fine, but more importantly help you grow your business.

As always, if you’re stuck, give us a call and arrange a time to catch up! More information is available at

Jim Baff Scholarship – all 2015 places filled

Posted on 25 March, 2015 | Categorised as Courses, Fees, Industry News, Skills for All

dad smilingWe have had an enormous response to the Jim Baff Scholarship programme. We have filled up all the places for this year and we have a lengthy waitlist in case of cancellations. We plan to launch a crowd sourcing funding campaign later in the year to try to meet demand. So far we have trained 8 students at Cert II and Cert III levels. For asylum seekers this allows them to be work ready for when their visa status is changed to allow them to work. For existing citizens the programme has allowed them to increase the breadth of their experience and provide them with the opportunity to expand their future businesses. If you are interested about the programme email

The ONE Thing You Now Need To Do To Be Eligible For The CITB Apprentice Incentive Payments

Posted on 18 March, 2015 | Categorised as Apprenticeships, CITB Courses, Industry News

9920_MY_PROFILING_87x130[3]For years the CITB have paid apprentice incentives based on the filling in of an on the job diary. Times are changing and the CITB has updated to a nifty app called “My Profiling”. Apprentices can download the app on their smart phones and enter in the types of tasks they have completed during the week. Its a simple process with images of various tasks like “setting up a job”. Screen Shot 2015-03-18 at 3.45.15 pmThe apprentice then submits their entry for the employer to approve. Employers will soon have their own app to sign off on their apprentices work, but currently they can log onto to approve the entries. Thats it. No more paperwork, just a quick tap on the phone on Friday afternoon. If you have any questions, you can always ask us to give a demonstration. Not much effort required for employers to be eligible to receive $1800 per year from the CITB!


Unique Student Identifier – New Government Requirement To Study

Posted on 13 February, 2015 | Categorised as Applications, CITB Courses, Courses, Pre-Apprenticeship, RPL, Student Updates



From 1 January 2015 all students will be required to have a USI, because…government. This is a requirement for all courses, including the White Card and Contractors Licence courses.

It’s easy…follow these 6 simple steps

STEP 1: Have at least one form of ID ready: Driver’s License, Australian Passport, Medicare Card, Birth Certificate, Visa (with non-Australian Passport), Immigration Card or Citizenship Certificate.

STEP 2: Have your personal contact details ready: Address, email and/or phone number.

STEP 3: Visit and click on ‘Create a USI’.

STEP 4: Agree to the terms and conditions and follow the steps.

STEP 5: Write your unique number down and keep it somewhere handy and safe.

STEP 6: Bring this number with you when you enrol.

Jim Baff Scholarship Award Winner FARHAD GHANBARZADEH

Posted on 06 February, 2015 | Categorised as Industry News

As part of FCTA’s commitment to assisting the Adelaide construction industry, the Jim Baff Scholarship programme offers people who are ineligible for funded training a chance to learn a trade. Screen Shot 2015-02-06 at 3.03.42 pmOur latest graduate is Farhad Ghanbarzadeh. Farhad completed study in all the practical hands on aspects of bricklaying. He is now looking for work in Adelaide. Farhad has an excellent work ethic, recruiting FCTA trainer Phil Sweet to train him on a weekend. On behalf of the team at FCTA we’d like to wish Farhad and his family all the best for the future. If you are interested in hiring, please contact Trisch on 8367 5615 or 0400 597 117.

Certificate II in Construction Course starts Tuesday 3rd February 2015

Posted on 27 January, 2015 | Categorised as Applications, Courses, Pre-Apprenticeship, Student Updates

Screen Shot 2015-01-27 at 11.35.37 amOur popular pre-apprentice starts on Tuesday 3rd February. These courses help people interested in gaining an apprenticeship by giving them experience with the type of projects carried out by tradespeople. The course focuses on training in Bricklaying, Tiling, Solid Plastering, Concreting and Basic Scaffolding.

We have had successful students go on to gain apprenticeships across all trades. FCTA has a strong network of employers currently looking to hire Solid Plastering, and Tiling apprentices. Bricklaying apprenticeships come up on a regular basis, with the trade now seen as a major skills shortage in South Australia.

To arrange to meet with us about the course, call 8367 5615 or email

2014 Apprentice of the year is Nathan Dekker

Posted on 12 December, 2014 | Categorised as Apprenticeships, bricklaying, Student Updates

This years choice for Apprentice of the Year was made easy, as each staff member – from all our trades – recommended Nathan Dekker.

Nathan Dekker

Nathan Dekker

Nathan is 75% through his Cert III in Bricklaying. His work is of high quality. He is normally the first apprentice to arrive in the morning, and the one who creates a great mood amongst everyone. Aside from the trophy, Nathan will receive free training in the 2 small business units required to apply for a contractors license. Nathan has enormous potential for the future. From the team at FCTA – Building Careers, we’d like to wish Nathan and his lovely family a Merry Christmas. We are looking forward to 2015 and working with Nathan again!


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