Study proves group training organisations regularly outperform other training providers

A milestone study released today by the National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER) has revealed that group training organisations have ‘substantially higher’ apprenticeship and traineeship completion rates than direct employers in small and medium-sized businesses.

The study titled ‘Completion rates for group training organisations and direct employers: how do they compare?’ compares data from the two main types of apprentice and trainee employers – direct employers and group training organisations (GTOs). It found that apprentices and trainees under GTO arrangements are far more likely to complete their training than directly-employed counterparts.

The point at which the two arrangements divert is that a GTO will match an apprentice to a host business but remain responsible for paying their wages, arranging formal training and assessment, and providing support throughout the duration of the training.

The study concludes that “after accounting for the different demographic profiles of GTO apprentices and trainees and employer size […] GTO completion rates for all apprentices and trainees are substantially higher than for small and medium direct employers.”

This finding is significant to governmental bodies that have invested significantly in training. Higher completion rates signify a healthy return on investment and help to form strong training policies moving forward.

The study also found that the size of the host business and the demographics of the trainees also impact the likelihood of completion.

The profile of GTO apprentices and trainees includes a higher proportion of disadvantaged or ‘high risk’ cohorts commencing apprenticeships and traineeships.

Compared with other employers, apprentices and trainees within GTOs are younger, more likely to be in the trades, more likely to be new to the workforce, and more likely to be Indigenous.

This data is significant when compared to the NCVER finding that some apprentices and trainees were exiting their arrangements due to increased incidence of mental health challenges and an increased number of apprentices and trainees from disadvantaged backgrounds.

The NCVER study confirms Directions Workforce Solutions’ belief that pastoral care, mentoring and support during an arrangement with a host employer are the keys to apprentice and trainee success.

CEO of the National Apprentice Employment Network (NAEN) Ms Dianne Dayhew said that GTOs have been dedicated to making a real difference for the last 40 years. She said it was encouraging to see that impact finally validated by the NCVER research.

Directions Workforce Solutions is a registered Group Training Organisation and charity that has employed thousands of successful apprentices and trainees for over 30 years. Visit to find out more.

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