Starting your traineeship or apprenticeship?
Always expect direct supervision at the start.
This is an important standard requirement to ensure that you and everyone else in the workplace is kept safe, and it applies to all trainees and apprentices the same.
Your employer will carry out a risk assessment to decide your ‘level of risk’.
The level of risk will depend on the type of work you’re going to be doing, the equipment you’ll use, and a range of other factors.
Your employer will use this risk assessment to decide what level of supervision is going to be right for you.
Your employer should comply with the South Australian Skills Standards (Standard 5 refers to supervision).
Types of supervision
Direct supervision is when your employer closely oversees all your work.
Direct supervision is the standard and can only be changed if your employer can show that you’ve been assessed and they have decided you can work under indirect supervision for a specific task.
At high school or under 18?
Your supervision will always be direct, unless a risk assessment decides you don’t need this.
Indirect supervision means your employer (or supervisor) is allowed to temporarily leave you to work on your own but still needs to plan, discuss tasks, observe and check in, as well as checking your tasks for quality and safety.
During indirect supervision, your employer (or supervisor) must remain in contact with you so that if you run into a problem or need to clarify instructions or process, that additional support and guidance is there.
Your employer (or supervisor) must keep a record of the assessment they made to decide that indirect supervision was right for you for this task.
Remote supervision is where your supervisor is not physically based at the site where you work.
This means they are always available and are supervising you, but they are in a separate location. Remote supervision still needs to be consistent.
Remote supervision cannot occur without the prior written approval of the South Australian Skills Commission.
|Supervision level rating||Maximum supervision ratio|
|High||1:3 - A single supervisor may not supervise any more than 3 apprentices or trainees at one time.|
|Medium||1:6 - A single supervisor may not supervise any more than 6 apprentices or trainees at any one time.|
|Low||1:10 - A single supervisor may not supervise any more than 10 apprentices or trainees at any one time.|
When supervising apprentices or trainees requiring different supervision levels, your employer must apply the supervision ratio for the highest level.
In some circumstances your employer will be able to obtain written permission from the South Australian Skills Commission to supervise additional apprentices or trainees.
As a trainee or apprentice, you should always feel safe at work.
SafeWork SA is South Australia’s workplace health and safety regulator and can tell you everything you need to know about safety at work during your traineeship or apprenticeship.
If you have any workplace safety questions or are concerned for your safety, speak to SafeWork SA.