Apprentice


Musculoskeletal Injuries in Construction are on the Up

Musculoskeletal Injuries in Construction

WorkCover Queensland is advising employers in the construction industry to focus on injury prevention as the industry gears up to take an anticipated end of year 2017 spike in workers’ compensation claims. Kylie Walsh, Customer Experience Manager at WorkCover says data for Construction shows that claims in November 2016 were 33% higher than the number of claims made in November 2015.

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Take Note: Chris Pike – A Bricklayer with a Passion for Restoration

Chris Pike is an interesting bricklayer from the central Victorian town of Dunolly, near Bendigo. He’s a man who’s dedicated to delivering expert repair to old brickwork, for which he’s in high demand. But my guess is he’d take the same pride and care in bricking a new house as he does on restoring an old building.

Chris made the news recently when featured by the Sun Herald in Melbourne and I’m giving his story a second run because I’d like to also applaud Chris for his craftsmanship, on behalf of his industry and to pass on the learning. Chris has restored several of the very old public buildings in Dunolly, built between 1862 and 1884 during the gold mining boom in central Victoria.

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One Good Thing You Did Today …

Training and managing a bricklaying apprentice on the job every day is not easy. The relationship between the employer and the apprentice is built through shared experiences involving trust and commitment.

A bricklayer gave me a tip recently on how to get the best out of the apprentice and build a good relationship.

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Apprentice Pay Increase Emphasizes Need to Train

The Fair Work Ombudsman has released new national pay rates for apprentices effective from 1 July 2015. The increase is 2.5% across the board for all Year levels.

Bricklayers should see this change as an opportunity to focus on training their apprentices on all facets of the trade as set out in the training package. The sooner the apprentice gains the necessary skills of bricklaying, the sooner the employer will benefit from improved productivity on the job.

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If Music Be the Food of Brickies…

The picture above is of a performing arts school in Sydney where the design of the brickwork replicates a music sound wave.

Brickies can only look at this work and wonder what radio station they were on when they built that? I must say I like it. Bricklaying is a trade where you can listen to music all day. Usually the apprentice gets no say in what is listened to on site though, as’ what the boss says’, goes!

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The Crime of No, or Delaying Trowel Time

If you have an apprentice bricklayer in your team, we say you’ve got someone pretty special and we want to see him complete his time and become a highly skilled, qualified tradesman.

You don’t need a Diploma in Human Resources to know that it is damn hard at the moment to attract young people into an apprenticeship in our colourful trade of bricklaying but we’re not alone. Motor trades, hairdressing and butchery trades, for example, have their own challenges. I believe a key reason is the breadth of choices on offer to today’s school leavers – it’s immense! It seems there’s a new training organisation opening every day offering kids a bright imaginable future if they just give them their time and lots of money – even if there’s really no job at the end!

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The Young Wise Owl Should Buy a Trowel

We’ve banged on a bit about trowel time lately and how a poor apprentice will leave the excellent trade of bricklaying simply because his boss is not giving him time on a trowel. But is it always the boss’s fault?

If you want to get more trowel time at work, you’ll need to take the bull by the horn, so to speak.

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National Apprentice Pay Rates Started This Week

Individual trade apprentice pay rates under the Modern Award, across all States of Australia, came into line on 1 July 2014 with the transitional arrangement period now completed.

Employers and apprentices should check the current rates at the Fair Work Ombudsman site where a new, improved website tool “PayCheck Plus” provides access to pay rates for employers and apprentices across all trades.

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Interested in trying Bricklaying? Then please contact us on 1300 30 44 77