Building & Construction is Australia's third-largest industry, and employs approximately 9% of the country's total workforce in full time and part time capacity. It is forecast that this number will continue to grow for the foreseeable future. Individuals who wish to work as builders in Australia, must obtain trade licensing for the relevant state. Continue reading to find out how to obtain an Australian Builders Licence for your state in order to enhance your employment prospects.
Builders License Facts
States and Territories have different requirements regarding builder's licences and you must be licensed by the state in which you wish to work.
In order to become a licensed builder, you must have:
- a minimum of 2 years’ relevant industry experience
- a TAFE certificate (or equivalent diploma)
The process can be lengthy, especially for individuals who are already working within the industry, having amassed a wealth of experience and practical skills. Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) offers a legitimate, cost-effective alternative to repeating units of competency and it can ultimately fast-track the process to obtaining a builder's license.
RPL uses already acquired skills as evidence to prove competency against units within the target qualification. RPL typically requires no classroom attendance or exams and gives you the opportunity to become eligible for the qualification you deserve.
Individuals who do not have the experience will still have to follow the standard procedure of obtaining their basic qualifications from an accredited institution, which will involve classroom study and practical experience in a workshop setting.
Do I Really Need a Builders Licence?
Anyone who wishes to work as a builder in the construction industry, needs a builder's licence. Without it, you may not:
- carry out any building work;
- submit any bids or quotes on any jobs;
- sign building contracts;
- perform any building work in your personal capacity.
Unlicensed individuals who are found to contravene the law will receive significant penalties or fines, and - depending on the state - will not be eligible to apply for a license in the future under any circumstances.
How to Apply for a Builder's License
The State or Territory's Building Commission regulates builder's licensing. While the process differs by state, most require certain qualifications, or completion of certain units within the following qualifications:
- Certificate IV in Building and Construction (Building) CPC40110
- Diploma of Building and Construction (Building) CPC50210
Additionally, evidence of practical experience will be required, and that will be based on the length of time the individual has worked in a relevant role, as well as the type of work performed.
Builders with practical experience may have their experience, knowledge, and skills assessed in order to receive a qualification through RPL instead of having to complete the qualifications again.
An individual with extensive experience in bricklaying or carpentry, but no formal qualification, could use the process of RPL to effectively complete his full qualification based on existing experience within a matter of weeks.
There is no difference in legitimacy between the two pathways (traditional or RPL), as both deliver the same qualification. RPL simply rewards deserving individuals who have amassed a great deal of experience over time at a fraction of the cost and in a more cost-effective way.
Builders License in Northern Territory (NT)
The Building Practitioners Board, a division of the Department of Planning and Infrastructure manages builder's licence registration in Northern Territory. Only registered building practitioners are permitted to perform any type of building-related work in NT.
All applicants must meet the minimum requirement of Certificate IV in Building and Construction (CPC40110).
How to Apply
Applications for builder's licences must be submitted to the NT Building Practitioners Board.
New Zealand, Interstate & Overseas Recognition
Any builders who hold current registration in any other state may apply for a builder's licence in NT within the equivalent category.
The Australian building and construction industry is highly regulated, which results in the highest quality of international standards. The above processes outline how you can obtain your builder's licence by state.
It's good to remember that other options do exist. Experienced individuals need not be required to spend any unnecessary time in the classroom.
Recognition of Prior Learning provides a legitimate opportunity to reward individuals who have obtained the required skills and experience by means of providing non-classroom based evidence towards meeting the outcomes demanded by the relevant qualification.
Skills Certified Australia can help you understand how RPL can make available the qualifications you need to push your career to the next level.