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Becoming a Painting Trainer

Is there demand for painting trainers?

There is currently a shortage of qualified trainers in the industry, particularly in states where the industry is busy. As older trainers retire, and younger painters have full employment, there is a shortage of painters who are qualified to train the next generation.

Who should apply?

Are you at the top of your game? Do you love your trade? Are you ready to become a leader and role model? Are you keen to share and mentor young painters? Do you love helping people? Do you have good technical skills, good attention to detail and excellent communication skills? Can you read well, write well, and prepare reports? Do you have a proven track record in the industry, with a wide range of experience? Then maybe you should think about getting into training. Female painters are particularly urged to apply.

What are employment terms?

Trainers are employed by Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) and by manufacturers. Trainers employed at TAFE are usually employed on either a casual, part-time or full-time basis. Trainers employed at private colleges can also be employed on a full-time or casual basis, but most work as contractors.

In both cases it is essential that you maintain your technical skills. This is usually done by working in the industry for a period of time every year; yes, by getting your hands dirty! This is a requirement for all trainers who deliver recognised training and assessment.

Trainers who teach in class are usually paid an hourly rate, and trainers who work as contractors are paid a percentage or on a 'per unit' basis.

How do I become a painting trainer?

To become a painting trainer you must:

  • Be a qualified painter. Recognised qualifications include Certificate III Painting and Decorating, Certificate in Painting and Decorating, and Trade Apprenticeship Papers. It is important to keep up-to-date with the latest technology and processes, so most trainers upgrade their skills regularly through Continuous Professional Development
  • Be a qualified trainer. This means you have completed the recognised qualification Certificate IV in Training and Assessment. This course is available full-time, part-time or on-line.
  • Have current skills and knowledge. Trainers must prove that they have maintained their skills and knowledge of the full range of subjects in Certificate III Painting and Decorating.

All the above qualifications are delivered through RTOs.

What is it like to be a trainer?

Trainers in TAFE usually work to a time-table called 'Block training'. This means that they will run classes on certain days determined by the TAFE. There is also a lot of paperwork to process, and assessments to mark. Lessons must be prepared, delivered and documented. Practical training is carried out at the campus.

Trainers who deliver on-site training can usually work from home. They visit students on-site and travel a lot. They work closely with employers to establish training plans, and teach subjects that the employer does not teach on-site. They also need to organise training and document everything they do.

Trainers often do Skills Assessments of experienced painters who are applying for RPL so that they can get a licence. This involves assessing the skills of a student and identifying what gap training is required.

Trainers also may run short courses in specialised skills like estimating, or business management.

Senior trainers often are involved in curriculum development, the development of training packages, industry consultation, conducting research, the preparing of reports, and the updating of learning materials.

Trainers often support events like Try-aTrade days, to encourage young people to get into the industry, and they might mentor their apprentices to compete in WorldSkills events, which test apprentice's practical skills to a high level.

Trainers who use e-learning systems must have excellent computer skills. The e-learning system will provide most of the theory lessons, allowing them to concentrate on marking and practical training.

Young apprentices may have learning disabilities, and migrant painters may have poor literacy and numeracy. This means that trainers have to be patient, and adapt to different learning styles. Sometimes learners need counseling, discipline or advice. The main role of the trainer is not to 'teach' by talking. Good trainers empower and motivate students to learn, and achieve their best.

If you would like more information about becoming a painting trainer contact the National Painting and Decorating Institute.