The Industry Collaboration Award recognises an exemplary skills development collaboration between at least one employer/ industry body and at least one organisation delivering nationally recognised training.
Established in 2013, the Barangaroo Skills Exchange revolutionised how workers engage with training and how employers’ workforce development needs are met. It was so successful that another Exchange was established in 2015 to support the development of the Darling Harbour precinct.
"We needed to develop something out of the box in order to bring together the myriad aspects of skilling and training for the construction phase of the multibillion dollar urban regeneration projects at Barangaroo and Darling Harbour," said Ron Wright, Project Manager, Skills Exchange Barangaroo and Darling Harbour.
In two years, 10,000 workers have undertaken formal skills training, resulting in over 16,000 accredited training outcomes ranging from Skills Sets to Advanced Diplomas. With a significant commitment by Lendlease to improving social equity, a key focus is providing foundation skills to vulnerable workers to improve literacy and numeracy skills.
Major building projects in Australia and internationally are now using the Skills Exchange model and Ron believes it is its proven capacity for replication which earned it the Industry Collaboration Award at the 2016 Australian Training Awards.
"We never dreamt that what was first started at Barangaroo would be replicated in other areas of Australia and overseas. It’s a credit to Lendlease that they have been very willing to share learnings with competitors in order to improve the culture and safety of the industry and build social equity. Its willingness to do this has had an impact right across the industry and to see other people taking on the model and using it to great benefit is really heart-warming."