Infrastructure Skills Legacy Program

The Infrastructure Skills Legacy Program (ISLP) will capitalise on the NSW Government’s record levels of infrastructure investment to boost the number of skilled construction workers and create fresh pathways to employment across the state.

The NSW Government has consulted with the construction industry in establishing the ISLP’s training and employment targets, which will:

  • allow existing workers to learn new skills on the job
  • increase the representation of young people, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and women in the construction industry
  • ensure workers from surrounding areas are targeted for training and employment to
    help address existing skills shortages across NSW.

Project training targets

There are currently three ISLP demonstration projects – Sydney Metro, Lismore Base Hospital Stage 3B - redevelopment and WestConnex new M4 – which have the following minimum targets applied to them:

About the Infrastructure Skills Legacy Program brochure cover

  • 20% of the total labour force of a project to be made up of ‘learning workers’ (defined as trainees and workers who need to update their qualifications to meet the needs of the infrastructure project )
  • 20% of all trades positions on a project made up of apprentices
  • double the number of women in trade related work (up from the NSW average of 1% to 2%)
  • 1.5% of the total contract value of a project to support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander participation
  • 8% of the total project workforce aged less than 25 years
  • strategies to ensure projects employ and train people from the local region.

Civil construction projects by their specific nature offer a specialised set of skills training opportunities and therefore may consider a target of 10% of their total labour cost, subject to individual project requirements, applied to apprentices and learning workers combined.

Download Infrastructure Skills Legacy Program PDF, 729.88 KB

Skills shortages

Skills shortages occur where there is insufficient availability of skilled workers to meet the current and emerging needs of industry. They can create critical short term and long term problems for the state’s economy.

Uptake of construction trades, NSW 2008-2015

Forecasts suggest an additional 300,000 construction workers will be required nationally by 2024. In recent years, however, construction trades have seen a declining trend in uptake across NSW.

Projected construction employment demand to 2023/24 (thousands), nationwide

The combined trends will result in a significant shortage of skilled workers if unaddressed. The ISLP is an important component of the NSW Government’s efforts to address current and emerging skills shortages across NSW.

2008 figures compared to 2015 figures