New Certificate II specialised classes of motor vehicle repair work introduced in NSW

There have recently been changes to the scope of work and qualifications required in some repair classes in New South Wales, including the removal of wheel balancing from the steering, suspension, and wheel alignment repair class.
The changes commenced on 1 September 2020 following the publication of the Motor Dealers and Repairers Amendment (Tradesperson’s Certificate) Regulation on 19 June 2020. 
The Amendment Regulation introduces specialised classes of motor vehicle repair work to allow employees to work unsupervised for certain types of motor vehicle repair work only; and permits employees with a relevant Certificate II qualification to apply for a tradesperson’s certificate under the Act.
Employees who apply for a tradesperson’s certificate with a Certificate II qualification will be permitted to perform repair work in one (or more) of the new specialised classes of repair work only.
NSW Fair Trading said the changes – which are part of the Better Business Reforms package which aims to create opportunities for small businesses by reducing costs and complexity without reducing consumer protections – will reduce the cost and time required to qualify for a tradesperson’s certificate because employees will no longer have to obtain unnecessary qualifications for work they will not perform. 
​​​​​​​The following classes of repair work have been introduced: electrical accessory fitting; exhaust repair; glazing; radiator repair and steering, suspension and wheel alignment (this does not include work done on hybrid and electric vehicles, where a Certificate III qualification is still required.)
The classes of electrical accessory fitting and glazing have however been withdrawn and will not come into force until November 2021. Tradespersons who do not currently hold a relevant tradesperson’s certificate but want to do glazing work or electrical accessory fitting work will therefore need to complete the prescribed qualification and obtain a tradesperson’s certificate by 1 November 2021.
“It is great to see the New South Wales government introducing these initiatives as there is interest in our industry in more formalised and nationally accredited training, however unfortunately this has been done without industry consultation which has meant there are some issues with some Certificates not currently existing,” AAAA Director – Government Relations and Advocacy, Lesley Yates, said.
“There is a lot of good in what has been introduced, but also some downsides. For instance, for those positions that previously required a Certificate III but now require only a Certificate II, this is a great opportunity for workers and employers. However, for positions where previously no Certificate was needed, there are now some new obstacles for hiring in this area.
“With industry consultation we feel we could be doing some of these things in an even greater capacity like we have with other states such as Western Australia, and we look forward to working with the New South Wales government on future developments to ensure they are as effective as possible.”
Mike Carnemolla of 313 Automotive in Sydney welcomed the changes.
“Under the previous award system, I couldn’t employ someone just to do tyres – they had to be a qualified mechanic or an apprentice mechanic. Unfortunately we have been seeing second and third year apprentices who could only change tyres as that was all they had done – they were missing out on the varied learning opportunities they should have been experiencing in those years. Or on the other hand, you had highly qualified mechanics whose skills were being greatly under-utilised,” Mike said.
“Now, you can employ someone under that award to do a specific task which I think is really good and is elevating qualified mechanics to the pedestal they should be on.”
More information about Certificate II and III licensing requirements, including the scope of work for the new classes of repair work, is on the NSW Fair Trading website. 

For more information about these changes, please email advocacy@aaaa.com.au