Plumbers, Gasfitters
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Supervising is one of the key ways the health and safety of the public is protected. It ensures that people who have less experience in the trades work under the supervision of experienced practitioners who can teach and guide them. Supervisors are responsible for making sure work is done safely and correctly.


Who needs to be supervised?

All people carrying out restricted work other than certifiers must work under supervision.

That includes:

  • Tradesmen
  • Journeymen
  • Provisional licence holders
  • Limited certificate trainees (trainee)
  • People working under exemptions (exempt person)


Good supervision

Good supervision has many positive impacts. It leads to better tradies, safer work and a good reputation for the profession.

The two most important aspects of good supervision are:

  • having a good supervision relationship; and
  • having the right systems and processes in place to record and monitor how supervision is being carried out.

A supervisor is responsible for the supervision relationship. Having a good working relationship will protect both them and their supervisee. The supervisor should be clear with their supervisee about what they expect of them, what they can and cannot do (including the consequences if they do things they shouldn’t), and how the supervision relationship will work. They should have regular discussions with their supervisee about how the relationship is going and give them feedback on how they are progressing. Most importantly, a supervisor should be approachable and available to their supervisee.

Having good systems and processes for managing supervision and keeping good records of what is happening will help protect both the supervisor and the supervisee. A supervisor should record things like the length of time the supervisee has been working, the types of work they have done, their level of competence and confidence with the different types of work, any formal training they have done, any areas of concern, and any areas for development. Records should also be kept of the discussions the supervisor has had with the supervisee and the things they talked about. And if the supervisor and supervisee are not in an employment relationship, there should be a written supervision agreement between them as well.

Good supervision records will allow the supervisor to have a better understanding of their supervisee’s capabilities and reduce the likelihood that they will be sent to a job without the right level of supervision and support. Records will also help if the supervisor is ever required to show how they are carrying out supervision and meeting their supervision responsibilities.