The Small Employer of the Year Award recognises a small organisation that has achieved excellence in nationally recognised training to its employees.
We met with the owner of LM Construction, Lee, to chat about how he’s been recognised as an employer of the year. Lee is currently doing his building diploma at Builders Academy Australia.
LM Construction is a locally owned and fully insured construction company specialising in new homes, multi-unit sites, renovations, and extensions. Lee is also taking on apprentices who are currently with Builders Academy Australia.
My name’s Lee Marcakis, I’m 31 years of age. I own and operate a construction company called LM Construction.
I currently employ six people. Four being on site and two inside the office, and a mixture of qualified builders and apprentices who are with BAA.
Why is training important to you?
Watching these boys grow is really good to see. From getting their car licences to operating a crew, it’s really good progress in the space of four to five years.
How would you describe the trainers at BAA?
All the trainers at BAA are fantastic. I’m also doing my diploma with BAA and the trainer I deal with in my schooling is fantastic as well.
What is one of the best parts about your work?
If anyone is having a bad day they always get cheered up by having Major on-site. One of my workers has Asperger’s, having Major on-site is an amazing thing as they’ve formed a good bond, he’s got a buddy and he performs really well because he’s happy.
What does this award mean to you?
To be recognised as the Small Employer of the Year is really good. It’s good to see people have noticed how much work I put into the apprentices at work and outside of work. I help them with their schooling outside of hours and I push my workers to do future courses such as diplomas and all that type of stuff. So I’m actually really honoured to have that award on me as it’s good to see people recognise the hard work I’ve put in.
Demand for training is growing
Lee shared with us how he supports his workers pursuing future courses such as diplomas, since completing a diploma is highly valuable and beneficial to employers. Anyone who has spent time in any industry recognises the need for training.
What’s more is that most diplomas can be completed within a year or much less. With this, the amount of time you spend learning and doing assignments will allow you to enter the workplace and reap the benefits sooner. In addition, many diploma and certification courses can be taken online so you can finish a diploma part time while you work.
He also shared some important insights around how construction apprenticeships help his company grow. Hiring an apprenticeship is a great way to create a pipeline of motivated and engaged employees, who you can help train from day one. There are also numerous wage subsidies and grants to help employers who choose to bring apprentices on.
Become an apprentice with BAA
On the flip side, if you’re thinking of becoming an apprentice to experience a great work-site like Lee’s, there are a few factors to consider. An apprenticeship is a unique opportunity to earn while you learn, and build your professional connections at the same time as your confidence.
On top of this, having a skilled trainer is important. “All the trainers at BAA are fantastic.” This is how Lee describes the trainers at Builders Academy Australia! You want to learn from someone who is in the industry and willing to teach you. Strong communication and the ability to mentor you is important.
To read more about what he thinks of the trainers at Builders Academy Australia and the advice he has for apprentices, watch the full video.