The creation of training opportunities is an important priority and CPB Contractors works with leading education partners and training organisations to support young people to acquire the skills they need to build their careers. Rosamae Celik is a trainee who is part of the NSW Government’s Infrastructure Traineeship program. Having recently completed her eight months rotation with CPB Contractors, she spoke about what she had learnt and what she’d say to other people considering a traineeship.
How did you come to be involved with the traineeship program?
I finished school in 2020 and spent 2021 working in a restaurant while I decided what I’d like to do. I was thinking of going to university but wasn’t sure. I was wary of accumulating student debt and wanted to be sure about what I wanted to do.
Then I saw the advertisement for the Infrastructure Traineeship Program, which allows you to get a qualification and do paid work at the same time, so I decided to apply and was accepted.
How does the program work?
You are provided with three placements, or rotations, with different employers. Each one lasts about eight months and is a combination of work and study at TAFE. I work four days a week and have the fifth day clear for formal study with TAFE. At the end of the program, I’ll have a Certificate IV in Procurement and Contracting.
When they called me and said they were going to put me in CPB Contractors’ group procurement team, I didn’t have a clue what procurement was! But I said yes, and then did my research. Procurement might not be something that everyone talks about, but CPB Contractors introduced me to the whole sector and all the opportunities involved with it.
So, what is procurement?
It is all about the supply of goods and services. It’s an essential part of construction and efficient procurement is central to the successful delivery of major infrastructure projects.
What did you learn during your eight months with CPB Contractors?
I was a real beginner, so they taught me everything. I started with all the basics and then moved to checking the documentation and making sure that everything was valid and up to date. I was able to find patterns in how things work. The team I was working with were very supportive. I learnt a lot by asking questions and nothing I asked was a bother to them.
What was it like moving from working in a restaurant to working in an office?
This was my first job in an office and it involved a lot of mental concentration as I was reading and reviewing documents. I realised that I had to be self-motivated, but this was easy as the more I learnt about procurement, the more I wanted to contribute.
I also had the idea that it would be strictly hierarchical and the top managers in the office would be remote, and you couldn’t speak with them. But at CPB Contractors it wasn’t like that at all. I was really surprised at the healthy working environment and how everyone is involved and can make their contribution.
What advice have you got for someone who might see an advertisement like the one you saw?
I’d say, go for it! It will give you a formal qualification and great job experience. If, at the end of the program, you decide it really isn’t for you, you’ll still have all the connections you’ve made through the three rotations. It really is an amazing opportunity.