PMA30120 Certificate III in Process Plant Operations


The Certificate III in Process Plant Operations is a technical qualification for advanced operators and  technicians of production equipment within a process plant environment.

At this level, operators/technicians would undertake more advanced operations, typically of integrated plant units in accordance with the operating procedures. They would be able to apply their knowledge to anticipate problems.

They would be expected to solve a range of foreseen and unforeseen problems, using product and process knowledge to develop solutions to problems which do not have a known solution, or a solution recorded in the procedures.

In this course participants will undertake practical workplace improvement projects that focus on implementing Lean concepts and sustainable improvements to manufacturing environments. These projects are tailored to suit real areas of improvement within the workplace.

This qualification is normally offered in conjunction with one other qualification depending on the requirements of each company and its workforce.

The qualification offered in conjunction with PMA30120 Certificate III in Process Plant Operations is:


Training for this qualification is conducted in the workplace over a maximum of 18 months.



    This qualification is only offered as a traineeship.

    The program is suitable for manufacturing employees with significant experience of around 4 to 5 years minimum. Where there is a cohort with a mixture of experience at a worksite a small percentage of recent employees and apprentices with some manufacturing experience can be accommodated in the program.

    Job roles this program is suitable for include:

    • Operations
    • Research and Development
    • Engineering
    • Planning
    • Laboratory Technology
    • Procurement
    • Supervisory/leading hand/team leadership roles

    This qualification assumes that a learner has current or past work experience where operational or technical skills have already been gained and a supervisory or similar level of responsibility exists. It is not suitable for direct entry from school, or new entrants to the manufacturing industry who have no previous training or experience in manufacturing.


    There are no prerequisites, however, National Training Services offers this qualification as a work-based training and assessment program and therefore applicants must be employed in a suitable manufacturing company.

    Additionally, they will need to have the support of their employer to undertake the training and assessment program.


    National Training Services can access state government funding for this qualification through the Victorian Skills First funding program. Participants who are eligible for Skills First funding will pay no tuition fees. If participants are not eligible for funding a fee may be required, please contact NTS for details on fee for service costs.

    Note: Skills First funding is available for this program as a Traineeship course only.


    You may be eligible for Skills First Funding if you are:

    • an Australian citizen, permanent resident, New Zealand citizen, or a holder of an approved bridging, protection, safe haven or humanitarian visa; and
    • under 20 years old;


    • an Australian citizen, permanent resident, New Zealand citizen, or a holder of an approved bridging, protection, safe haven or humanitarian visa; and
    • over 20 years old and enrolling into a qualification higher than the highest qualification already held.

    Statement of fees for Skills First funded students

    Contact National Training Services to inquire about your eligibility for State Government funding. Phone 03 9988 7983 or 03 9988 7988


    To be awarded the PMA30120 Certificate III in Process Plant Operations competency must be achieved in twenty-one (21) units of competency. The twenty one units are comprised of:

    • Five core units of competency
    • Sixteen elective units of competency

    View the full list of units of competency here  →


    Training and assessment activities undertaken in the workplace include:

    • Training sessions
    • Project planning, implementation and presentation
    • Skills development


    Assessment consists of:

    • Written or verbal assessment
    • Workplace observation by the trainer
    • Project presentations reviewed by the trainer and workplace management
    • Third Party Reports

    The program is structured into 4 clusters of related and complimentary units. The units and activities within each cluster are structured as follows:

    • Clusters 1 and 2 – Planning, preparation, review, discovery and research
    • Cluster 3 – Workplace improvement projects launched and implemented
    • Cluster 4 – Implementation and consolidation of workplace improvement projects followed by measurement, review, evaluation and reflection


    All required equipment and materials are supplied by NTS and provided by the workplace.

    Helpful links  –  for detailed course information.


      Brokering Arrangements

      National Training Services has appointed a broker to identify and negotiate with workplaces wishing to undertake this training. See National Training Services Brokers List on our Compliance page for details.

      Compliance with Regulatory Requirements

      Access information about compliance with regulatory requirements including student information; complaints and appeals processes and forms; support services; and privacy arrangements.


      For eligible students this training is delivered with Victorian and Commonwealth Government funding.