The Excavator course is designed to teach you how to prepare and operate an excavator to meet minimum training and assessment standards for the civil construction industry.

Basic verbal and written English communication skills sufficient to read material and understand instruction. Where necessary theory assessment can be answered verbally.

Typically the training and assessment is competency-based. 40 nominal hours of training or supervised operation is generally required although the full course can be completed in a few full days. Please Note-Total time is dependent on competency of each individual.

Training and assessment is both practical and theory based and delivery can be selected by the learner as either log book or full course.

LOG BOOK TRAINING–Designed for those learners whom wish to complete the 40 hours of practical training on the job or at their current employment with a competent supervisor.
Step 1-Completion of theory training and machine familiarization. Learner is then placed on a training plan with their supervisor.
Step 2– Learner completes approx. 40hrs of supervised operation by a competent operator.
Step 3– Learner books and completes a final theory and practical based assessment and is issued paperwork.

FULL COURSE TRAINING– Designed for learners who don’t have access to the equipment, a competent supervisor or require the delivery of practical in a very focused one on one environment.
Step 1-Completion of theory training and machine familiarization Learner is then placed on a training plan with the trainer.
Step 2– Learner completes approx. 40hrs of supervised operation practicing skills and operation process as instructed by the trainer in a structured learning environment in a small group.
Step 3– Learner completes a final theory and practical based assessment and is issued paperwork.

VERIFICATION OF COMPETENCY (VOC) assessments for all machinery types can be completed onsite or at our training facility. For more information on VOC assessments contact the office.

SITE AUTHORISATION RPL Turn your mine site authorisations into civil or mine recognised qualifications for use in other employment. Contact the office for further information.


1. Plan and prepare for excavator operations

1.1 Access, interpret and apply excavator operations documentation and ensure the work activity is compliant
1.2 Obtain, read, interpret, clarify and confirm work requirements
1.3 Identify and address risks, hazards and environmental issues and implement control measures
1.4 Select and wear personal protective equipment appropriate for work activities
1.5 Obtain, identify and implement traffic management signage requirements
1.6 Select, and check for faults, equipment and/or attachments for work activities
1.7 Obtain and interpret emergency procedures, and be prepared for fire/accident/emergency

2. Operate excavator

2.1 Carry out pre-start, start-up, park, shutdown and secure equipment procedures
2.2 Coordinate activities with others at the site prior to commencement of, and during, the work activity
2.3 Continually monitor hazards and risks, and ensure safety of self, other personnel, plant and equipment
2.4 Drive and operate excavator, and modify the operating technique to meet changing work conditions

3. Lift, carry and place materials

3.1 Conduct communication practices associated with transportation and lifting of materials
3.2 Establish weight of load and ensure it is within safe operational limits of the machine
3.3 Select, attach and use slings and lifting gear in accordance with safe working load requirements
3.4 Position machinery and ensure stability and locate to effectively shift materials according to job specifications
3.5 Shift load safely and effectively
3.6 Move load using hand/audible/communication signals

4. Select, remove and fit attachments

4.1 Select attachment for the task
4.2 Remove and fit attachment according to manufacturer's manual and site requirements
4.3 Test attachment and ensure correct fitting and operation
4.4 Use attachment in accordance with recommendations and design limits
4.5 Remove, clean and store attachments in designated location

5. Prepare to relocate the excavator

5.1 Prepare excavator for relocation
5.2 Move excavator safely within and/or between work areas, observing relevant codes and traffic management requirements
5.3 Load and unload machine from float/trailer

6. Carry out machine operator maintenance

6.1 Prepare machine for maintenance
6.2 Conduct inspection and fault finding
6.3 Carry out scheduled maintenance tasks
6.4 Process written maintenance records

7. Conduct housekeeping activities

7.1 Clear work area and dispose of or recycle materials
7.2 Process records

  • Plan and prepare and conduct machine pre-operational checks
  • Operate and relocate an Excavator
  • Lift, carry and place materials
  • Select, remove and fit attachments
  • Carry out machine operator maintenance
  • Conduct post-operational checks and clean up