Season 2, Episode 30


About This Episode

The current buzz within the training industry is, “Micro-Credentialling?”, “What is it and how will it affect my RTO?

Micro-credentialling is about industry needs and how the training sector will respond to meeting those needs. Spurred on by the Joyce Report, delivered to government in March 2019, which included an independent review of Australia’s vocational education and training (VET) sector to examine ways to deliver skilled workers for a stronger economy.

During this episode I will cover the emerging and future job trends in our workforce and what are you doing to meet those needs?

In this episode you will learn:

  • What is Micro-credentialing?
  • How will it impact your RTO?
  • How to use the data available to you for identifying emerging and future workforce needs
  • Breaking down micro-credentialling and identifying skills sets for your industry
  • Transferable skills and the opportunities with upskilling and cross-training
  • Linking jobs and training for better education that meets industry needs
  • JobTrainer and Micro-credentialling, what we have experienced so far
  • Improving your scope of registration
  • How to meet emerging and future workforce needs

In this episode, we’ll be covering what are the eight critical drivers to RTO success, which is training products. It’s really looking at Have you identified the emerging and future job trends in our workforce? And what are you doing to meet those needs? we’ll really be diving right into what are the future needs of the workforce, and what has changed what is going to have a huge impact on the training industry. And one of them is micro credentialing and how that’s changing over the next three years. So micro credentialing came about because of the national skills commission, and the National skills commission was established in July 2020. Whereby they’re really really focused on national leadership in the Australia’s labor market. With the current emerging and future workforce skills needs. They’ve really identified the importance of the Australian VET sector, and how can we improve the VET sector to meet industry needs, and in particular, ensuring that our workforce has the skills and knowledge required to be able to work in the future workforce. On the 28th of November 2018, the Prime Minister announced an independent review of Australia’s vocational education and training sector. And this was to examine ways to deliver skilled workers for a stronger economy. And it was focused on how can we improve our training in order to meet industry needs and what know what the workforce wants their labor force to have before they even apply for a job with that organization. So the review was led by the honorable Steven Joyce, a former New Zealand Prime Minister for tertiary education, skills and employment. Mr. Joyce delivered the final report to the government in March 2019. The National skills commission was created based on the recommendations by the honorable Steve Joyce, in this paper, it was a very interesting paper because it covered a lot of what was wrong with that sector. What were the issues? And more importantly, what were the outcomes that we were achieving, and the fact that we weren’t actually achieving what the workforce needed. So the national skills commission was created. And in the national skills commission, it was really their focus, they have three long term outcomes that they are focused on. And this is to make an enduring a relevant contribution to the labor market and the information that we get out of the labor market. Also to improve the quality and accessibility and relevance of that, and to contribute to the labor market that effectively aligns IT skills needs with the education and training. How are you adapting your training to meet the emerging and future skills, labor market? What are you doing to get out there and find out how you can meet those needs. So what we’re really focused on with within micro credentialing, and with working with our clients is really exploring the skills clusters, and the emerging and future skills needs. So it’s looking at how can we explore what are the possibilities that are out there. Now on the national skills Commission website, you can actually find a set of skills clusters that you can have a look at. And what they’ve done is they’ve actually got information data that’s going into this website to identify skills need within a family of skills clusters. So skill skills clusters, show groups of similar specialist tasks. The specialist tasks are designed to describe day to day work within an occupation. They these tasks are broadly transferable. If you can do one task in a cluster, you can also do others. So skills clusters illustrate a new way of looking at the labor market at a deeper level than occupational classifications or qualifications. This view shows how skills are related and connected to one another, and illustrates this transfer ability between the skills across different occupations. And this is going to be the key to micro credentialing moving into the future and looking at how you can put together a skill set or a course that is looking at those transferable skills. Because what’s happened is if you look at the airline industry, for example, right now With the airline industry, there is a lot of unemployed. So a lot of people have a lot of skills, who are now out of work. So you could actually have a look at these skills clusters of what they have working within their industry that are now transferable into other industries. And in particular, if you look at what it’s not just the pilots, and the hostesses that no longer have work, it’s also the engineers and the ground staff and the baggage handlers, there’s lots of different areas that now they have these skills, but they need to transfer them into another industry sector now. So I highly recommend you get on to the national skills Commission website, and look at these exploring these skills clusters that they have within the within this with this data that they’ve got on the website. And you can learn so much about what you can do to build a course that’s going to meet those meet those skills cost plus donate. So what you do is you actually can go in and you can look at different industry sectors, then you can look at the skills clusters, within those industries sectors, and then look at the type of roles where those skills can be transferable from one job role to another job role. So, for example, it could be the construction industry. And within the construction industry could be appraise or evaluate properties. And when you look at that, there’s all sorts of roles that can use those skills. So insurance investigators, auctioneers, accountants, management, accountants, valuers, real estate agents, or real estate representatives. So there’s lots of skills there that are transferable into other areas. And what you could drill down into from there is the types of occupation profiles that would need that skill set based on that family of skills clusters. So what you can do on this website is you can go in, drill down into a skill set and look at, okay, what is the skill set that you could put together that would meet those needs, and then they also go into the different levels of core competencies and the skills that they would need in order to work within that area. Another really interesting part that’s on the national skills commission is they’ve now added a section on the website called jobs and education data infrastructure, so it’s in short, is Jedi. So Jedi is all about looking at Australia’s economy and how it’s changing. So they’ve developed an intelligence on Australia’s labor market, workforce changes, and current and emerging skills needs, and put this data into the website where anybody can access it. So as an RTO, I highly recommend that you get in there and access it. So jadite provides real time view of the Australian Labor Market, and draws complex data from multiple sources into its data engine, and transforming it into meaningful insights for many different users. In in particular, for an RTO, you can go in and actually look at the data for emerging and future trends. And look at the courses that you could offer for those emerging trends. So they’re really looking at skills, and being in our common language skills, underpin the data and enable us to speak in a common language, and really linking jobs to the training that’s required in order for them to work within those skill set areas. And what’s really good about Jed is it enables them to anticipate future needs and adapt to changes in our our economy to meet those needs. So if you haven’t had a look at it yet, I recommend that you get on to the national skills commission.gov.au. Our work backslash jobs and education data infrastructure, even if you just Google jenai, or jobs in education infrastructure, and you’ll also see it in the show notes. I’ve added the links to these websites in the show notes as well. And you’ll find so much about what are the emerging future needs. So Jen is a gender is in powering several online tools to support individuals navigate a changing labor market. We’ve already seen some of these come out. So job trainer is one. So job trainer is for anyone aged between the age of 17 and 24, who’s looking for work, you may be able to study or get a free or low course fees through job trainer. So Jed, I contributed to the development of the list of job training courses by mapping these skills in demand by employers, and critical to Australia’s economic recovery, to qualifications and courses. And we’ve already seen the rollout of job trainer or across Australia, and then now with the individual states. So this individual states have used this data to be able to identify what are the skills needs for the future. There’s also jobs which says jobs, which is all about helping you to explore jobs, you might not have considered and find jobs that you may have already have skills for. So it’s looking at those transferable skills, where they may be unemployed, and they can transfer those skills into another job role. And there’s all sorts of data on this website that you can access all around, you know, switching skills and, and transferring those skills into another job. There’s also jobs hub, which assist people to find jobs in demand in their location matching their skills. So it’s really looking at or how can we get you transferring those skills into another area. There’s also your career. So the national careers Institute is a new portal providing Australia’s authoritative source of career information. And it is the website where careers advisors within schools, and also job job active providers, I referring their unemployed, to and students to these websites, to be able to access more information about the training industry, and what careers are out there in the future. So the key is linking jobs to training and with a focus on industry needs, and what are you doing, what are you doing to meet these needs? And what does this mean to you when you’re really looking at changing lives for education, and adapting your training to meet those needs. So what is micro credentialing? It is the future of education. It’s really looking at short courses that focus on skills gaps in the industry, and it’s developed to meet industry needs, focus on building critical skills that are applied to emerging and future job trends in the market. So the benefits of micro credentialing is deep learning. It’s where you can gain critical skills and required knowledge that reflects the changing landscape of professional practice and industry. acquired skills, so develop the hard and soft skills that will enable the students to specialize and innovate in the current and future world of work. It’s also industry recognized and really focused on industry needs, so gain recognition of newly attained skills, knowledge and accomplishments and capabilities that are Industry Focus. And as artios, they can receive a statement of attainment that is recognized around Australia. The key is industry connection, learn from today’s experts via courses made for tomorrow’s challenges. So really looking at micro credentials of skills and skills gaps, so they get to meet those industry needs. What are you doing to meet the emerging and future needs of education, and the workforce? And what are you doing to meet with those needs? One of the things that we recommend is engaged with industry. So there’s lots of different ways that you can engage with industries looking at going to industry direct, but you could also go to workshops, conferences and forums, and connect with industry directly to identify Well, what are the emerging and future trends within the workforce? You could also go to your service skills organization and identify Well, what are the training packages that they’re working on getting involved with training package development? And how can you meet training package needs and skill sets within your training that you’re delivering? He could also conduct industry surveys of what are the needs and what are their current needs and future needs? And how can you meet those needs. And this is in particular the gaps so looking at the skills gaps, and how you can make Those needs, you could also hold focus groups. And this is a really good way to be able to get access to what are the industry needs right now? And how can you meet those needs. And it’s holding a focus group that is specifically within industry sector, we actually delivered training on industry engagement, that includes focus groups, and how you can deliver focus groups more effectively. We also included a PowerPoint with that as well. And this was in our test superhero course. But we’ve also separated the industry consultation course, so that people can access that core separately, but the focus groups is a really good way to engage with industry. Another really good way is to conduct industry needs analysis of the industry know that you’re working right now. So these employers that you’re working with and going in and actually identifying what are the skills gaps and needs that they have within their organization right now, and other areas to go to job active providers and find out where they’re having trouble feeling. So they haven’t got candidates that have the skills and knowledge required to fill the job. That the jobs that they have out there right now. So how could you provide training that meets those skills gaps? So big thing is being actively involved in Industry Focus workshops, conferences and forums to identify future needs, which is crucial for the meeting the future needs of education within the training industry. So what are you doing right now to stay current within your industry? And have you identified what training products that you could offer to meet those needs? And how are you looking at short courses that you could offer within your training organization is going to meet these industry needs. This is an area that really needs a huge focus on within your RTO in order to improve your training products, but also that big thing is meeting training industry and what are you doing to meet those training industry needs. So that’s it for today’s podcast. I hope you really enjoyed this. And if you’d like to know more information, look at the show notes. I’ve got quite a few links in there for some great research that you could conduct in order to improve your training products to meet those needs. Thank you for listening, and I look forward to catching up with you the next podcast

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Vivacity Update – Education Facilities – Compliance and Profitability

Education Facilities – RTO & CRICOS Compliance and Profitability
by Chris Green, c2cglobal

In the Education space both Public or Independent, Domestic or International, there is a huge compliance requirement and one area there is often a lot of confusion is the compliance requirements for education facilities for both the CRICOS and RTO sectors.

Vivacity invited Chris Green from C2C Global, who specialises in 9b and building compliance requirements specifically for the education sector in Australia, to be our guest writer for this months Vivacity Update providing clarification on this sometimes confusing requirement.

The compliance requirements for premises fall under the National Construction Code (NCC) and the Building Code of Australia (BCA) and are driven by the Australian Standards (AS/NZ). These are Federal requirements and cover all of Australia. Each State or Territory then has its own legislation that these requirements are applied through via the local Councils and/or Principle Certifying Authority (PCA) often referred to as  Private Certifier’s, Building Surveyors etc.

Achieving compliance for your new or existing premises is a 2 step process, first being “approval” which is usually done by Council and then “compliance and certification”  which can either be done by Council or a private PCA.

The first step is to confirm that Education and/or Training is a “Permissable Use” under the Councils Local Environmental Plan (LEP) and the Development Control Plan (DCP). This is done via an application to council such as a Development Application (DA) or a Planning Permit (PP) depending on what State you are in.

Depending on the Council this process can take 3-4 months plus and once you have the successful approval back, it will confirm that education and/or training is approved and you now move to the next stage which is compliance and certification.

The council approval will be conditional on the new premises complying with the NCC and BCA and under the code, Class 9b is the Building Classification that an education provider operates from and is achieved through a Construction Certificate in NSW. This certificate is provided by the PCA and is what you will require before you can start to build the new campus fitout and the PCA ensures the new works all comply with the BCA and AS/NZ.

Once the works are completed, the PCA will inspect the works and confirm they have been installed to comply and in NSW will then issue an Occupation Certificate (OC) which will confirm the campus is Class 9b compliant so you are good to go!

The reason for this change of use and building classification is that under the code, it is permissable for education premises to have significantly higher occupation numbers and this makes sure that the facilities can provide the comfort and safety of all the occupants incase of a emergency event.

It is important to note that under the Code, there is no difference between an International or a Domestic campus, it’s a campus so the Education approval and Class 9b certification applies to both International and Domestic alike.

Also, AQSA or TEQSA may be the regulators for the RTO and HE sectors however, it is the local councils and the PCA’s that regulate the BCA and AS/NZ so just because ASQA or TEQSA don’t directly ask for a Class 9b OC, you are still required to have one to operate legally as an education provide from your premies’s.

Something to be mindful of when selecting a new campus is under the BCA, there are 6 elements of the building that will impact on the numbers that can supported under the code and only one of them is the actual size of the space.

It is very common for providers to have the space for more students however, one or more of these elements will restrict the student numbers which can have a significant impact on the revenue that can be generated form the campus which can make a premises unviable based on fixed lease and fitout costs or require extra space be taken on a lot sooner which adds to costs and risk.

The good news is this is not always the case and one of the specialties of c2cglobal is working with provides to unlock the unused potential of their existing campus and provide 30%-40% plus extra occupancy numbers within the same floor plate and fixed lease costs.

This process also reduces the need for extra space so you are not taking on extra space and/or moving the whole campus thus avoiding the extra lease costs and extra fitout cost which are a major overhead in setting up a new campus.

It also reduces your growth risk and if there is a down turn in the sector, you are not left holding the cost of the extra space which can place a significant strain on any companies finances.

If you would like to know more about c2cglobal and the services they provide, please contact the team at c2c on  +61 2 9906 6523 or email c2c@c2cglobal.com.au. You can also visit c2cglobal’s website by going to: https://c2cglobal.com.au/

Want to learn more about how Vivacity can assist you with your CRICOS Registration?

Check out our documentation, such as the International Student Handbook and CRICOS Documents or if you are looking for both, check out our CRICOS Compliance Package

Auditors Desk – June 2015

Here we are now, six months in from the implementation of the new Standards for RTO’s. Since the beginning of the year we have conducted 17 Mock Audits and attended 12 ASQA Audits, its been a busy year to say the least. The great news is that our policies, procedures and documentation has been 100% compliant at every ASQA Audit this year, which is very exciting for our clients and the Vivacity team. In this edition of the Auditors Desk I thought you would get the most benefit if I provided you with the “Top Six Tips” on what ASQA have been targeting at audit.

Vivacity’s “Top Six Tips”:
1. Assessment Tools – This has always been a high non-compliance area and it continues to be under the new standards. Assessment tools that do not meet the Performance Criteria or the Assessment requirements of the Unit of Competency is where most of the non-compliances have been found this year. The best way to avoid non-compliances in your assessment tools is to validate them before you commence using them, which is not always possible, but a necessity. A common myth is “If we purchase our assessment tools from a Publisher, they should be compliant”, this is not true, even the Publishers tell you in their contracts that it is the RTO’s responsibility to contextualise the tools. Some good publishers, which are the ones we recommend, will guarantee their assessment tools are audit compliant and if they are not compliant at audit they will rectify the tools to meet the audit requirements.
2. Training and Assessment Strategies – The biggest change in the TAS has been Volume of Learning. The TAS should include how you have met the new Volume of Learning requirements, including the required hours for each qualification level (ie Certificate III should be delivered in one year, not the common 10-20 week period that most RTO’s offer). Another important component of the TAS should be the methodology on how you plan to deliver and assess, this should include either a Delivery or Session Plan, that outlines the units you will be delivering and how you will be delivering them. If your plan is not clear, you will be non-compliant.
3. Trainers & Assessors Quals – This is another area that still has high non-compliances. Your Trainers/Assessors must have a minimum of 3 years industry experience (this is not documented anywhere in the Standards, 3 years is based on what we are hearing at audit), not only should they have experience within their industry, they specifically should have experience in each Unit of Competency (UOC) that they deliver. Your Staff Matrix should include all the skills and knowledge that your Trainer/Assessor has that are matched against the Performance Criteria of each UOC, if they do not have this minimum skills and knowledge, find another trainer or develop a Professional Development plan to ensure that they do acquire the skills. A common area of non-compliance is Trainers and Assessors who do not have currency in the VET sector, this is professional development that the Trainer has undertaken to develop their training and assessment skills, such a simple area to fix but so many trainers do not keep their skills and knowledge up to date.
4. Delivery Plans – As stated above, a Delivery Plan or Session Plan should clearly outline to your Trainer and Student how the training will be delivered and assessed, so that it is clear what the trainer is to do and the expectations of the student. It should clearly outline the units you will deliver for the qualification and include all the assessments and a timetable of when the assessments are due.
5. Assessment Validation – With the new Clauses on Assessment Validation (1.9-1.10), a strategy should be in place on how you will manage your Assessment Validation, including a schedule of when you will validate your tools over a 5 year period, which should be validated in order of each units risk rating. You should also have in your strategy Who will be on your Assessment Validation Scheme, specifically that the Assessment Validation team includes qualified and experienced staff who meet the requirements of the Clauses.
6. Complaints & Appeals – The new areas that should be included in your Complaints and Appeals Policy and Procedure (Standard 6) is how will you ensure that a complaint or appeal is acknowledged in writing and meets the Principles of Natural Justice, which basically means that you have a process that ensures that the complaints and appeals process is clear for the student and provides a clear process for students to make a complaint to a third party if your organisational process is not sufficient.

The best way to identify how your RTO meets the requirements of the Standards, is by having someone external from your RTO conduct an Internal Audit, someone who is not part of your culture or organisation, someone who can take an un-biased view or your organisations systems and practices. It is amazing how easy it is for your organisation to become complacent against the standards, particularly when there has been a massive change in the Standards. In the last five years alone there has been 3 changes in legislation, which means that if you last updated your policies and procedures a year ago, they will be non-compliant.

Industry Consultation

We often find that RTO’s are not utilising the data that they collect from Industry Consultation, or collecting sufficient data from Industry. How have you taken the Industry Feedback to improve your Training and Assessment? Are you collecting data from the relevant people? The people you target should be the people who will recruit the students following completion of their training.

The best way to review your data collected is through RTO Meetings, which are minuted and distributed to all staff, so that everyone can benefit from the Industry Consultation undertaken.