9 urgent things Registered Training Organisations must come to grips with in the next 3 months

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It is fair to say that Vocational Education and Training (VET) in Australia has been going through a paced reform process but things are about to get sped up with global forces and digital disruption taking over.

Back in 2013 we were predicting many of these reforms and were talking about the need for Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) to collaborate, diversify, niche or die (This is the presentation at the ACPET National Conference in 2013 – you can have a laugh at the Vanilla Ice sound bites!).


Now the question for most of you is “how can I jump ahead of my peers, carve out pole position in innovative products and services, and integrate new discovery technologies into my business?”

It is fitting to be writing this thought provoking blog today at the end of the quarter, outlining the 9 things that RTOs must come to grips with in the next 3 months so you are not left behind.

  1. Another college closure

We seem to keep counting the collapses but it is a distraction and it is slowing down.

Move swiftly away from anything like this, focus on professionalism, reinvention and standing up for VET.

  1. Big workforce, careers, jobs and skills shifts are happening now

The VET sector needs to be cutting edge, leading and taking charge of this transformation.

Register for the Future Careers, Jobs and 21st Century Skills webinar on Tuesday 5th April 2016 and get in 45 minutes what has proven to be a massive investment and weeks to distil.

If you are in Adelaide that evening come along to a networking evening with a focus on 21st Century capabilities in personal branding, presentation and social media.

  1. Budget

Whilst we are heading into election mode in Australia and might see some new initiatives there are some very interesting proposals being muted as the Government is searching for savings.

Like ending HECS write-offs from deceased estates, an increase in fees, and comprehensive comparative information on individual university performance and penalties for institutions with high attrition rates.  Whilst this conversation is more about higher education, take note as it will mean VET is next.

You could consider what the Government might announce and surely it must marry with the National Science and Innovation Agenda #ideasboom announced late last year.  If you haven’t already done so, become familiar with the 29 measures and how VET might enhance and/or be missed from the NISA.

Join in a webinar on the Friday after the Federal Budget is handed down that will explain all of the announcements and funding.

Specifically analysed for you, if you are interested in:

·        Early childhood and education

·        Economic and regional development

·        Employment and entrepreneurship

·        Funding, incentives and programmes

·        Higher Education and Vocational Education and Training (VET)

·        Industry and innovation

  1. Digital disruption

After an eye opening trip to the USA, it is becoming clearer as to how existing and new discovery technologies are going to disrupt VET.  Not only because of the need to define these new capabilities but to work alongside Artificial Intelligence and robots, applying machine learning and Virtual Reality.  Those who get this, seek to exposure themselves and embrace these technologies, will leap ahead of the pack.

  1. Era of the entrepreneur and startups

The era of the entrepreneur is upon us with innovation and tech capabilities increasingly needed across all qualifications and courses.

Applying lessons from lean startups, you will identify problems to fix, design a minimum viable product (MVP), validate your MVP with your customers, tweak the solution, set pricing and targets, and enrol students or gain new clients.

  1. Global opportunities

There are opportunities available if you have insight into different markets and truly understand your strengths and core capability.

And the thing that most RTOs are missing out on is identifying their intellectual property that other people, institutions and countries want to know.

Be like Jenny who said,

Thank you so much for the final documentation on Australian and International Growth Opportunities for our RTO.  I’ve read through your action plan and marked it up with notes and ideas everywhere.  I was pleased to find the outcomes were sound and the actions were practical.  It has built my confidence in how to move forward.

I’ve downloaded all of the documentation that you’ve provided and we are working steadily through it all.  Thank you so much for your support.  Best of luck with your business ventures.  We’ll keep in touch.

  1. Next generation Training Packages

RTOs should never ever wait for others to develop their products, instead use this time of uncertainty and change to try out new minimum viable products, learning methodologies and models.

On this point you can apply an innovative approach, with low risk and potentially significant returns if you work collaboratively in the shoes of your customers.

  1. Non-accredited training

Explore the relationship between non-accredited training, units of competency and formal qualifications as a robust way to validate with employers, industry and individuals what should be on your scope, what is in demand and what will transform your offerings.

There is much evidence that non-accredited training, particularly delivered digitally, is a far bigger market than anything that is accredited or formalised.

  1. STEM

Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) is a core capability and it must be made more explicit where it sits across Training Packages.  Not just obvious job roles but all careers, skills and qualifications particularly where institutions are making capabilities like maths mandatory.


Whilst you might be taking 3 months at a time it is important to balance a practical approach with your future focus.

Education, employer, government and industry colleagues are looking out to the next 3, 5 or 10 years with key horizons being 2020, 2025 and 2030.

If you want to get to these horizons alongside or in front of your clients, peers and students join the Global Workforce Architects Program and develop skills in demand internationally.

31 March 2016




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