The purpose of this policy is to confirm that Optec has a strong commitment to meeting the high quality standards expected by our clients in the delivery of the training and assessment services that we supply to them.
Our quality management system takes the form of this manual and the associated operational forms and is based on the requirements of the VET Quality Framework which comprises:
- The Standards for NVR Registered Training Organisations
- The Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF)
- The Data Provision Requirements
- The Fit and Proper Person Requirements, and
- The Financial Viability Risk Assessment Requirements
Our primary quality objectives are:
- To provide quality training and assessment services within our scope of registration
- To utilise our Quality Management System as described within this manual as the primary tool in achieving best practice outcomes across our entire operation
- To ensure continuous improvement of our training and assessment systems and customer service requirements
- To fully comply with all relevant Commonwealth and State Legislative and Regulatory requirements for the operation of Registered Training Organisation’s
In the implementation of this policy we will focus on the needs of our business to consistently meet the ongoing needs and requirements of our customers’ and that of all of our statutory obligations.
Our quality management system will also provide us with mechanisms for the detection of system shortfalls and for stimulating continuous improvements.
This policy and procedures manual describes the mechanism by which these improvements are achieved by us and how we are able to remain fully compliant with the standards for RTO’s and the National Code of Practice 2007 at all times.
We define our stakeholders as but not limited to students both current and potential, members of staff, employer groups, enterprises, various government agencies and bodies, professional bodies and associations, other learning institutions, industry training advisory bodies and Industry Skills Councils.
The Training Coordinator and Compliance Officer, have direct access to the Chief Executive Officer (CEO), who has the defined responsibility and authority to ensure that Optec cooperates with the relevant authorities including ASQA and DET:
- In the conduct of audits and the monitoring of its operations
- By providing accurate and timely data relevant to measures of its performance
- By providing information about significant changes to its operations
- In the retention, archiving, retrieval and transfer of records consistent with the registering authorities requirements
We have a designated internal Finance/Accounts persons, who has direct access to the CEO, who has the defined responsibility and authority to:
- Ensure that we fully comply with our financial management policies;
- Ensure that all students fees paid in advance are protected
- Ensure that Optec refund policy is fair
- Provide when required a fully audited financial report of Optec’s operations
Continuous Improvement Policy
Optec is committed to the process of constantly improving the way in which its operations occur and its continuous compliance with the VET Quality Framework and the National Code of Practice 2007. Through this process, Optec will achieve further quality customer service and stay attuned to the current and future demands of the vocational education sector.
Optec will progressively and actively seek out and eliminate all potential problems and act upon all opportunities in a way that results in the continual improvement of its training and assessment system and customer service standards.
Optec’s approach to quality encompasses all its operations including training and assessment services, student services, financial operations, facilities, staff development and occupational health and safety.
Optec’s quality system is based on adherence to the following guiding principles:
- A commitment by all staff to continuous improvement of operational processes, training and assessment products and services;
- Input and involvement of all staff and students in identifying and assisting in the implementing of quality improvements;
- Systematic use of qualitative and quantitative feedback as the basis for identifying and prioritising improvement opportunities
To achieve the process of continuous improvement Optec acknowledges that Opportunities for continuous improvement can be identified from varied sources including:
- Formal and ad hoc feedback from students, staff and stakeholders;
- Complaints from student, staff and other stakeholders such as Education Agents and Work Placement employers;
- By undertaking a self-assessment audits against the VET QUALITY FRAMEWORK and National Code 2007;
- By undertaking internal Assessment Validation sessions;
- By attending internal and external professional development workshops
Sources of Continuous Improvement Opportunities
Feedback and evaluations:
Students and staff are encouraged to provide feedback about the quality of the Optec programs, facilities and resources.
- Students are encouraged to provide both verbal and written feedback throughout their training via Evaluation Forms that are supplied at various stages during the course and via ad hoc feedback to their Trainer or Assessor.
- Once a year students are asked to complete the quality indicators learner questionnaire.
- Trainers and Assessors are encouraged to provide feedback during staff meetings, on an ad hoc basis as well as through formal feedback at the end of a course.
- Administration staff are encouraged to provide feedback to the Management during regular staff meetings and on an ad hoc basis.
The Training Coordinator will collect and analyse all feedback for consideration as part of the ongoing quality improvement process and report to the Chief Executive Officer. Where possibilities for improvement are identified, it will be raised and supplied to the Compliance Officer for action.
When Optec receives a complaint, it is dealt with under the Complaints and Appeals Policy and Procedure. Any areas for improvement, which become apparent whilst handling a complaint, are raised with the Compliance Officer and actioned accordingly.
Optec will carry out regular internal audits against the VET QUALITY FRAMEWORK and National Code 2007 to measure compliance and highlight opportunities for improvement. For further information on the process for internal audits please refer to the Internal Audit Policy.
The Management of Optec and other appropriate staff attend relevant workshops run by such groups as the Victorian Department of Education and Communities, ASQA, ACPET and Industry Skills Councils.
Optec conducts internal professional development workshops on a regular basis with staff. This provides staff with an opportunity to gain information on changes to operational systems being implemented and to review a wide range of topics. These workshops are put together by the Compliance Officer or Training Coordinator with input from the CEO.
Optec has a policy and procedure in place for undertaking assessment validation. Assessment Validation sessions occur also as part of the internal professional development workshops. All improvements that are identified are documented and actioned. An assessment validation session with the Trainers is also conducted at least twice a year.
External Audit reports
Optec uses Audit reports from external bodies such as ASQA and DET as a source of continuous improvement and makes changes based upon those areas identified in these reports.
A Continuous Improvement File is maintained and includes agendas and minutes of meetings directly related to continuous improvement
Records of all continuous improvement activity shall be maintained for a period of at least three years in hard copy and five years in electronic format after the continuous improvement action has been completed to allow review by management, for the purposes of internal audit and for review by external auditors.
All instances of a potential risk are to be added to the risk assessment tool template and a mitigation strategy is to be created to minimise or eliminate the risk as per the requirements of the risk management policy contained within this document.
Internal Audit Policy
Optec is fully committed to ensuring its compliance with the VET QUALITY FRAMEWORK and the National Code of Practice. This is achieved and maintained by the conducting of an internal self-assessment audit on a yearly basis and conducting the scheduled activities as per the compliance calendar.
When conducting the internal self-assessment audit, the audit team where possible will consist of a member from the Optec Executive and an externally appointed compliance specialist and another experienced member of Optec staff as required.
The audit team will use the processes outlined below to ensure that policies and procedures have been circulated, understood and implemented consistently throughout Optec and that these policies and procedures are fully compliant:
- Examination of all documents and systems that consist of policies and procedures, student handbook, relevant components of the business plan, Trainers/Assessor qualifications and the staff handbook will be scheduled as per the compliance calendar
- Examination of the records of actual training conducted
- Perusing a sample of student files
- Analysing resources for delivery and assessment required by the relevant National Training Package or course, including training materials and assessment tools
- Holding interviews as required with administration staff, Trainers and students
- Observing processes such as assessment and learning activities
- Examination of existing facilities required by the relevant National Training Package or course
- Reviewing of processes with senior management
- Professional development
- Continuous improvement
At the completion of the annual internal self-assessment audit a comprehensive report will be generated on Optec’s compliance which is prepared by the compliance specialist and issued to the CEO.
This report will make a series of recommendations on any non-compliance found and the required rectification to bring these areas of non-compliance to become fully compliant. This report will be signed off by the CEO after review and implementation.
Where improvement actions eliminate a potential risk as defined under the risk management process, the risk matrix will be updated accordingly.