What to look for in a training provider

There are many different training providers out there. Here’s what you should be looking for when selecting one for your training needs

Vocational education and training (VET) is a sector that has grown substantially over the last few decades. Just about everything you could ever do for a job now has some formal training component that goes along with it. And with there being so many different types of training courses available, there are many different types of training provider.

Being able to find the best one for your team, that will provide a high level of training and, more importantly, the most relevant training can be complex. And it is critically important when it comes to high-risk work and safety training that your provider be equipping your team with everything they need.

Pulling from over 20 years of experience, the team at HSE have put together this guide to what to look for when it comes to selecting a training provider.

Registered training organisations

Any training provider you engage with to provide safety training should be a registered training organisation (RTO).

RTOs are regulated by the Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA), the federal government body that oversees the VET sector. As an RTO under ASQA’s watch, training providers are able to offer nationally accredited units of competency and other qualifications that are recognised anywhere in Australia.

Work safely at heights training participants climbing a mock communications tower at HSE Sydney.
Participants in CPR training usising an automated external defibrillator (AEB)

Accredited and non-accredited training courses

Not all training courses are created equal. When considering safety training for your team, steps should be taken to determine whether or not the training being looked at is a nationally accredited unit of competency or not.

Nationally accredited units of competency ensure that the training your team receives is training that will be recognised at any workplace in Australia.

Training that is non-accredited may not be recognised anywhere at all.

You can find out more about the differences between accredited and non-accredited training on our blog.

More than a box-ticking exercise

Your training provider should do more than just provide the quickest, box-tick-ing-est way to complete training. When it comes to workplace safety, it is vital that workers get the opportunity to put into practice the knowledge delivered in the classroom.

While it may seem as through putting on a harness or identifying asbestos contamination is something that can be delivered via a quick online course, without putting those skills into practice information recall when at a job site can be challenging.

For example, in NSW it is a requirement of SafeWork NSW that general induction training (white card) be conducted over a *minimum* of six (6) hours, excluding breaks (see sec4.3.14 of SafeWork NSW’s conditions for RTOs. If a training provider is telling you it can be done in less time, then it is unlikely they are offering the course you need, or are not providing adequate time to fully cover the course material.

When it comes to providing training for situations like working at height or in confined spaces, the training provider should have an adequate setup to allow for realistic practical simulation exercises.

Competency management and refresher training

A high-quality training provider should also be able to ensure the your teams’ competencies are wholly managed and kept current where needed.

Having these processes in place ensures that your team is never caught out being denied entry to a site because their tickets do not meet the site rules for refresher training.

More information about refresher training, including some common timeframes for it, are available on our blog.

EWP training participant watches on as a pratical exercise is performed by others.