In Australia, a registered training organisation (also referred to as a RTO) is an educational body that is accepted as being a provider of nationally recognised training and assessment. Ultimately, it is an institution that trains students and provides them qualifications that are relevant and valid to the needs of industry. The RTO title also acts as an assurance to students and other individuals that the organisation provides quality training services.
The process of becoming a RTO can be a very complicated and expensive, and it’s often underestimated by businesses. As a result, many companies looking to gain and maintain registration can face significant financial burdens if they do not properly budget and plan comprehensive RTO policies and procedures for this process. This is why it is generally recommended that companies obtain RTO registration help when starting out, however it can be just as important to have ongoing assistance and support after registration to ensure compliance to relevant laws.
Much of the difficulty faced by RTO’s comes about due to the requirement to be 100 percent compliant at all times. The Australian government’s responsibility is to protect students and to ensure quality training services are provided, this flows on to the RTO as it is also their responsibility. By allowing an institution to be registered as a RTO, the government is effectively putting its stamp of approval on said organisation. To gain this approval, the organisation needs to maintain compliance with the respective framework which may be the VET Quality Framework or Australian Quality Training Framework, and continue to provide quality training at a high level, taking into consideration the interests of its students.
Given the complexity of the process, comprehensive planning is crucial for any organisation looking to become a RTO. Poor or rushed planning on the part of an organisation can be disastrous from a financial perspective. It is not uncommon for organisations to try and gain registration as cheaply as possible, only to be closed down by the regulator some short time later. If a RTO fails to allocate enough of its attention to meeting the respective standards, there is a high risk of forced closure in the future. There are, however, companies such as Skynet Corporation that specialise in RTO consultancy and can help clients with the process of becoming registered, and most importantly, providing quality support services to help the RTO maintain registration.