Complaints Handling


Fee for services

Complaints and Appeals

Definitions

For the purposes of this document the following applies:

Learner(s) refers to all persons enrolled or seeking to enrol in a course with Australian Salesmasters Training Co Pty Ltd 

Complainant refers to Learners (as defined above) who have lodged a grievance with Australian Salesmasters Training Co Pty Ltd.

 

1. Overview 

Australian Salesmasters Training Co Pty Ltd (ASTC) is committed to providing an effective, efficient, timely, fair and confidential grievance handling procedure for all Learners. This policy covers both academic and non-academic grievances and appeals. 

 

Academic matters include those matters which relate to learner progress, assessment, course content or awards in a VET course of study.

 

Non-academic matters include those matters which do not relate to learner progress, assessment, course content or awards in a course and include grievances in relation to personal information that the provider holds in relation to a Learner.  Non-academic grievances tend to arise from events occurring at a provider or from decisions made by a provider.

 

Complainants are entitled to access the grievance procedures regardless of the location of the course at which the grievance has arisen, the Complainant’s place of residence or mode of study.

 

This policy does not replace or modify policies or any other responsibilities which may arise under other policies or under statute or any other law. Also, the dispute resolution procedures outlined below in this document do not circumscribe an individual's rights to pursue other legal remedies.

 

The ASTC complaints policy and appeals policy will:

  • ensure the principles of natural justice and procedural fairness are adopted at every stage of the complaint and appeal process
  • be publicly available  
  • set out the procedure for making a complaint or requesting an appeal 
  • ensure complaints and requests for an appeal are acknowledged in writing and finalised as soon as practicable, and
  • provide for review by an appropriate party independent of ASTC and the complainant or appellant, at the request of the individual making the complaint or appeal, if the processes fail to resolve the complaint or appeal.

 

2. Responsibility

The Compliance Officer is responsible for implementation of this policy and procedure and ensuring that all staff are fully trained in its operation and Learners and Complainants are made aware of its availability.

 

3. General principles

These principles, which will be adhered to by ASTC, apply to all stages of this grievance procedure:

  • The Complainant and any respondent will have the opportunity to present their case at each stage of the procedure.
  • The Complainant and any respondent have the option of being accompanied/assisted by a third person (such as a family member, friend or counsellor) if they so desire.
  • The Complainant and any respondent will not be discriminated against or victimised.
  • At all stages of the process, discussions relating to grievances and appeals will be recorded in writing.  Reasons and a full explanation in writing for decisions and actions taken as part of this procedure will be provided to the Complainant and/or any respondent if requested.
  • Records of all grievances will be kept for a period of five years to allow parties to the grievance appropriate access to these records.  These records will be kept strictly confidential and stored at ASTC, Level 3, 30-40 Harcourt Parade, Rosebery, NSW 1445. Access to these records may be requested by writing to the Office Manager at the aforementioned address.
  • A Complainant shall have access to the internal stages of this grievance procedure at no cost.  Costs for an external appeal will be shared equally by ASTC and the Complainant.

 

4. Informal Grievance Procedure

Learners are encouraged initially to attempt to resolve a grievance informally by talking directly with the person concerned to resolve the problem.  This step is not mandatory and a Learner may proceed directly to the Formal Grievance Procedure.

 

5. Formal Grievance Procedure

5.1 Stage One

Formal grievances should be submitted in writing on the Formal Grievance Form to the Learner Support Officer at ASTC, PO Box 638, Rosebery, NSW 1445 or by email to info@astc.edu.au. The Formal Grievance Form is located on the ASTC site at https://www.thesalesmasters.com.au/support/complaints-handling/.

 

The Complainant is invited to include suggestions about how the grievance might be resolved. The Learner Support Officer will notify the Complainant of receipt of the grievance within 5 working days.

 

The Learner Support Officer will then assess the grievance, determine the outcome and advise the Complainant in writing of their decision within 10 working days. The Complainant will be advised of their right to access Stage Two of this procedure if they are not satisfied with the outcome of Stage One.

 

5.2 Stage Two

If the Complainant is not satisfied with the outcome of Stage One they may lodge an appeal in writing within 20 working days of receiving the written response with the CEO at ASTC, PO Box 638, Rosebery, NSW 1445.

 

The CEO will notify the Complainant of receipt of the appeal within 5 working days.

 

The Complainant’s appeal will be determined by the CEO who will conduct all necessary consultations with the Complainant and other relevant persons and make a determination of the appeal.  The Complainant will be advised in writing of the outcome of their appeal, including the reasons for the decision within 10 working days. The Complainant will be advised of their right to progress to Stage Three of the grievance procedure if they consider the matter unresolved.

 

5.3 Stage Three

If the Complainant is not satisfied with the outcome of their appeal then an independent mediator will be sourced by ASTC through the Resolution Institute (LEADR), the Association of Dispute Resolvers. Complainants may request that their grievance is referred to the independent mediator by writing to the CEO at ASTC, PO Box 638, Rosebery, NSW 1445.

 

Costs of such mediation will be shared equally by ASTC and the Complainant.  As a guide mediator’s costs would be $385 for the first four hours (or part thereof). Subsequent hours would be $137.50 per hour. It is common for most disputes to be resolved within the initial four hour allocation.

 

If the Complainant remains unsatisfied with the outcome of the mediator’s decision, then they may contact the Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA).  For contact details and information please see: Complaints about training providers | Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA).

 

ASTC will give due consideration to any recommendations arising from the external review of the grievance within 30 days of receipt of the recommendations.

 

6. Publication 

This Learner Grievance Policy and Procedure (Academic and Non-academic) will be made available to Learners and those seeking to enrol with ASTC through publication on the website (www.thesalesmasters.com).

 

Continuous Improvement

Any improvement arising from a learner academic grievance or appeal will be recorded in the Improvement Action Registry. This register will be revised by the CEO and the Program Co-ordinator (or delegated nominee) at least four times per year and will provide a report to the Board of Directors.

 

Record keeping and confidentiality

 

Records of all academic grievances handled under this procedure and their outcomes shall be maintained for a period of at least 5 years to allow all parties to the grievance appropriate access to these records, upon written request to the Program Co-ordinator (or delegated nominee).  

 

All records relating to complaints will be treated as confidential and will be covered by the Privacy Policy and Procedure.

 

Reference:

Appeals Form

Appeals Outcome Form

Complaints Form

 

Complaints Outcome Form


 

Smart and Skilled

As a first step, students are encouraged to discuss their concerns with their approved Smart and Skilled training provider. The provider's consumer protection officer should be able to help students with their concerns.

 

Approved Smart and Skilled training providers are required to include the Smart and Skilled website details and 1300 number on all public information, enrolment forms and student induction material, so that students are aware of their rights and options for making a complaint or providing feedback about their training.

 

Where Training Services NSW receives a complaint, the student is asked whether they have raised their concerns with their training provider and whether the provider has responded. If the student asks for further assistance, our officer initially tries to resolve the issue through information and mediation.

 

The discussions may take place through letters, emails, telephone conferences, video conferences or face-to-face meetings. The officer then advises on the most effective solutions to resolve the complaint.

 

While the officer handling the complaint will do all they can to help resolve the issue, they cannot guarantee a successful solution. The officer will inform both the student and the training provider when they have done all they can to assist. It's then up to the student or training provider to look for another, more formal process to resolve their dispute. View list of all Consumer Protection contacts.

 

Smart and Skilled

Student and employer enquiries

Training Services NSW Assistance

1300 772 104, or if you are calling from overseas +61 2 8267 7770.

Training Services NSW offices 13 28 11

smartandskilled.enquiries@det.nsw.edu.au

 

Contacting the Smart and Skilled customer support centre to seek assistance, ask for advice, make a complaint or provide feedback.

 

While You can do this by email, over the phone on 13 28 11, or in person at a Training Services NSW centre.

The Smart and Skilled customer support centre can provide:

  • information and advice on your rights
  • support with your complaint or dispute, including:
  • a process for progressing any unresolved complaint
  • referrals to other agencies that can help with specific complaints within their scope
  • a mediation service to help you resolve your complaint with the training provider. officer

Continuing training where your current Training Provider is no longer able to deliver subsidised training under Smart and Skilled

I

f your Training Provider is no longer able to deliver subsidised training to you under Smart and Skilled, there are options for continuing your training.

 

Option 1:

You can select a different Training Provider

 

If you select another Smart and Skilled Training Provider then you will continue to receive subsidised training.

 

Your current Training Provider will assist you to transfer to the new Training Provider which you have selected. They can also suggest an alternative Training Provider.

 

To select a different Smart and Skilled Training Provider use the Skills Navigator.

 

 

Option 2:

You may be able to remain with your current Training Provider

 

Under this option you may have to pay your Training Provider full fees to finish your training. You will need to ask your Training Provider how much you will have to pay to complete your qualification.

 

 

If you decide to transfer, what help will you receive?

 

Your current Training Provider should provide you with the following assistance as soon as possible:

  • manage fee arrangements for transferring you as an enrolled student to a different Provider. Your current Training Provider will refund any balance of student fees already paid.
  • issue you with a Statement of Attainment/ Qualification which reflects your actual training and assessment progress to date.
  • issue an updated training plan.

If you are an apprentice or trainee: For assistance, contact your Australian Network Provider or Training Services NSW on 13 28 11.

 

Who to contact

  • Issues to do with quality of training, contact the Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA)
    Website: 
    www.asqa.gov.au
  • Consumers specifically asking for a refund or similar should contact NSW Fair Trading
    Phone: 13 32 20, Monday-Friday, 8:30am to 5pm
    Website: 
    www.fairtrading.nsw.gov.au

Still not sure?

The National Training Complaints Hotline will direct you to the relevant authorities or the most appropriate organisation to assist you.

Phone: 13 38 73, Monday-Friday, 9am to 5pm

Email: NTCH@dese.gov.au
Website: 
www.dese.gov.au/national-training-complaints-hotline

 

Complaints and disputes handling process

Complaints and disputes are handled by an officer from Training Services NSW, who first tries to resolve the issue through information and mediation.

 

The officer contacts the training provider and you to help you to resolve the issue. This is done by mediation – trying to get each party to understand and respect each other's points of view, negotiating over differences and discussing possible solutions.

 

These discussions may take place through letters, emails, telephone conferences, video conferences or face-to-face meetings. The officer then advises on the most effective solutions to resolve the complaint.

 

While the officer handling the complaint will do all they can to help resolve the complaint, this cannot guarantee a successful solution for you or the training provider. The officer will inform both you and the training provider when he or she has done all they can to help. It's then up to you or the training provider to look for another, more formal process to resolve the dispute.

 

Student rights and obligations

As a student receiving government-subsidised training under Smart and Skilled, you have certain rights and obligations.

 

You have the right to:

  • expect that the quality of your training meets the standards, regulations and requirement set down by the Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA) and Smart and Skilled
  • be informed about the collection of your personal information and be able to review and correct that information
  • access your training provider's consumer protection complaints process.

Your obligations include:

  • providing accurate information to the training provider
  • behaving in a responsible and ethical manner.