Have you heard about the Mi External Complaint Handling Service for RTOs?

Mediation Institute is a Recognised Mediator Accreditation Body who offers an External Complaint Handling Service for NMAS Accredited Mediators and Family Dispute Resolution Practitioners.

We also help companies and Registered Training Organisations throughout Australia to effectively handle complaints with the goal of avoiding escalation onto regulators.

Under the new, risk based auditing system for RTOs, ASQAs Student-centred audit approach student and other stakeholder complaints are more likely to bring your RTO into disrepute and trigger an audit.

Correctly managed complaints are a source of continuous improvement, new product and service innovation and student satisfaction.

Our service is designed to be flexible, low cost and appropriate to the needs of complainants, mediators and other stakeholders.

Mediation Institute also offers an External Complaint Handling Service for Registered Training Organisations to assist them in handling complaints about any aspect of their business and to comply with Standard 6 of the Standards for RTOs 2015.

What is the Mi External Complaint Handling Service for RTOs?

The Mi External Complaint Handling Service for RTOs is a service provided to Registered Training Organisations to assist them to provide appropriate responses to complaints and appeals in compliance with standards.

We provide an external and independent third-party complaint handling service when issues are unable to be resolved successfully internally or as a first point of contact should your RTO choose to outsource complaint handling.

The service accepts, handles and works to resolve complaints from students, staff, contractors, partners and any other stakeholders.

We also can assist with reviewing and improving the RTOs internal complaint handing system and improving the dispute resolution skills of their staff.

The service provides a structured approach to complaint handling organised around three practical Objectives:

  1. Identify and manage complaints and appeals early, in order to resolve them effectively and efficiently
  2. Provide professional, independent investigation and dispute resolution services, appropriate to the issues raised, that is considered by all parties to be fair and proportionate to the complaint
  3. Record and use information about complaints in an appropriate and meaningful way

By following the system all stakeholders will be assured of an appropriate response to complaints about your RTO.

Contact Mediation Institute if you would like us to become your RTO’s External Complaint Handing Service.

What situations does the Mi External Complaint Handling Service for RTOs provide services for?

The Mi External Complaint Handling Service for RTOs provides support for RTO clients who have received complaints about any aspect of their RTO.

The Mi External Complaint Handling Service for RTOs provides complaint management services in a wide range of situations including:

  • Learners – learners who have any concerns about their training and assessment.
  • Community – members of the public who have concerns about the actions of an RTO
  • Internal – staff, contractors and partners can have their concerns addressed promptly and impartially.

A core standard underpinning this service is proportionality.  The time and resources devoted to complaints handling should be proportionate to the circumstances.

What is the context for this service?

The Mi External Complaint Handling Service for RTOs is provided in the context of the Standards for RTOs 2015 and in particular Standard Six Fair Complaint Handling which requires that complaints and appeals are recorded, acknowledged and dealt with fairly, efficiently and effectively.  Clauses 6.1 – 6.6 Manage complaints and appeals – https://www.asqa.gov.au/standards/about-standards-rtos-2015/standard-six/clauses-6.1-6.6

The Mi External Complaint Handling Service for RTOs provides an appeals process and external complaint handling service for circumstances when the internal services do not resolve the issue.

The new Users Guide to the Standards for RTOs 2015 – https://www.asqa.gov.au/standards now has the standards explained in six chapters that reflect the student journey rather than in the order that the standards are written.

  • Chapter 1 – Marketing and Recruiting
  • Chapter 2 – Enrolment
  • Chapter 3 – Support and progression
  • Chapter 4 – Training and assessment
  • Chapter 5 – Completion
  • Chapter 6 – Regulatory compliance and governance practice

What does the student centered audit approach look like? 

This information has been provided by ASQA in an email to stakeholders 

  • ASQA takes a proactive, risk-based approach
  • Audits are triggered by ASQA’s risk intelligence
  • Audits are organised around the five key phases of the student experience
  • Current or former students are given a voice in the audit process
  • ASQA looks for evidence of the provider’s practice as well as their systems and processes
  • ASQA uses input from trainers, assessors and third parties to inform audits and verify RTO practices
  • Auditors consider information from a range of sources
  • Audits are customised and risk-based
  • Audit reporting is streamlined
  • Providers are accountable for identifying and correcting non-compliant practices, particularly those which have negatively affected students.

The past does not predict the future when there is a major change in regulation of an industry. Make sure that you do not trigger alarms in ASQA and deal with any complaints appropriately.

What is the role of the Mi External Complaints Handling Service?

The purpose of the service is to provide RTOs with an efficient and effective method to deal with unresolved complaints and appeals.

Our role is to ensure that the principals of natural justice and procedural fairness are adhered to in the complaint and appeals process.

This is achieved through an independent review of the complaint should internal RTO complaint handling processes fail to resolve the issue underpinning the complaint or appeal. 


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