This particular client applied for the role of VET FEE-HELP Coordinator within a State (Queensland) government department. As is the standard for application preparation in Queensland government, the preparation of a two page statement was required to address five key competencies. My client gained a job interview and although she was not offered the role, the panel advised that she placed second. Following are excerpts from three of the criteria.

Demonstrated ability to communicate effectively with staff, senior management, government (State and Commonwealth) representatives and students…

The Department of HHH is presently our largest client; we recently fulfilled a large tender for the Diploma of Nursing comprising 53 students in total. Communications throughout the tender preparation process was expansive and involved: liaising with clients to collate the applications and to commence the process of collating all the required information for student enrolment; and liaising with the internal RPL representatives to have students assessed. Those results were then communicated back to the clients and the representatives of the Department of HHH by a certain date. I communicated between all the parties on a continual basis throughout the process to ensure all dates were in line. Communications with students occurred via email; I provided them with all the information regarding orientation requirements, My.TAFE orientation, and on what they can expect from orientation. Once the tender was received and approved, I communicated with all stakeholders (via group emails or phone where necessary) regarding: rural and remote allowances; ACETI study incentives; and students’ options for accommodation in residential schools. From start to finish, I facilitated communications between my manager, my director, clients and students; I ensured all stakeholders were kept up-to-date on the latest developments.

Demonstrated high level interpersonal, negotiation, conflict resolution and consultation skills including the ability to gain effective outcomes with a broad range of client groups within the private and public sectors…

ZZZ had a specific funding contract to deliver training to government employees, and a number of Certificate IV and Diploma level courses had been costed in line with contract requirements. I was responsible for ensuring my team’s health qualifications fell within those contract requirements. In doing so, I was involved in the following negotiations:

  • Negotiated with the Gold Coast HHH to communicate product offerings to their entire district on an individual employee broadcast. Negotiations were necessary in order to promote our product to their district. They were conducted over a two week period with successful outcomes: 250 enrolments in total in the first and second rounds.
  • In the second round, I initiated and opened negotiations with all 14 health service districts state wide. I held negotiations with Principal Workforce Development Officers to convince them of the benefits of promoting and broadcasting our product offering throughout their districts. Negotiations spanned one month in duration. I met with resistance throughout negotiation proceedings as the health service districts believed they would be accountable for the student enrolment process. To counter this, I assured and influenced them that they would be required only as a ‘communication tool’; that their employees would benefit from this particular funding as it was roughly only 10% of cost; and that they would not be responsible for any administrative-related functions. Negotiations were successful: 11 of the 14 health service districts signed on, leading to a total of 700 enrolments.

Demonstrated ability to understand and interpret legislation and provide advice to stakeholders…

Both the AAA Program and the SSS tender had ongoing stringent legislative requirements and guidelines to follow. Several of these included: eligibility criteria for both the employer and the employee; requirements surrounding the funds that were being administered; commencement and completion dates for students; documentation requirements; and associated reporting requirements. It was essential I possessed in-depth understanding of the requirements in order to accurately explain and provide advice on specific SSS requirements to the Facility Manager. In one instance, I advised on the impact to a student’s scholarship if that student ceased employment with their current facility. According to the guidelines of the contract, I advised the Facility Manger that funding was allocated to the facility, not the student; therefore, the student could not take the scholarship with them. Additionally, I liaised with internal clients to explain information regarding these tenders; specifically, how they related directly to the eligibility of the students, the facilities I contacted and why I deemed this necessary. Overall, I read and digested all the contractual obligations regarding these tenders to ensure all requirements were met in terms of student and employer responsibilities; ZZZ obligations surrounding RPL offers and assessment; drops and swaps; commencement dates; and importantly, that these requirements were met by a certain date.

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Annie Cerone