This month, we spoke to Shane Darwin, from telecommunications and training company JB Hunter, about what it takes to be a first-rate training company in 2017. Shane started working with JB Hunter on a contract basis in September last year, and he has since taken on the permanent role of ‘Training Manager’, where he oversees training delivery, compliance, curriculum and systems.
Shane, this is a question we ask and we get the full gamut of answers: how did you get into the RTO industry?
I was running my own business out on the road about five or six years ago in the telecommunications/installation sector, and I sort of fell into the RTO industry through a corporate restructure. My role was expanded to coordinate new technicians in a program we were running. So I got involved with a room full of people and found out that I really enjoyed it. And then sought out a role in the training industry after that.
Was that when the NBN was being rolled out?
Yes. In the initial stages of the roll-out. With anything you do, you should go with where your passion lies. But if it can be tied to an infrastructure project, that guarantee of work probably has a bigger base and potentially a bigger chance of success!
What’s the secret of writing a truly comprehensive course?
It’s knowing what the end user is actually doing out there in the field. For us, it’s very important that when the person comes out of training, whatever it says on the unit of competency, or on training.gov — at the end of the day, it is about whether they can do the job they are employed to do. So, we feel our responsibility is to take the VET framework and the requirements around performance structure, and translate that into something that really suits what the person actually does out in the field.
What about making your RTO really stand out online?
That involves your website, social media, LinkedIn, you’re whole marketing approach. It’s very important. For us, this year is about integration — not only of the website and marketing, but also the potential for online learning and assessment as well. I think student management systems are often the key. We have considerable plans to link our main marketing mediums with our main database, including our learning and assessing platforms — so our SMS and our websites are interacting and we’re capturing as much detail and knowledge as we can.
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