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A Fresh Perspective: Strategies and Motivators of High-Achieving RTOs in VET

A Fresh Perspective: Motivations and Strategies of High-Achieving RTOs in VET

A recent study by the National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER) has uncovered the motivators of high-performing registered training organisations (RTOs) to excel in their field. The study sheds light on the intrinsic factors that set top-performing RTOs apart, offering valuable insights into the road to success.

Understanding What Drives Excellence: Motivators of High-Performing RTOs

Participants in the study revealed a diverse range of motivating factors, each playing a significant role in their pursuit of high performance. Among these motivators of high-performing RTOs that emerged, accountability, altruism, business security, and personal traits stood out as influential factors.

Accountability and Altruism

Accountability and altruism were closely related themes, with altruistic motivations often leading RTO leaders to foster strong relationships with students and employers. Ensuring that promises and obligations were met and the delivery of essential skills to industry for productivity and safety were key motivators of high-performing RTOs. Demonstrating care and concern for students’ well-being and the community’s welfare exemplified the altruistic impulses of these RTOs.

Personal Traits

For a quarter of the participants, their own personalities and characteristics played a crucial role in their pursuit of excellence. A competitive drive and a desire to be the best motivated these individuals to channel their traits into their RTOs, driving them to new heights of achievement.

Business Security

While a minority of RTOs saw business security as a motivating force, it was predominantly expressed by enterprises or large RTOs. Attracting investment, building the business, and ensuring financial stability motivated them to pursue high performance.

Fostering High Performance

In delving into the participants’ strategies for fostering high performance within their respective RTOs, a comprehensive exploration of their approaches revealed several prominent themes falling under the overarching theme of ‘values.’ These themes shed light on the essential aspects that drive their commitment to excellence and success in their organisations.

Leadership Values

Leadership values emerged as a critical determinant of an RTO’s impact, with staff management shaping the mission and motivating employees. Trusting staff, involving them in decisions, and granting them autonomy in training and assessment duties were identified as key leadership values that promoted high performance.

Teaching and Learning Values

Educational values, such as flexibility and an investment mindset, were seen as instrumental in determining an RTO’s performance. Being prepared to meet the unique needs of students and employers, and investing more in building relationships with stakeholders, were prioritised over the latest equipment or infrastructure.

The Power of Collaboration

Collaboration with stakeholders emerged as a driver of high performance. Fostering and maintaining relationships with employers, schools, parents, and clients facilitated the RTO’s ability to meet client needs effectively.

Quality Assurance and Staffing

Large RTOs emphasised quality processes integral to high performance, including maintaining records of trainer performance, quality committees, and structured validation of delivery and assessment materials. Engaging a capable VET workforce and offering relevant professional development were deemed vital to success.

Student Support and Teaching and Learning

Effective student support was one of the vital motivators of high-performing RTOs, with approaches like employability support, students as stakeholders, and student-centric responsive teaching being prioritised. The focus on teaching and learning processes and materials was particularly evident among large RTOs, who carefully contextualised training packages based on employer consultation and feedback.

In conclusion, this study offers valuable insights into the practices and motivators of high-performing RTOs. Understanding these factors provides policymakers and RTO leaders with the tools to elevate performance and deliver top-quality training and services.

Learn more about the research by visiting Beyond the standard: motivators of high-performing RTOs.

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