Industry Reference Committee membership matters

On this page

The Australian Industry and Skills Committee (AISC) Secretariat has been streamlining the processes for recruitment for Industry Reference Committee (IRC) vacancies in individual expert or organisation positions. This process is outlined below.

IRC recruitment process

To support a consistent approach across the IRC network, as outlined in the IRC Operating Framework and the AISC Guiding Principles, the information below steps out the IRC membership recruitment process.

The AISC seeks to ensure that the composition of each IRC is representative of the industry or sector across Australia and is operating effectively and efficiently. Additionally, that IRCs provide industry coverage and expertise to support training product development for their industries.

In line with the AISC’s decision at the 2 December 2020 meeting, the AISC remains committed to ensuring that IRCs operate in accordance with the IRC Operating Framework. While vacant IRC positions should continue to be filled through existing processes outlined below, structural changes are currently on hold. The AISC may decide to review the structure or membership of individual IRCs where they have identified significant issues that are impacting the IRC’s ability to operate effectively. Any new proposed structures need to be agreed to by the AISC and undergo a public consultation process.

  • A structural change is any change that alters the composition of the IRC – the overall number of members, or the number or type of representative roles. For example, converting an employer position to an expert position.

Clause 5.1 of the Operating Framework states ‘The structure and membership of each IRC is subject to the approval of the AISC’. As part of appointing members to an IRC, the AISC considers the need to ensure the most suitable nominee is selected through a fair and transparent process. When considering nominations for IRC positions, the AISC is interested in the nominee’s:

  • comprehensive knowledge of their industry and relevant industry experience (where relevant)
  • level of influence across the sector and strategic approach to broad industry-wide issues
  • capacity to consider current and future directions for their industry and to relate those factors to skills and workforce development
  • capability to provide input directly to training package development, to seek input from established industry networks, and to represent a variety interests and skills needs across the industry
  • ability to undertake duties in good faith, acting in the public interest and best interests of the industry sector.

What happens if there is a vacancy on an IRC?  

There are three types of vacancies that can arise in IRCs - individual experts, organisation positions, and changes to organisational representatives.

Organisational representative position

If an organisational representative leaves the IRC, the organisation can put forward another representative. Once the SSO has received the nomination, it will notify the AISC Secretariat. If the organisation can’t provide a new representative, the AISC Secretariat will work with the Skills Service Organisation (SSO) and IRC to find a solution.

Individual expert and organisational positions  

The following positions on an IRC require a public nomination process to take place to fill a vacancy:

  • An individual expert: If an individual expert leaves an IRC.
  • An organisation: If an organisation (not an organisational representative) decides to no longer be part of an IRC.

As vacancies arise, it is expected that these would be filled through a public nomination process. Should the IRC and SSO believe that the position is no longer required, this should be discussed with the AISC Secretariat at the earliest possible time. 

Where public nomination process is conducted, the AISC secretariat will advertise the vacancy on the AISC website and ask for nominations to be submitted. Input from IRCs on a nominee’s eligibility is considered as part of the nominees’ assessment. 

SSOs and IRCs can continue to reach out to their networks and direct anyone interested to complete the public nomination process. The relevant SSO and IRC will also be provided with some text that they can distribute to help promote vacant positions.

Below is a step by step guide of the public nomination process to appoint an IRC position.

Step by step guide of the public nomination process to fill a vacant IRC position