How we help RTOs get great TAE40116 qualified trainers


"She's the perfect fit! She's got 20+ years of industry experience, up to date industry qualifications, absolutely LOVES training. But... She doesn't have her Cert IV Training and Assessment so we can't employ her."

This is what Liz had to say about one lady they were considering employing as a trainer and assessor for their RTO's community services qualifications.

Liz is right. The Standards for RTOs mean that to employ a trainer and assessor, regardless of how experienced and qualified she is, she must hold TAE40116 Certificate IV in Training and Assessment. We solved this problem for Liz and her now happily employed trainer Carol.

We got her on the job sooner and our solution is surprising many RTO employers.


Our clients run highly successful training companies and we spend a great deal of time getting to know what challenges they face. As TAE40116 specialists, these are the kind of problems we want to know about. And when we invest time in this, we become better at finding solutions.

One big pain point is finding industry professional trainers and getting them on the job quickly when they don't hold the Certificate IV in Training and Assessment.

"It's like the chicken and the egg," said Cameron, HR manager for a large health industry based RTO.

"The most important thing to us is to find the best industry professionals to be trainers and assessors in our organisation. The trouble is we can't employ them until they have their TAE Cert IV, and some are reluctant to do the TAE without a guaranteed position because of the time commitment involved."

Cameron and Liz's conundrum isn't unique. Most RTOs face it.

"We can't have some inexperienced newbie with an el cheapo two-week Cert IV in front of our students but that's all we're getting. We just won't employ them. We need real industry professionals, the ones that have been in the game for years. They've had the success, they've overcome challenges. They're the people we want teaching our students. But they're busy in industry and don't have time for a TAE so long as they don't have a job to use it in. Many of them love the idea of training and giving back to the industry but they just make it too hard."


Training under supervision without the Certificate IV in Training and Assessment

Here's how we solved this problem for our clients and got their good industry experienced professionals in the training room sooner.

The Standards for RTOs clauses 1.17 to 1.20 have provisions trainers to commence training for an RTO without their Certificate IV. They can do this by getting a Skill Set (a few units of competency grouped together, not a full qualification, but still nationally recognised).

The three current skill sets that are allowable under these clauses are:

  • TAESS00014 Enterprise Trainer – Presenting Skill Set
  • TAESS00015 Enterprise Trainer and Assessor Skill Set
  • TAESS00013 Enterprise Trainer – Mentoring Skill Set

Once the person achieves one of the skill sets (much quicker and easier than the full Certificate IV) they can start training under supervision, and then complete the rest of the TAE40116 online at a steady pace. The fact that they are working in a real training environment means they have at their fingertips all the things that make getting a Certificate IV much easier, such as real students to train and real trainer/assessor colleagues to collaborate with on things like validation.

We found the first two, TAESS00014 and TAESS00015, are the best ways to help get trainers on the job for our clients sooner. Both have their benefits and drawbacks as follows:

TAESS00015 Enterprise Trainer and Assessor Skill Set

The big benefit to this one is that all four units in this skill set contribute to the ten units required in the full Certificate IV TAE40116. So once complete, the graduate is almost 'halfway there' to getting the full qualification.

The thing to note with TAESS00015 however is that it involves three of the four Assessment units (TAEASS401, TAEASS402 and TAEASS403) which are quite in depth, and can still take some time to work through. These units require several assessment planning and validation projects, as well as the assessment of five real people (under supervision).

Perhaps a better option for the truly time-poor is the Enterprise Trainer Presenting Skill Set.

TAESS00014 Enterprise Trainer-Presenting Skill Set

This skill set has only two units so it's a bit quicker to do. The two units are fairly 'entry level' presenting and instructing units (TAEDEL301 and BSBCMM401).

Many people with existing informal experience presenting and training others in non-accredited or workplace environments are fairly close to meeting the requirements of this skill set with little additional training. People already experienced in training, instruction and/or giving presentations may even get Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) for this skill set.

The main drawback with this one is that there's still quite a journey ahead after completing it to get the full Certificate IV. Further, only one of the two units can be really counted towards the full qualification.

The reason for this is that the TAE40116 only has one elective unit, and both of the units in this skill set are electives. Most people see the extra unit as a bonus, others may consider it superfluous to their needs.


Once the industry professional holds one of these skill-sets, they can train for an RTO within the bounds of clauses 1.17 to 1.20 while they complete their full Certificate IV in Training and Assessment online or through one of our tailored face-to-face programs. In some cases, this may be all they ever need, for example if they were just training one session a month as a way of 'giving back' to their industry, it might not make sense to ever do the full Certificate IV in Training and Assessment.


Can the person with these skill-sets also conduct assessment?

No. At least not on their own. Clause 1.13 of the standards tells us that "Industry experts may also be involved in the assessment judgement, working alongside the trainer and/or assessor to conduct the assessment."

So this means a person who holds one of these skill sets who's an industry expert in the competency being assessed can team up with someone who holds TAE40116 Certificate IV in Training and Assessment and together make the decision. That's actually a great way to conduct a good, fair, reliable assessment, I believe.


How long can someone train under supervision before they have to get their full Cert IV TAE?

There's no time-limit on this however I think it's important to exercise caution and be clear on intentions here. For example, if you have a trainer training under supervision, that's their full time job, and they've been doing it full time for two years with little-to-no intention of getting a Certificate IV in Training and Assessment, there'd be some cause for concern. RTO managers might also consider if the investment of time supervision such a person over such a long period of time is worth the cost? Surely if someone wishes to make a living out of being a trainer and assessor, they'd make the effort to actively work towards getting their Certificate IV in Training and Assessment in a reasonable timeframe.


What is the Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA) perspective?

I pitched the question to ASQA's General Manager Regulatory Operations, Mr. David Garner recently about ASQA's perspective on this approach, he also kindly clarified an answer to the question of how long can someone work under supervision before they have to get their full TAE40116 Cert IV. David gave me a nice clear response on this in the below video:



Better value through support and flexibility

RTOs choose SAVE Training because they get better value with a specialist provider who's on their team in a challenging environment, and truly understands their needs. We pride ourselves on strong, pro-active support for each and every person on their TAE40116 journey. We don't rest until our clients are raving about the SAVE Training experience and sharing their success story with their associates.


No extra cost

On request, SAVE Training can include one of these skill sets at no additional cost as part of enrolment into the online TAE40116, or offer them as affordable stand-alone packages.


SAVE Training is about solving problems for our customers, listening, caring and flexibility - not just giving out bits of paper. Start a conversation below.

Let's talk.

Write us a message below and we'll be in touch soon.

You can also call us on 1300 660 609 - we'd love to hear from you.