The Australian Government has announced a new model for engaging industry in the development of training products that meet industry needs. 

Under the model, Industry Reference Committees (IRCs) will act as the conduit for industry intelligence into training policy and practice and guide the development of industry-based training products (including training packages and support materials). IRCs will be convened as required in response to industry identified needs and government priority.
 
The IRCs will be supported by Skills Service Organisations (SSOs) which will be funded by the Australian Government to provide administrative, technical and operational support to assist IRCs in their engagement with industries. SSOs will be governed by professional boards with demonstrated independence and strategic and professional skills.
 
The Commonwealth Department of Education and Training will advertise an open competitive grants process to select suitable organisations to offer SSO services to IRCs for their chosen industries.

To ensure continuity and stability of the training products system there will be an orderly transition to the new model. A small number of SSOs will be established from October 2015, with the new model commencing full operations from 1 January 2016.
 
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