Matching skills training with market needs

The NSW Department of Industry targets subsidies towards training programs delivering skills most needed in New South Wales. However, the Department still provides subsidies to qualifications that the market may no longer need, according to a report released today by Margaret Crawford, Auditor-General for New South Wales. 

Under the Smart and Skilled program, the Department maintains a list of qualifications eligible for funding and subsidises students who undertake these courses.

The audit also found that even the most successful training providers are only given one-year contracts, meaning that the providers have little certainty over their medium to long-term viability. 

Additional funding is available for scholarships and for providers that enrol disadvantaged students or deliver courses in high-cost areas of the state. The Department has not evaluated whether additional funding in these areas is contributing to students successfully completing courses. 

The report makes five recommendations to the Department of Industry that aim to improve the Department's use of data for decision making, contracts with training providers and communication with students.

Further information

Barry Underwood, Director, Office of the Auditor-General, on 9275 7220 or 0403 073 664 and email