Signature Training is a Registered Training Organisation with responsibility for delivering vocational education and training. Signature Training collects and stores personal information on our learners and industry clients. Signature Training complies with the Privacy Act 1988 (Commonwealth). This policy describes how Signature Training collects, manages, uses, discloses, protects, and disposes of personal information in accordance with the thirteen Australian Privacy Principles (APPs) outlined in Schedule 1 of the Privacy Amendment (Enhancing Privacy Protection) Act 2012.
Under the Privacy Act 1988 and Privacy Amendment (Enhancing Privacy Protection) Act 2012 (s6(1)), personal and sensitive information is defined as follows:
- Personal information: “information or an opinion about an identified individual, or an individual who is reasonably identifiable: (a) whether the information or opinion is true or not; and (b) whether the information or opinion is recorded in a material form or not.”
- Sensitive information: “(a) information or an opinion about an individual’s: (i) racial or ethnic origin, or (ii) political opinions, or (iii) membership of a political association, or (iv) religious beliefs or affiliations, or (v) philosophical beliefs, or (vi) membership of a professional or trade association, or (vii) membership of a trade union, or (viii) sexual preferences or practices, or (ix) criminal record, that is also personal information; or (b) health information about an individual; or (c) genetic information about an individual that is not otherwise health information; or (d) biometric information that is to be used for the purposes of automated biometric verification or biometric identification; or (e) biometric templates”.
Authority to collect and store information
Signature Training is an approved Registered Training Organisation by the Australian Skills Quality Authority. This registration is issued under the authority of the National Vocational Education and Training Regulator Act 2011. This legislation requires Signature Training to collect personal and sensitive information from its learners. This requirement is specified in the Data Provision Requirements 2012 which is one of five legislative instruments that Signature Training must comply with as a condition of its registration.
The date provision requirements require Signature Training to collect data from learners in accordance with the Australian Vocational Education and Signature Training Information Statistical Standard (AVETMISS). This is a complex information standard that defines information about who the learner is, where the training is delivered and what they are studying. The Standards for Registered Training Organisations require Signature Training to retain and store this information for up to 30 years and to report training activity to government agencies in accordance with mandatory reporting requirements.
Together these requirements form a statutory obligation to collect, store and report information of any learner participating in nationally accredited training. The publications referred to in this section can be accessed from the ASQA website.
Collection and use
Signature Training collects personal information, either directly or indirectly, that is reasonably necessary for, or directly related to its delivery of the services it offers. Some of the information collected may be regarded as ‘sensitive’ as defined by the Privacy Act.
Contact information such as name, organisation, position, address, telephone, and email are collected for marketing, support services, mandatory reporting and for communicating with stakeholders as part of our day to day operation.
In addition to information collected training activity, Signature Training will also collect, store and report information relating to satisfaction surveys, complaint handling and on our client employers.
Names, addresses, phone numbers, emergency contact details, bank account details and other employment related information is collected from employees for the purpose of managing human resources. The management of staff personal information complies with this policy.
Learner personal and sensitive information as well as training activity information is prescribed by the AVETMIS Standard. This information is collected directly from our learners using enrolment forms which may be paper based or electronic and other administrative forms including but not limited to complaint forms, recognition application, request for refund, transfer application, etc. Much of this information is entered into our learner management software called “VET Trak”. Hard copy records are retained within our learner files.
Survey responses are collected using our Employer and Learner Satisfaction Surveys which are issued both in hard copy and electronic format. Learners fill out these surveys in our office when they come to collect their Certificates or at the final submission of their assessments. The learners fill the survey on Survey Monkey. These survey results are used to do the analysis. After the analysis, the surveys are either destroyed if hard copy or permanently deleted if in electronic form.
Enquiry information from prospective learners including personal contact information is collected directly from individuals who make data requests either by telephone or email in person or via our website.
Signature Training staff’s personal information is collected from individuals on employment commencement.
Personal information collected by Signature Training that may be regarded as ‘sensitive’ under the Privacy Act includes:
- ‘Disability’ and ‘long-term impairment status’ (health); and ‘indigenous status’, ‘language spoken at home’, ‘proficiency in spoken English’, ‘country of birth’ (implies ethnic/racial origin). This information is specified in the AVETMISS data elements and is collected for the national VET data collections, national VET surveys, and may be collected for VET-related research.
- ‘Memberships of professional associations’ and ‘health and work injury information’ is collected from Signature Training employees for HR management purposes.
Signature Training respects an individual’s right not to receive marketing material, and provides an option within communications and on its website for individuals to unsubscribe from receiving marketing material. Signature Training conducts its marketing communications and dissemination of service information in accordance with Australian Privacy Principle 7 (Direct marketing), the Spam Act 2003 (in respect of electronic communications), and the Do Not Call Register Act 2006. It is not, however, Signature Training practice to ‘cold call’ for the purpose of marketing its products and services.
Google Analytics and cookies
The Signature Training web servers automatically log information such as server address, date and time of visit and web pages accessed. No personal information is recorded. These logs are used for website management and improvement.
Unsolicited personal information
If Signature Training should receive unsolicited personal information, it will be treated and managed according to the Australian Privacy Principles.
Notification of collection
Signature Training aims to notify individuals of the collection of their personal information before, or at the time of collection, or as quickly as possible thereafter. Notifications are usually in writing, but may be verbal for telephone help-desk services, or research conducted by telephone interview.
- Marketing – notification is provided on our website course application page. Individuals are also notified at the time of collecting personal information for events. A privacy notice is provided in all Signature Training marketing communications.
- Quality Indicator surveys – notification is provided in the letter of invitation to participate in the surveys and also at the time of collecting the information (online or by telephone).
- Signature Training staff – Notification is provided on employment commencement.
Disclosure of personal information
Signature Training does not disclose personal information other than for the purpose for which it was collected, or an individual has consented to a secondary purpose, or an individual would reasonably expect this (such as receiving communications about upcoming events), or if required by law.
Signature Training may share personal information with the Commonwealth government in accordance with Commonwealth contractual obligations. In these circumstances Signature Training will take reasonable steps to inform and seek consent from the individuals concerned and take all reasonable steps to ensure that the recipient handles the personal information according to the APPs.
Signature Training does not sell its mailing lists to third-parties for marketing purposes.
Signature Training does not disclose personal information to overseas recipients. While people around the world can access material published on our website, no statistical or research publications contain identifiable personal information.
Management of personal information
Signature Training endeavours to ensure the personal information it collects and uses or discloses is accurate, up to date, complete and relevant. Signature Training routinely updates the information held in its customer relationship management system. This includes confirming with learners who are returning for a new enrolment if their personal contact details have changed.
Access to and correction of personal information
Individuals may, subject to the exceptions prescribed by the Australian Privacy Principles, request access to and correction of their personal information where this is collected directly from individuals by Signature Training.
Signature Training does not charge for giving access to or for correcting personal information. Requests for access to or correction of personal information should be made in accordance with the learner access to records policy.
nformation retention and disposal
Personal information is held in electronic and paper format:
Information collected from learner enrolment applications and survey responses is held in databases.
- Names and contact details of stakeholders are held in VET Trak and email contact lists and also in excel sheets managed by Admin.
- Names and contact details collected during the delivery of services may be held either in electronic form in Signature Training document management system or in paper documents which are locked in cupboards and filing cabinets.
- Personal staff information is held in VET Trak and HR management, folders/files maintained by RTO Manager.
- Backup copies of all electronic files held in Signature Training systems are kept in the event of system failure/loss. All backup copies of system files are secured.
Signature Training retains personal information for 30 years. When personal information is no longer necessary for Signature Training business functions, and it is lawful to do so, Signature Training destroy the information.
Signature Training takes active steps to protect personal information from misuse, interference and loss, and from unauthorised access, modification or disclosure.
- Signature Training systems and internal network are protected from unauthorised access using appropriate technologies. Most system data transferred over the internet is protected by Secure Socket Level protocol (SSL). The inherent risks associated with data transmission over the internet are, however, commonly acknowledged. Individuals, who do not wish to provide their personal information via the online website forms have the option of mailing this information to Signature Training.
- Access to VET Trak is protected through user log-on and password.
- Third-party providers used by Signature Training for the delivery of services are all located within Australia and are required to be compliant with the Australian Privacy Principles and offer appropriate safeguards to protect personal information.
- Signature Training premises and data storage systems are fully secured. Signature Training practices clean-desk policy and locking workstations when working with personal information. Paper documents containing names and addresses are required to be locked away and shredded when destroyed.
Complaints and concerns
Complaints or concerns about Signature Training management of personal information should be directed in writing to Signature Training Chief Executive Officer. Signature Training will respond in writing within 10 business days. Complaints received by Signature Training will be managed in accordance with the Complaints and Appeals and Appeals Policy.