Supporting individuals with cross functional training designed specifically to assist them leading small to medium sized forestry contracting businesses.
The ForestFit Training program is being jointly developed by industry and the New South Wales (NSW) government in partnership with Australian Forest Contractors Association (AFCA).
Training designed specifically for leaders and emerging leaders of forest contracting businesses
The training program initially focuses on NSW contractors, providing harvest and haulage services to State forests, private native forests and plantations prior to national rollout.
The development of the training program was led by the Industry Reference Group (IRG) and supported by RTOs to ensure the ForestFit learning outcomes would be met.
The combination of accredited and industry endorsed training was specifically designed for leaders/emerging leaders, within a harvest and haulage business (owner, manager) who:
Can implement improvements/changes within the business.
Have a base understanding of the legislative and regulatory requirements for their business.
Training program pilot delivery
The ForestFit training program pilot launched in March 2021 with the face to face (F2F) delivery of session one of the Business management module to leaders of NSW forest contracting businesses in Tumut and Grafton.
A total of 12 participants comprise the Tumut group and 6 comprise the Grafton group covering land tenures such as plantation, native private forest and native state forest. The businesses undertake harvest, haulage, roading, sawmilling and other forest operations and range from small to large business size.
Participants attended F2F and webinar sessions across four key areas which have been contextualised for the NSW forest industry:
Business sustainability - enhance business efficiency, lower risk and increase profitability.
People practices and leadership - harness individual performance and retain and grow organisational talent.
Safety leadership - create a safety leadership culture for the ongoing monitoring of health, safety and environment.
Environmental systems and practices - Implement and monitor environmentally sustainable work practices and resource efficiency.
As part of the delivery participants had the opportunity to hear from subject matter experts to improve knowledge and skills in a number of topic areas including finance, insurance and risk management, employment law, WHS contract law, leadership and safety culture.
The ForestFit training program pilot concluded in May 2021 with the F2F delivery of session three of the Environmental sustainability module.
Refinement for national launch
The feedback received throughout the pilot delivery from participants and industry representatives was utilised to refine instructional materials.
Further refinements also included:
Discussions with the IRG to identify:
Advantages and challenges of accredited training vs industry endorsed
Decisions for national rollout.
Training materials were refined to:
Ensure alignment and contextualisation with the certification criteria.
Ensure the training materials provide the necessary support for businesses to successfully complete certification.