School Business Community Partnership Brokers Welcome Welcome everyone. Before we start proceedings today, I would like to acknowledge the traditional owners of the land upon which we are meeting, and I wish to pay my respects to elders, both past and present. Welcome to the Information Session for the School Business Community Partnership Brokers Request for Tender. For ease throughout the rest of the presentation I will call them Partnership Brokers. My name is Vivianne Johnson and I‟m a Director in the Youth Attainment and Transitions Taskforce of the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations (we call ourselves DEEWR for those of you not familiar with the acronym of the Department, and I‟ll use that acronym for the rest of the presentation). I will be presenting this Information Session today. Please take a moment to switch off mobile phones before we get started. This is one of a number of Information Sessions on Partnership Brokers being run around the country this week and next. There is also a presentation on the Youth Connections program scheduled to start here at xxxx today. You may notice that I am reading this presentation from a script. This is to ensure that the formal part of every Information Session presents exactly the same information in the same way. These presentations will be made available on the DEEWR youth attainment and transitions website following the final public information session. Before we get too far, I also need to let you know that the question and answer session at the end of this presentation will be taped. This is to ensure that we are able to provide all tenderers with the same information. Overview The School Business Community Partnership Brokers Request for Tender was released on the 21st of August 2009 and was advertised in major national and regional newspapers on the 22nd of August 2009. The purpose of today‟s session is to provide you with information on a number of aspects of the Request for Tender. In the presentation we‟ll cover the following topics: o Probity – what is it and how will DEEWR ensure it; o the Education context and how it is relevant to the program; o a description of the Partnership Brokers Program; o key aspects and requirements of the Request for Tender; and o at the end there‟ll be an opportunity for you to ask questions. If you could please hold your questions until the end of the presentation it would be appreciated, as there is a lot of material to cover in the formal part of the presentation and we need to ensure it is all covered. Once all the Information Sessions are completed, the Questions and Answers from each session will be consolidated and posted on the internet so you can see what was asked elsewhere and what the responses were. There will be some overlaps and repetition with the Youth Connections session that is being run later today but this is necessary to ensure that each session stands alone in its own right, and provides enough background information for potential tenderers. The information provided today will highlight key elements from the tender documentation, but is not a comprehensive summary. It is important that you read the tender documentation in its entirety if you intend to submit an application. We have made every effort to ensure that the information presented today is consistent with the tender documents. Today's information is not intended to replace any information in the tender documents. If there is any inconsistency between the information in the tender documents and that presented today, then to the extent of the inconsistency, the tender documents take precedence. Probity Principles Probity – What is it? Probity is defined by the Commonwealth Department of Finance and Deregulation as “the evidence of ethical behaviour in a particular process” and as “complete and confirmed integrity, uprightness and honesty” In short, it is setting rules for a process and then following these rules with integrity. To achieve integrity in the procurement process and to adhere to a publicly defensible process, DEEWR will do a number of things: DEEWR will ensure tenders are assessed objectively and consistently To achieve this, DEEWR will create and follow a Tender Evaluation Plan that is consistent with the rules set out in the Request for Tender. During the tender period, DEEWR will give the same information to all applicants – for example by placing an answer to a question about the tender on the DEEWR website and by recording the questions and answers from each Information Session and posting these on our website. DEEWR will also ensure the confidentiality and security of tender information DEEWR will ensure physical and technological security of all tenders. All tenders are treated as confidential for the duration of the procurement process. DEEWR will identify and address all conflicts of interest This applies to the tender evaluation process by DEEWR and State and Territory officers. A conflict of interest is where a person has a personal interest in a matter which is the subject of a decision by that person. Conflicts can be actual, perceived or potential. Conflict of interest is checked at various times throughout the tender assessment process to ensure nothing new arises during the period without being dealt with. And lastly, DEEWR will ensure accountability through creating an audit trail All decisions that form part of the process will be documented, including the reasons for the decision to support our accountability and transparency of decision-making. COAG • The Australian Government believes that education is a key element in building a just, participative and productive society in which young Australians are able to reach their full potential. • Difficult economic conditions have heightened the urgency to support young people, who are particularly vulnerable in periods of tight labour markets. • The Council of Australian Governments (COAG) has a number of Youth Attainment and Transition targets that provide the context in which Partnership Brokers will operate. These targets include: o achieving 90 per cent Year 12 or equivalent attainment by 2015 – this was originally a target for 2020 but recently COAG moved the target date forward to 2015; o halving the gap in Indigenous attainment by 2020; and o halving the proportion of the 20 to 64 year old population who do not hold qualifications at Certificate III level or above by 2020. • Two initiatives that COAG has put in place to support these goals are o the Compact with Young Australians; and o the National Partnership on Youth Attainment and Transitions. • We‟ll now discuss these initiatives in a little more detail. Compact with Young Australians • The Compact with Young Australians focuses on the importance of education and training for young people by supporting them to gain skills and knowledge through stronger engagement in education, training and employment. It comprises a number of elements: • The first element in the Compact with Young Australians is a National Youth Participation Requirement which includes a mandatory requirement for all young people under 17: o to participate in schooling (meaning in school or an approved equivalent) until they complete Year 10; and o where they have completed Year 10, to participate full-time (defined as at least 25 hours per week) in education, training or employment, or a combination of these activities, until age 17. • A second element in the Compact with Young Australians is an Education and Training Entitlement for young people. Under this element: o 15-19 year olds are entitled to an education or training place for any government-subsidised qualification, subject to admission requirements and course availability; and o 20-24 year olds are entitled to an education or training place for any government-subsidised qualification which would result in the individual attaining a higher qualification than they previously held, subject to admission requirements and course availability. • And a final element in the Compact with Young Australians is a Youth Allowance (Other) and Family Tax Benefit (Part A) participation requirement which makes full- time education or training a pre-condition for income support for young people under 21 who do not have Year 12 or an equivalent qualification. Full-time is defined for this particular requirement as 25 hours per week. • Changes regarding this last participation requirement came into effect on 1 July 2009 for new Youth Allowance (Other) claimants; and will come into effect on 1 January 2010 for all Family Tax Benefit Part A recipients and by 1 July 2010 for those who were receiving Youth Allowance (Other) prior to 1 July 2009. National Partnership on Youth Attainment and Transitions • COAG has signed a National Partnership on Youth Attainment and Transitions on the 2nd of July this year. The National Partnership commenced in July this year and extends until the 31st of December 2013. • This National Partnership focuses on the achievement of the COAG targets we discussed earlier and the Compact with Young Australians. • Under the National Partnership, the Commonwealth and the States and Territories will work together to put in place a range of immediate and longer term reforms to achieve two things: o Provide access to multiple learning pathways and keep young people engaged in their learning; and o Improve young people‟s transitions from school to further education, training or employment, and increase their active participation in their communities. • The National Partnership includes $100 million in funding to support the delivery of the Compact with Young Australians and to reward States and Territories for: o Improving rates of participation in school and VET by 2010; and o Improving Year 12 and equivalent attainment by 2012. • In addition, COAG agreed that, under the National Partnership, roles and responsibilities in the area of youth attainment and transitions would be clarified and that this would include: o The Commonwealth having primary responsibility for youth labour-market programs; o The States and Territories having primary responsibility for the delivery of education and training including Vocational Education in Schools work placements; and o The States and Territories progressively taking primary responsibility for all youth, careers and transitions programs. • The national landscape for youth, career and transition services for young people differs across jurisdictions in terms of scope, investment levels and delivery arrangements, and has not been strategically focussed. The current arrangements present young people with a patchy and confusing landscape of choices. There is duplication in some areas, as well as gaps in the suite of services provided. • To support the achievement of the COAG targets and to remove duplication and confusion, it was agreed that a range of the Commonwealth‟s current Youth, Career and Transition programs would be consolidated and streamlined in partnership with the States and Territories. • This streamlining of the Commonwealth‟s programs has resulted in the creation of the two new programs that are now up for tender – Partnership Brokers and Youth Connections. For much more detail, you can access a copy of the National Partnership Agreement by visiting the COAG website – www.coag.gov.au. Collaboration with States and Territories • In developing and implementing the new elements of the programs under the National Partnership, the Commonwealth is working closely with the States and Territories in a number of ways. • We are working to: o clarify the respective roles and responsibilities of Commonwealth and State and Territory governments; o reduce the duplication and overlap between Commonwealth and State and Territory programs and services, in order to make services easier to access for young people; o align the region boundaries for Commonwealth and State and Territory Government programs to support a joined-up services approach; o work together on program development, provider selection and program management; and o determine the outcomes to be demonstrated for a progressive shift of funding and responsibility for youth career and transition programs and services to the States and Territories. • It is therefore the case that each of the new Commonwealth programs – both Partnership Brokers and Youth Connections - are being implemented in different ways in every State and Territory. This has resulted in potentially different program arrangements, selection processes and additional Selection Criteria, and contract periods across the country. • Differences for Partnership Brokers in each State and Territory are addressed in Appendix C of the Partnership Brokers RFT. Later in this presentation we‟ll look at the NSW specific information. School Business Community Partnership Brokers Principles • Having considered the context in which the Partnership Brokers program was developed, we‟ll now move on to discussing the program itself, including looking at the principles on which it was developed, what the program is and the outcomes that Partnership Brokers will be expected to deliver, and then we‟ll look in detail at the specifics of the Request for Tender. • Before discussing the program in detail, I want to make one thing clear – no-one in this room is currently delivering the program that the Government is buying in this tender round. • This program is not just a revised version of any programs under the old Career Advice Australia banner. It does, of course, build on previous programs and evaluation outcomes, but it must be stressed – this is a completely new program and organisations who want to deliver this program will need to look carefully at their organisation and its capacity to deliver this program, including their structure and staff profile. Organisations who want to deliver this program will need to have staff with high level strategic, influencing and engagement skills. • The Partnership Brokers program is designed to support the COAG targets, the Compact with Young Australians and the National Partnership on Youth Attainment and Transitions. • Partnership Brokers was developed side by side with the Youth Connections program, and both programs are designed to work together to support the education and transition outcomes of young people. • Partnership Brokers was designed to build community capacity and infrastructure to support improved education and transition outcomes for all young people in a region, while Youth Connections provides a safety net for young people particularly at risk of disengaging from education or who have already disengaged. • For this reason, Service Regions have been aligned between Partnership Brokers and Youth Connections, with the expectation that providers of each program will work very closely together to meet the needs of that region, including working together to build the capacity of education and training providers in early identification and providing support for youth who are at risk of disengaging from education or who have already disengaged. • As Partnership Brokers will need to work so closely with Youth Connections providers, it is recommended that organisations wishing to apply for Partnership Broker business read the draft Youth Connections program guidelines to familiarise themselves with this program. These guidelines can be found on the DEEWR youth attainment and transitions website, which we‟ll give you the web address for at the end of this Information Session. • Partnership Brokers is a program designed around outcomes, rather than activities. This means that providers will be held accountable for their performance against a number of desirable outcomes in the region they cover, rather than having their performance based on specific activities they undertake. Later in the presentation we‟ll tell you a little more about these outcomes and how the performance on Partnership Brokers will be assessed. • The National Partnership, Partnership Brokers and Youth Connections were also developed to reduce duplication and confusion in programs that support youth attainment and transitions. It is hoped that by reducing this confusion, young people will find it simpler and easier to access the support they may require to improve their education and transition outcomes. Partnership Brokers and Youth Connections will have national coverage, so all young people will have access to these services. • Partnership Brokers was also designed keeping in mind the old saying that it takes a village to raise a child – meaning that the whole community is responsible for the education and transition outcomes of young people, which brings us neatly to what the Partnership Brokers program is all about. The Program • The Partnership Brokers program has been tailored to fit with what is already happening in each State and Territory. As a result, the program does not necessarily look exactly the same in each jurisdiction. Later in the presentation we will talk about the specifics of Partnership Brokers in NSW, but for now we‟ll talk about the program generically. • The Partnership Brokers program is designed to foster a strategic, whole of community approach to improving education and transition outcomes for young people. What does that mean? • “Strategic” means that a region‟s needs and unique conditions are taken into consideration when Partnership Brokers do their work, and that Partnership Brokers plan and prioritise how to best achieve the outcomes required under the program for all young people in their region. • “Whole of community” means that a range of stakeholders need to be included in efforts to improve the education and transition outcomes of young people. • When referring to education and transition outcomes, we mean things like: young people will be more engaged in learning, their marks will improve, their learning experiences will be more meaningful, and they will be effectively equipped to make multiple transitions successfully over the course of their lives – this includes transitions from education to other education or training or work. • This is not just wishful thinking: available evidence clearly demonstrates the benefit that strong, sustainable, mutually beneficial partnerships between schools, business and community have on the education and transition outcomes for young people. • Partnership Brokers will need to be strategic organisations with the local knowledge and networks to drive change in their community. • Partnership Brokers will also need to be effective influencers, working with high-level stakeholders within a region to influence strategic planning and to ensure that the partnerships they broker are sustainable and well placed to contribute to education and transition outcomes for young people. • Partnership Brokers will employ staff with the capacity to engage with and influence all key stakeholder groups that you see listed here – education and training providers, business and industry, families and parents, and community groups. More than just engaging with these stakeholders, Partnership Brokers will actively work to develop and support partnerships between two or more of these stakeholders groups. • Partnership Brokers will facilitate stakeholder engagement through a range of mechanisms, such as facilitating small meetings between key stakeholders or organising larger-scale networking forums. • Partnership Brokers will be expected to help build the capacity of stakeholders within the community to create and maintain partnerships themselves, thereby reducing dependence on the Partnership Broker role over time and resulting in a broader infrastructure in the region that supports learning and transition outcomes. • As partnerships become self-sustaining, the Partnership Broker will have capacity to explore other partnership opportunities within their region. • Partnership Brokers will need to be proactive – through their in-depth understanding of the environment in their region they should work with stakeholders to develop strategies that address current and future needs of a region. • For instance, in a region with a declining industry, Partnership Brokers might work with key stakeholders to develop strategies for training young people in the skills required to respond to a diversifying industry profile within a region. • Or in an area with an emerging industry, the Partnership Brokers might broker a partnership between schools, other training providers and industry to ensure that the students and teachers understand the opportunities presented by this new industry and the pathways that young people could follow to become involved. • Partnership Brokers should also work responsively, responding to an identified need in the community. For instance, a community provider may identify the need for mentoring for a particular group of disadvantaged young people. A Partnership Broker may work with the community provider to identify key stakeholders in the area with capacity to provide mentoring and facilitate a partnership between these stakeholders and the community provider. • Partnership Brokers should not operate alone. DEEWR expects providers to collaborate and share best practice, and to support this, DEEWR will fund Partnership Brokers network meetings at jurisdictional and national levels. • State, Territory and national Partnership Broker network meetings will support an integrated approach to the delivery of Partnership Brokers services and quality outcomes for the program. • Through these networks, Partnership Brokers will also build linkages with relevant national employers and industry bodies, such as Industry Skills Councils and Skills Australia, to identify current, emerging and future development needs. The networks will also develop linkages with relevant national community and education organisations. These linkages will support Partnership Brokers to achieve outcomes in their regions. Outcomes and Performance Measurement • Partnership Brokers will be measured by the outcomes they deliver, rather than the activities they undertake. • Partnership Brokers‟ success will be judged on the effectiveness of the partnerships they create in improving the educational and transition outcomes for young people in their region - and the quality of the partnerships they broker, including stakeholders‟ capacity to sustain those partnerships. • In summary, the key outcomes expected of Partnership Brokers are: o The first outcome is: Regional solutions will be developed that address the needs of a region and involve a number of stakeholder groups to improve young people‟s education and transition outcomes. For instance, in an area with a high number of humanitarian refugees, a Partnership Broker might work with schools, other education providers, business and industry, refugee parents and families and relevant community groups such as NGOs to develop partnerships that support the children of refugees to negotiate and succeed in the education system. o In another region, the Partnership Broker may identify a lack of opportunities for parents and families to access up-to-date information about career opportunities and the education and training pathways available to young people. A Partnership Broker could build a partnership between a group that represents parents, business and industry representatives, education and training providers and a local radio station to hold a regular talkback session with a panel, to discuss issues related to the region and young people‟s transition from school to further education and training and work. o The second outcome is: Education and training providers partnering with stakeholders in their community to ensure all young people participate in challenging, relevant and engaging learning that broadens personal aspirations and improves education and transition outcomes. This means that Partnership Brokers will be working with a range of education providers including secondary and primary schools, as well as other education providers. o The third outcome is: Business and industry being actively engaged in sustainable partnerships that support the development of young people, contribute to the skills and knowledge of the future workforce and improve young people‟s education and transition outcomes. o The fourth outcome is: Parents and families participating in partnerships to provide an informed and supportive environment for all young people. These partnerships will enable lifelong learning and career and pathway planning, and improve young people‟s education and transition outcomes. o And the fifth outcome is: Community groups engaging with key stakeholders in partnerships that harness resources and build social capital to support young people to identify and achieve their goals and improve their education and transition outcomes. • Emerging from this overview of Partnership Brokers and the outcomes they are expected to achieve, you can see a dynamic picture emerging of a region where high-quality partnerships are established that support and facilitate the education and transition outcomes of young people: making their learning experiences more meaningful, growing their awareness of options for the future, building their skills to succeed in the workforce of the future and enhancing their contribution to the productivity of the nation. • You will have noticed that I have not talked about Partnership Brokers delivering services directly to young people. As I said, we are looking for high-level, strategic organisations who can influence and work with the key stakeholder groups that support the education and transition outcomes of young people. I also said we will be measuring Partnership Brokers performance on the outcomes they deliver, not the activities they undertake. We are looking for Partnership Brokers to create strategic partnerships. • In some circumstances, a Partnership Broker might decide in collaboration with other stakeholders in their region, that the best way for this to happen in their region is for them to have a more direct role in service delivery for a short period of time, to drive change or demonstrate to potential partners the benefits of a partnership approach. However, Partnership Brokers are not expected, nor are they resourced, to be involved in ongoing service delivery, and any improvements in education and transition outcomes that the Key Performance Measures (KPMs) will measure are those that are created by a partnership, not any that a Partnership Broker may directly deliver. In all cases Partnership Brokers should be undertaking work that supports outcomes by building partnerships and the capacity of stakeholders rather than creating dependency on the Partnership Broker role. Outcome Framework • As I said, a Partnership Broker‟s success will be judged on the effectiveness of the partnerships they broker in improving the educational and transition outcomes for young people in their region - and the quality of those partnerships, including stakeholders‟ capacity to sustain those partnerships. But how will we measure that? • On the screen is a table indicating the structure for the Education and Training Provider Outcome as an example. • This table is a small excerpt from the Draft Monitoring, Evaluation and Reporting Framework that is at Appendix G of the Partnership Brokers RFT. This framework gives more detail on the outcomes expected of Partnership Brokers and how this will be measured. Note however that the document is still a draft and work is continuing on it, but it does give DEEWR‟s current views on how the outcome framework will operate for Partnership Brokers. • Going back to the example on the screen, the outcomes that I mentioned are broad, high level statements about what the program is trying to achieve. We have developed Indicators that describe the types of things you would expect to see if the Partnership Broker program is achieving the Outcomes. • As you can see, sitting below this are the Key Performance Measures – these are more detailed and allow us to assess the effectiveness of individual providers and the program. If the KPMs are being achieved, we are seeking to infer that the Indicators are happening and that therefore progress is being made toward the higher level outcomes. • An outcomes framework necessarily involves inferential leaps from things that can be measured to higher level outcomes that are harder to measure. • It is expected that the KPMs will be the foundation for provider reporting about the quality and effectiveness of partnerships they have facilitated. • The Department is developing a new IT system, which will underpin the reporting the Partnership Brokers will need to do against the KPMs. This IT system is also being designed to assist Partnership Brokers to record as well as manage their work, with the aim being to reduce paperwork required at the end of a reporting period as it would primarily have been entered throughout the course of a Partnership Broker‟s interactions with stakeholders while brokering and supporting a partnership. • As I said before, you can read in more detail about these Outcomes, the Indicators and the KPMs in the Draft Partnership Broker Monitoring, Evaluation and Reporting Framework at Appendix G of the RFT documentation. Service Fees and Payments • Moving on from what Partnership Brokers do and the outcomes they are expected to achieve, we‟ll now look at some of the other relevant information included in the Request for Tender, starting with service fees and payments. • The Request for Tender documentation includes a fixed service fee for Partnership Brokers in each Service Region across the country. The Service Fee for each Service Region is set and the fees differ across regions, so organisations seeking to apply for the Partnership Broker role in a specific Service Region will need to work out how they would use the fee allocated for that region to deliver against the outcomes required. • The funding allocation for the Partnership Broker program in each State and Territory as a whole was agreed by COAG. How this funding was allocated to each Service Region was calculated using a range of factors. • The service fee allocation was negotiated separately with each State and Territory for Service Regions in their jurisdiction, so there are slight differences in methodology between the States and Territories but the same basic principles were applied. • In NSW each Service Region received $200,000 base funding. • Using NSW DET data a number of regional constraints were taken into account when determining the Service Fees including: o the number of 10-19 year olds in each Service Region, using Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) data o Retention rates – this was calculated by using the inverse of the apparent retention rate using DET administrative data. • Service fees can be found at Appendix D of the Partnership Brokers RFT. • Payments to contracted providers will be paid biannually in advance. • For the first year of service provision, 50% of the service fee will be paid after the contract is executed and 50% will be paid at the end of July, contingent on successful performance against the program‟s regional and stakeholder level outcomes. • In subsequent years, and again contingent on effective performance against the outcomes, payments of 50% of the annual service fee will be made at the end of January and the end of July. • For more information on payments, please refer to Section 1.4 of the Partnership Brokers RFT. NSW Specific Information NSW Youth Attainment and Transitions Service Regions • As stated previously, the Partnership Broker program has been tailored to fit with what is already happening in each State and Territory. As a result, different methodologies have been applied to determine Service Region boundaries in each jurisdiction. • There are 114 Service Regions nationally, with 108 Partnership Brokers covering the nation (some regions have been combined in South Australia and Western Australia for Partnership Brokers, meaning there are slightly fewer Partnership Brokers than there are Service Regions). • The Service Regions are shared between Youth Connections and Partnership Brokers. • DEEWR has collaborated with NSW DET, the Catholic Education Commission NSW and the Association of Independent Schools NSW to determine the Service Regions. • The Service Regions in NSW are based on the 10 DET School Regions that align with TAFE regions. • These 10 Regions have been divided into smaller provider regions (most were split into 3) to ensure both geographical spread and that school clusters are maintained and viable. • There will be 30 Service Regions in NSW. NSW Specific Information • Here is a quick look at the map showing the Service Regions in NSW. • Maps of the Service Regions are at Appendix H of the RFT documentation. This Appendix can be downloaded from the AusTender website or the DEEWR youth attainment and transitions website. • NSW Schools by Youth Attainment and Transitions Service Region (Appendix I) is included as a separate document on AusTender and can be downloaded from the AusTender website at: www.tenders.gov.au. • Please note that this list presents an indicative mapping of New South Wales schools to Youth Attainment and Transitions Service Regions and may be subject to modification and/or review by the Department. NSW Specific Information Contract arrangements for NSW • In NSW, contracts with the Commonwealth will be offered to successful applicants for a two year period in the first instance, with the option of review to extend for one year and potentially a further one year. • Whether the Australian Government elects to exercise the option to extend will depend upon NSW‟s progress towards the National Partnership outcomes. Where the NSW Government can demonstrate achievement of outcomes agreed under their National Partnership Implementation Plan, and agrees to accept funding for the Partnership Brokers program, funding will be transferred to the NSW Government. • If funding for the program is transferred to NSW, there is no requirement for the NSW Government to continue the specific program. If the program ceases, the project funding has to be used for additional career and transition support services in NSW. Eligibility Partnership Brokers must be: • To be eligible to tender for business for the School Business Community Partnership Broker program, tenderers must be: o incorporated; and o locally operated • Partnership Brokers must be incorporated bodies prior to signing a contract unless otherwise agreed by the Department. • Partnership Brokers must maintain business premises within the nominated Service Region and employ personnel who operate from premises within the Service Region to deliver Partnership Brokers services. • Tenderers must provide details of whether they meet these eligibility requirements at Section 1 of the Tender Response Form (which is Appendix B of the Partnership Brokers RFT). • Tenderers must also complete the Financial Viability Questionnaire at Section 3 of the Tender Response Form. It is expected that providers will be financially viable organisations, however if a contract is signed with an organisation assessed by DEEWR as at a higher risk financially than deemed acceptable then alternate contractual terms may be required. Partnership Brokers Request for Tender (RFT) Applications • Partnership Brokers is a program that encourages organisations working together with other stakeholders in their region to develop the best application that suits the needs of the whole region. This may include partnering with other organisations to fulfil all requirements of Partnership Brokers. We expect that in particular, smaller „niche‟ providers may wish to work together and put in a single application for their region. • The Tender Response Form (Appendix B of the RFT) requires tenderers to outline any proposed consortium or sub-contracting arrangements. • Just to clearly define these, consortium arrangements involve a number of separate legal entities joining together to lodge a joint application to provide a service. If successful, one of the organisations must act as the lead organisation in order to enter into a contract with the Commonwealth. The lead organisation must be able to legally bind the other organisations to comply with this contract. The other organisations must declare to the Commonwealth separately that they agree to be legally bound under the arrangement. • Sub-contracting involves a lead organisation applying for and gaining a contract in its own right but then sub-contracting some of the work out to other, separate organisations after the contract is executed. • In a consortium, all organisations have legal obligations to the Commonwealth (as determined by the arrangements), whereas in a subcontracting arrangement, only the lead organisation can be held responsible by the Commonwealth under the contract to perform the obligations in the contract. • While talking about consortium or sub-contracting arrangements, it should be noted that a region wide and strategic approach will be required. A consortium could be established to ensure that delivery includes expertise in engaging all stakeholder groups, or to ensure delivery covers the entire Service Region. In all cases, consortiums must demonstrate a coordinated, holistic approach to meeting the needs of the region. A consortium that proposes splitting of the Service Region needs to demonstrate how this will contribute to achieving the program outcomes in their region. This is a requirement under Selection Criterion 3 which I will talk about later. • While talking about consortium or sub-contracting arrangements, it should be noted that the new service the Australian Government is buying does not lend itself to the splitting of Service Regions for delivery purposes. In brokering partnerships, a region wide and strategic approach will be required. A consortium could be established to ensure that delivery includes expertise in engaging all stakeholder groups, however an approach that tried to split delivery into parts of the region would not be viewed favourably. Remember the new program arrangements were partly built around the concept of reducing duplication and confusion, splitting regions would not fulfil this aim. Partnership Brokers Request for Tender (RFT) Key Documents • The Partnership Brokers RFT includes a number of key documents and if you are interested in applying for Partnership Brokers business you should ensure you download and read them all. • The key documents include: o The RFT itself – this gives you important information about the tender – including the program description, the conditions of the tender, the Selection Criteria and submission requirements, amongst other things. o The Tender Compliance Checklist which is Appendix A of the RFT and Tender Response Form which is Appendix B of the RFT – organisations will need to complete the entire Tender Response Form and then should refer to the Tender Compliance Checklist before lodging their application. Appendix B, the Tender Response Form, has an Attachment A which is at the end of the RFT document – this Attachment is a template for the Environmental Scan required in one of the Selection Criteria (which I‟ll talk about in more detail shortly). o State/Territory Specific Program Information which is Appendix C of the RFT – this outlines any specific information relevant to each State and Territory in terms of program parameters and requirements, and contract periods. o Service fees by Service Region are at Appendix D of the RFT. o A draft services contract is included at Appendix E of the RFT – this is a blank template for services contracts with DEEWR. The final contract will be negotiated with successful tenderers. o Draft Program Guidelines and the draft Monitoring, Evaluation and Reporting Framework are Appendices F and G – it is vital that organisations interested in delivering this program read these documents carefully to more fully understand the nature of the program, the outcomes providers will be expected to achieve, and how provider performance will be assessed. It should be noted that these are draft documents only and successful providers may be included in further development work on these documents. o Service Region maps are included at Appendix H of the RFT. o Appendix I is relevant to organisations wishing to apply for business in NSW as it lists the schools in each Service Region in NSW. Tender Response Form • The Tender Response Form has three sections. You must complete all sections of the Tender Response Form, in the form itself. This includes attaching any material required for the Financial Viability Questionnaire, and signing the declarations in both Sections B and C. • This is important, as an incomplete Tender Response Form may be deemed non- compliant and precluded from assessment in the tender process. • There is a Tender Compliance Checklist at Appendix A that will assist you to ensure that you have met all the compliance requirements. Partnership Brokers Request for Tender (RFT) Selection Criteria • The Selection Criteria for the Partnership Brokers tender are at Section 2.4 of the RFT document. • Tenders must address all Selection Criteria – namely Criterion 1, 2 and 3. In addition, please note that some States and Territories have included an additional Criterion, Criterion 4, which must also be addressed. For State or Territory specific Selection Criteria, refer to Appendix C in the Partnership Brokers RFT. • Responses to each Selection Criterion must not exceed five pages in length. Formatting has to be A4 size, single sided and Arial 11 point font. • As part of the response to Criterion 2, tenderers are required to complete an Environmental Scan using the Environmental Scan Template provided at Attachment A of the Tender Response Form. The Environmental Scan is limited to 10 pages (A4 size, single sided and Arial 11 point font). This is in addition to the five page limit for Criterion 2. • Criterion 3 requires tenderers to detail planned expenditure of service fees for the relevant contract period and outline how this will support the achievement of Partnership Broker program outcomes. This must be completed using the pro forma provided in the Tender Response Form (this in addition to the five page response limit for Criterion 3). Partnership Brokers Request for Tender (RFT) Selection Criteria for NSW Service Regions • Information about the Selection Criteria can be found at Section 2.4 of the Partnership Brokers RFT. You should read the Selection Criteria carefully, as they provide a lot more detail than I am going into here today. • The Selection Criteria are weighted. You will notice there are a number of elements that should be addressed under each Criterion, however please note that the weighting applies to the whole of a Criterion – not the individual elements within. This means a tenderer may be weak on a particular element, but still perform well on the Criterion as a whole, depending on their response to the other elements. • The RFT document also states that the elements under each Selection Criterion should be addressed at a minimum. This means that you are able to include other information in your response to a Criterion that you feel is relevant to responding to that Criterion. • Criterion 1 is about a tenderer‟s experience and ability in relationship management and partnership development. This is weighted at 40% because it is critical to the Partnership Brokers role. The Department will be looking for organisations that can develop relationships with and between all the stakeholder groups, and that partnerships developed are able to deliver the program outcomes. • Criterion 2 is about a tenderer‟s strategic planning and implementation capability and experience. It is also weighted 40% because it is critical to the Partnership Broker role. The Department will be looking for organisations that know the needs of the region and can react to them in a high level, strategic way. Included in the response to this Criterion is the completion of an environmental scan, which asks tenderers to look at a region, its needs, possible solutions that a Partnership Broker might implement in response to the region‟s needs and sources that were used in developing the scan. • Criterion 3, which is weighted 20%, is about a tenderer‟s proposed management and governance structures. The Department is not prescribing how organisations are structured to deliver this program, however organisations will need to show how their structure will effectively and efficiently achieve the program outcomes. A pro forma on the proposed use of Service Fees needs to be completed as part of the response to this Criterion. • There is no Criterion 4 in NSW. • You should note that a tender which is rated unsuitable or unsatisfactory against one or more of these Criteria may be excluded from further consideration on the tender process. In responding to the Criteria, you should not assume that the Department knows your organisation or what you can do. It is essential that you include all relevant information in your responses to the Selection Criteria. Partnership Brokers Request for Tender (RFT) Timeframes and submission requirements • Tenders must be lodged with DEEWR no later than 4.00 pm Australian Eastern Daylight Saving Time (AEDST) on the 6th of October 2009. Tenders must be lodged using the Tender Response Form found at Appendix B of the RFT document. • Tenderers must provide one original hardcopy tender plus an electronic copy of the tender on CD or memory stick. In the event that the hard copy and electronic copy are different, the electronic copy will be the version of the application that is assessed. • All tender material must be submitted to the place of lodgement by the deadline. • Tender documents must be enclosed in a sealed envelope or other sealed container. The envelope or container must be clearly marked with the RFT Number (also called the PRN in the RFT documentation) and addressed to the location for lodgement (you should refer to Section 4 of the RFT document for detailed information about lodging tenders). • If you are submitting a tender for multiple Service Regions, or for both Partnership Brokers and Youth Connections in the same Service Region, you must complete a separate Tender Response Form for each, and submit it in a separate envelope or container. And please note, if you are applying for Youth Connections, you will of course need to use the RFT documentation for that program as the Youth Connections Tender Response Form is different to the Partnership Brokers Tender Response Form. • The envelope containing your Partnership Brokers tender must also be clearly labelled with the following details: o Organisation name; o The State or Territory you are applying for; and o The Service Region you are applying for. • When reading the RFT you will see that no supplementary material is to be provided with the RFT application, apart from the required proforma. If supplementary material is supplied, it will not be read or assessed so please don‟t include anything additional to the requirements as stipulated. • But please note, that the Department may take into account a tenderers‟ past performance in their delivery of any State, Territory or Australian Government program. There is a question on the Tender Response Form where you are asked to provide details of past experience providing similar services and the contact details for referees. • Please note that current DEEWR employees cannot provide referee reports for tenderers. • It is anticipated that successful tenderers will be announced in December to commence services on 1 January 2010. Registering with AusTender • AusTender is the online tendering system for Australian Government agencies. Organisations wishing to tender for Partnership Brokers are required to register with AusTender to access all RFT documentation and information. Tenderers can register with AusTender at: o https://www.tenders.gov.au • RFT documentation includes the key documents discussed earlier in this presentation. • All queries and requests for technical or operational support in relation to AusTender should be directed to the AusTender Help Desk: o Telephone: 1300 651 698 o Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Further Information • Further information can be obtained from the DEEWR youth attainment and transitions website – the address for this is www.deewr.gov.au/Youth/YouthAttainmentandTransitions • You can also email email@example.com with questions during the tender period. Note however that your email will be acknowledged, however responses to the question will be posted publicly on the DEEWR website. • Questions and answers from this Information Session and the other sessions being run around the country this week and next will also be compiled and posted on the DEEWR website as soon as possible after the Information Sessions have finished so that everyone has access to the same information during the tender process. Questions • That concludes the formal part of the presentation, now we have some time available for questions. • Please note that I may not be able to answer all your questions now, there maybe some I need to take on notice, in which case the answers will be provided on DEEWR‟s website as soon as possible after all the Information Sessions have concluded. • Finally, if you haven‟t already registered for this session, please make sure you do so on your way out.
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