Subject Matter Experts shaping industry qualifications

The work of Technical Advisory Committees (TACs) is integral to ensure the work proposed by Industry Reference Committees (IRCs), on behalf on the industry they represent, truly meets the needs of industry. TAC’s are of comprised of subject matter experts from industry and their work is vital to ensuring the skills of your workforce are not only contemporary but also future focussed.

Sandra Lunardi, Director of Workforce Development, Australasian Fire and Emergency Service Authorities Council (AFAC), member of the Public Safety IRC and formally the Co-Chair of the Fire and Public Safety TACs has highlighted the importance of the role played by TACs.

“In my experience the most effective vehicle for influencing and shaping an industry’s qualifications is through representative and committed TACs. Actively engaging in stimulating debate with experts from different parts of industry is the best way to achieve robust workplace outcomes”.

Vicki Kent, Specialist, Learning and Development – Rail at Rio Tinto and Rail IRC Chair echoes these sentiments.

“The importance of the process and the role TACs play is apparent in the work currently being undertaken for the Rail IRC. Automation has arrived in Rail and requires a rapid response from the National Training System to support new technology and new roles. The IRC identified these needs and tasked the TAC to develop an outcome that supports the industry and workers in the symbiotic relationship they have. The IRC and TAC work hand in glove together to ensure a responsive, representative outcome, providing standardised quality products for industry and ensuring Australia’s progress and growth”.

There are currently 43 TACs, comprising 448 members, working on AISC commissioned projects across the 11 IRCs that AIS supports.

What are TACs?

To assist with a Training Package development project, an IRC can establish one or more Technical Advisory Committees (TACs). TACs are made up of people from a specific industry sector with subject matter expertise and assist the IRC with the project by providing technical input to the review and development of Training Packages.

A TAC may include technical or subject matter experts from industry, industry associations, regulators and training providers, and usually consist of a group of five to 15 members.

TACs may meet face to face or by video/teleconference during the life of a project. Typically, this is over a 3 to 9-month period.

Participation on TACs is voluntary and there is no remuneration. It represents a part of industry’s ‘in-kind contribution’ to the operation of a robust national VET system.

Role of a TAC

  • Provide specialist industry subject-matter knowledge regarding the project topic to the review and development of Units of Competency, qualifications and Skill Sets
  • Validate the technical content of the Training Packages products
  • Identify relevant qualitative and quantitative data sources to inform the development of draft materials
  • Review feedback from stakeholders taken through public consultations
  • Assist in identifying and engaging broader industry networks to participate in consultation and/or validation activities during the duration of the project
  • Offer advice and guidance to assist in informing the direction of the project throughout its duration.
  • Make recommendations on the developed Training Package materials to the relevant IRC, which has the final decision-making authority

How is a TAC formed?

An IRC establishes a TAC through a public nomination process, facilitated by AIS via stakeholder communications.

The IRC will select candidates with the required subject matter knowledge and expertise

Why become a TAC member – what’s in it for you

You will be contributing your expertise to develop high quality, future focused industry qualifications

Working with other TAC members can enhance your professional knowledge and develop your industry networks

And it will look good on your CV!

How to become a TAC member

AIS, on behalf of the IRCs we support is seeking Expressions of Interest from industry stakeholders to participate in TACs for future TP development projects.

To register your interest in becoming a TAC member, please email the following to

  • your contact details
  • the industry sector you are interested in contributing to
  • a brief outline of your skills and experience (no more than 300 words)