Liquor & Gaming NSW has begun the next step in its mandate to maintain industry competency and keep employees up to date, announcing a move to compulsory online refresher courses.

The regulator requires that person who work in the service of alcohol or gaming business are required to hold an active RSA and/or RCG authority.

It been phasing out the old-school paper certificates since it began issuing five-year photo competency cards in August 2011. The last of the paper certs will expire 30 June, 2016, and the first photo competency cards will begin to expire from 22 August.

It will now be compulsory for people working in relevant positions to undertake an online ‘refresher’ course in order to renew their competency card. Holders will be required to pay a prescribed $35 fee to undertake refresher training with a certified provider.

This must be done prior to the old card’s expiry, but will not extend the expiry date. After the training, individuals will be issued with a new five-year competency card. This will be the only way that a competency card can be renewed.

The notion of ‘refresher training’ came out of the 2013 independent review of the Liquor Act, with aim to keep skills up to date in an evolving and legislative industry.

Andrew Lewis
Andrew Lewis

“Online refresher or recap training, in particular RSA and RCG, is probably the most important training pubs can invest in,” Allara Learning CEO Andrew Lewis told PubTIC.

“Untrained staff place the entire business at risk of huge fines, loss of licence and even closures. Regular online training is an easy and cost-effective method of training staff and minimising these risks.”

Allara has built a name for itself offering specialist training for hospitality and business in Australia, incorporating Tactical Training Group and WG Learning. Lewis notes the advantages for dynamic industries such as hospitality.

“Not only does it save a huge amount of time and money to train online, it’s becoming much easier for pubs to ensure their business and staff are compliant at all times,” he said.

Existing holders of expiring photo competency cards will be contacted by text or email to remind them to undertake online refresher training prior to their card expiry date.

Employers are encouraged to remind staff to ensure contact details are up to date and the online refresher training is completed prior to their current photo competency card expiring.

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