Training for international freight forwarders in Australia is about to get a major boost as a result of work being undertaken by the Customs Brokers and Forwarders Council of Australia (CBFCA) championing the development of a new range of nationally-recognised qualifications in international freight forwarding.
Historically, international freight forwarders’ qualifications have been an adaptation of other transport-related qualifications and, while the industry Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) have been able to make do with this situation, there has not been a qualification that truly reflects the important role that international freight forwarders play in the international trade and logistics sector in Australia.
The CBFCA has sought to rectify that shortcoming through supporting work being done with the Transport and Logistics Industry Skills Council (TLISC) to firstly create a specialised set of qualifications at Certificate level III and level IV, and then to extend these qualifications to the development of Diploma course for the future managers of the industry.
The Certificate III and IV qualifications reflect the need for role-specific and well-structured training for both new and experienced members of the international freight forwarding industry in Australia. To date such training has been conducted using a transport and logistics qualification that requires RTOs to create a freight forwarding context within a generic qualification. This is hardly an ideal situation and it makes it hard to market the international freight forwarding industry without a specifically titled set of qualifications. As Bill Murphy, the CBFCA’s manager professional development and training said: “The proposed new qualification will show the name of the profession in the title – for example, the Certificate IV in International Freight Forwarding – and the contents of the training will be targeted to add the greatest value to industry and enhance the professional ability of those who complete it.”
The qualifications are currently about to enter the endorsement phase through the National Quality Council and are scheduled to be ready for delivery in 2010.
“Subject to the relevant endorsements, the CBFCA, as an RTO, will be a co-provider of this new qualification and is proud to partner with Future Force, a leading industry RTO and recruitment company, in bringing this exciting new qualification to industry,” said Mr Murphy. Partnering with Future Force enables the CBFCA to offer the Certificate IV as part of a federally funded traineeship for eligible existing employees, whereby employers seeking to up-skill their staff may be able to access Federal funding to assist with training costs.
Again, subject to relevant endorsements, students who have completed or who are undertaking customs broking studies through the existing CBFCA National Customs Brokers Course will have the option to complete a Certificate IV in International Freight Forwarding by completing additional units of competency through Future Force. Mr Richard Pierse, a director of Future Force commented that this exciting development also allows students completing an international freight forwarding course with Future Force to add the customs broking units of study as part of the electives within the new qualification: “In partnering with the CBFCA, Future Force can now provide a synergistic range of skills that provides options never before available. It’s a win-win for the students and the industry,” said Mr Pierse.
Senior managers have not been forgotten, either, with the development of these new qualifications. The CBFCA has carefully considered the role of current and upcoming managers within the industry through the development of the Diploma in International Freight Forwarding, a new qualification also expected to be ready for delivery by 2010.
Sponsored by the CBFCA, the new qualification will meet the requirements of industry for high level technical skills as well as the people management skills required of persons in these senior roles. The CBFCA is working with FIATA (the association of international freight forwarding organisations with which the CBFCA is affiliated) to ensure that the Australian Diploma meets the requirements for FIATA to award its much-coveted FIATA Diploma.
“The FIATA Diploma is the most highly recognised qualification for international freight forwarders worldwide”, said Mr Murphy. “The completion of the Australian Diploma of International Freight Forwarding opens up a large number of career opportunities for Australian graduates to enter the global market of international freight forwarders and from there, the sky’s the limit.”