Review of SCP Australia assessments
By the end of June 2016, SCP Australia had assessed 32 applications over 6 rounds, with each round running every quarter. The process of assessment takes approximately three months and includes sending out summary lists of applicants to regulators for comment, running assessor workshops, teleconferences for assessment panel meetings and interviews of applicants where required.
Of the 32 applications reviewed, 16 have been recommended for certification and 16 have not been recommended.
Of applicants recommended for certification, 6 were recommended after undergoing an interview, while 10 were recommended based on their competency statements in their written application (Refer Graphic 1).
As at June 30, 2016, the scheme had 34 accredited environmental auditors who are SCP Australia certified practitioners (Graphic 2). These auditors are invited to join an assessment subcommittee at every round and many do participate in the assessment process. This is beneficial for the scheme in a number of ways:
- It brings creditability to the scheme as accredited environmental auditors have the expertise and experience to review applications
- Facilitates auditor feedback and input into the SCP Australia scheme, to improve the process and standard of assessments;
- Provides an insight into the mechanics of the scheme for auditors who can then inform other practitioners who might be interested in certification about the process and standards.
The largest number of SCP Australia certified practitioners is found in NSW and VIC. Graphic 3 shows all SCP Australia certified practitioners in blue and red.
Questions were asked as to whether the more experience an applicant has (beyond the minimum 5 years) the better the applicant would be able to respond to the SCP Australia competencies. However, looking at data from applications on years of experience contrast against applicant outcomes, there are no obvious patterns (Graphic 4). This could be the result of poor application preparation on part of the applicant.
This leads to the second question of whether an applicant’s experience means they are more likely to get an interview. There appears to be no pattern to indicate this, confirming the application process relies on an applicant’s ability to address the competency statements (Graphic 5).
To be recommended for certification, applicants need to achieve a Proficient level for Competencies 1,2,3 and 6. For Competency 4 and 5 a Functional level is considered sufficient. Only about 45% of applications were rated as being proficient or advanced when looking at responses for Competency Three- Detailed Site Assessment which was the competency with the lowest percentage of applicants meeting required levels for recommendation (Graphic 6).
The competencies with the lowest proficient and advanced levels were in Competency 4- risk assessment. However, to be recommended for certification only a Functional level is required, reflecting the highly specialised nature of risk assessment (Graphic 7).
When considering the number of competency levels applicants meet across their application, we find that 7 applicants who were not recommended only met 1 or 2 competency levels in their written application (Graph 8 ).
Applicants who met three or more competency levels in their written applications are likely to be interviewed, though this was not always the case (Graph 9.). Two applicants who met 5 competencies in their written application but were not recommended after interview highlight the need for applicants to meet all competency requirements to be recommended for certification. In this instance the 2 competencies not met were: Competency three- Detailed site assessment and Competency Six- Professional practice.
To be recommended for certification, applicants need to achieve a Proficient level for Competencies 1,2,3 and 6. And Functional level for Competencies 4 and 5 as illustrated in the table below (Graphic 10.);
To assist assessors in defining each of these four levels the following table matrix is utilised when reviewing competency statements. The assessment process is not a deductive automated process, but does require the experience of assessors who are accredited environmental auditors (Graphic 11.).
If you have any questions or concerns regarding this information, please contact the Executive Officer SCP Australia on firstname.lastname@example.org or call: (08) 8302 3933