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Navigating the Landscape: Insights from the 2024 Voice of VET Industry Survey

In our fifth annual survey, we engaged with senior leaders from Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) across Australia to gain valuable insights into the challenges and opportunities shaping the vocational education and training (VET) sector. With responses from 276 leading providers, this comprehensive report delves into the current state of the industry, shedding light on key areas such as business and management, digital transformation, learning and training, and the usage of Student Management and Learning Management Systems. 

Business & Management: Optimism and Challenges  

The survey engaged 111 CEOs and Directors, providing a snapshot of the industry's sentiments. Despite challenges with staffing, skills, and rising costs, the outlook is optimistic. Other respondents from RTOs revealed that while average student enrolments experienced a slight dip in 2023, close to half of the RTOs expect revenue growth in 2024. However, profitability, attracting new enrolments, and operational margins pose ongoing concerns. 

Digital Transformation & AI: Navigating the Tech Landscape  

Digital strategies are gaining prominence in the VET sector, with cyber security as well as artificial intelligence taking centre stage. Although confidence in cyber readiness is high, a notable gap exists in AI strategy, as 80% of RTOs admitted to having no plan in place but they do see it as an opportunity. While most acknowledge the importance of digital transformation, insufficient funding remains a hurdle. Leaders view AI as an opportunity, especially in course content, management, and student experience, showcasing a potential avenue for growth. 

Learning & Training: The Evolution of Delivery Models  

The shift to classroom training post-COVID-19 reflects a balanced approach, with RTOs valuing both face-to-face and online delivery models. The demand for accredited VET courses remains steady, emphasising the importance of skill development. Notably, improving staff talent, engaging with employers and industry, and enhancing student employment outcomes are key priorities. Despite the return to classroom training, online delivery remains a scalable and viable option. 

Student Management System: Streamlining Compliance and Operations  

The Student Management System (SMS) landscape is dominated by a few key players, with ReadyTech emerging as a leader. The overall satisfaction with SMS is high, with a focus on strong and adequate compliance as well as a seamless student experience. Compliance reporting, admissions and enrolment, and learning management are also highlighted as crucial functions, contributing to the system's perceived value. 

Learning Management System: Stability Amidst Change  

While the VET sector experienced a shift towards increased online delivery, the Learning Management System (LMS) market remains stable. aXcelerate and Moodle lead the pack, with the majority of providers expressing satisfaction with their current LMS. The stability of the LMS market is evident, as two-thirds of providers plan to stick with their current system over the next year. 

As we look forward to the upcoming year, Voice of VET 2024 provides a comprehensive overview of the challenges and opportunities faced by vocational education providers in Australia. As the sector continues to evolve, embracing digital transformation and adapting to changing delivery models will be crucial. The insights from this report not only highlight the current landscape but also serve as a guide for RTOs to navigate the complexities and seize opportunities for growth in the ever-changing VET landscape.

Click below to read our full Voice of VET report below!