Table Of Contents

Accreditation of Adviser and Consultant Practitioners – Workshop

Facilitators: David O’Sullivan (Dosaqua) and Dennis Toohey (Dennis E Toohey & Associates)

Accreditation of professionals situation

1. Existing schemes operated by


b. Tertiary education institutions

c. Public sector agencies

2. Performance by reputation, eg word of mouth

3. Performance assessed by association

In summary present schemes have a low image and are undervalued

Roles of practitioners

1. Providing information on how to operate systems to enable products to reach highest value

2. Broker in increasingly technological age

2. Structured education and training

3. Provision of information independent of a product, ie independence

4. Research and development

5. Information that is wholistic and sustainable by accounting for economic, social and natural environment

Drivers for change

1. Changing role of Government

2. Global issues /consumers

3. Reaching limits of some technologies

4. Cost-price pressure on farmers and resources (less land/water)

5. “Give me solutions, not options”

6. Increased questioning by clients

7. Greatly increased accountability

i. Legal

ii. Resource impacts

iii. Stewardship

8. Rural society change in values and full-time/part-time farmers

9. Increased age of experienced consultants/advisers and attraction to young, inexperienced professionals

Existing performance of consultants and advisers

1. Increasing numbers of graduates and qualifications

2. Limited supply of pre-trained people

3. Difficulties in offering on the job training in the private sector

4. Government agencies with switch to short-term contracts now not offering as much in-house training

5. Environment => absence of a structure

6. Constraints on employers, particularly on-costs to employ people

7. Matching academic and people skills

8. Only a few employers are offering career paths

9. The tension between technology and process skills (eg, people, change management, engage and negotiate)

10. Intellectual property is posing constraints on sharing and using knowledge

11. Concerns as to capacity to critically evaluate information

What matters require addressing

1. Providing knowledge to farmers and how to operate systems to enable products to reach highest value markets = tick for farmers (implications for consultants)

2. Increasing the monetary returns of clients = Dollars in the market

3. True industry driven training and education so as to respond promptly to changes in market.

4. Establish industry competencies and recognition.

5. Professional societies, agencies engaging industry in forward and innovative ways.


  • Absence of a strong commitment to improve accreditation
  • Accreditation isn’t appealing through the eyes of more experienced and usually older practitioners, eg at 67 CPAg not seen as priority, however willing to be seen to keep up as an example to younger
  • Existing competence of consultants to be used to convince insurance companies
  • University training no substitute for on-the-job experience
  • Accreditation needs to provide something of value to consultants
  • Some interest in wanting to pursue the generic and leadership competencies
  • Business-related professional updates offered have been very useful (e.g. South Australia Business Centre) but rather ad hoc hence attractiveness of a structured approach
  • Professional societies can be a driver to support and improve the professional qualifications whilst recognising they not necessarily represent best practice. Societies have the skill base to support accreditation and the proven ability work with industry

Previous PageTop Of Page