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FAQs - Frequently asked questions

What is FOLS?

FOLS supports the professionalism and safety of industry through a national electronic system of recording and verifying the currency of Operator skills.

Who needs a FOLS and why?

FOLS is one of the most efficient and simple ways of demonstrating that someone has been assessed and is competent to carry out a particular task.  If an incident or accident occurs at your workplace, evidence that you have been trained and assessed to the appropriate standards and that your skills are current will be sought. FOLS provides a database to store these records and a FOLS card which summarises your training.

What are the benefits of employing workers with a FOLS?

Read the benefits here

Who oversees FOLS to ensure it reflects industry needs?

FOLS is a program operated by ForestWorks on behalf of the industry as a not for profit sustainable program.

The industry steering committee are able to respond to industry needs, where employers, RTOs, trainers and assessors will have an opportunity to provide feedback, advice and guidance to ForestWorks in relation to skill certification and the FOLS Program.

How do I get a FOLS?

You can apply online or print out the application form and forward with evidence of attainment provided by an industry recognised RTO or a ForestWorks Accredited Assessor.

How do I renew my FOLS or update my personal details?

You can get a login at FOLS website to renew on line or email the FOLS Team on fols@forestworks.com.au or call 1800 177 001 for a renewal form.

How do I add an endorsement/skilled activity to my FOLS?

You need to provide evidence of having been assessed as competent against a nationally recognised unit of competency. Evidence would be in the form of a Statement of Attainment or qualification issued by a Registered Training Organisation (RTO).

Will my NOHSC unit be recognised for FOLS?

NOHSC standards are workplace standards and are not equivalent to nationally recognised units of competency. Furthermore, they do not focus on skills required for forestry applications.

Please contact your nearest Registered Training Organisation (RTO) for further information about certification, current industry experience and further assessment which may be required to receive a Statement of Attainment for a nationally recognised unit of competency. Please note a small fee may apply for this service.

For contracting businesses - what does FOLS offer and how much does it cost?

FOLS offers contracting businesses the ability to access and view the FOLS records of the operators they employ. They also have the ability to generate reports. The cost is detailed in the table below and is capped at $1,000 per annum for AFCA members until 30 June 2019.

For Forest Managers - what  does FOLS offer and how much does it cost?

FOLS offers forest managers the ability to access and view the FOLS records of the operators they employ. They also have the ability to generate reports.

Number of Direct Employees
+ Contracted Workforce

Contractor

$pa (excl GST)

AFCA* Member
discount
$pa (excl GST)

Forest Manager
Subscription
$pa (excl GST)

1
-
5
$ 125
$ 125
$ 125
4
-
25
$ 363
$ 363
 $ 363
15
-
40
$ 688
$ 688
 $ 688
25
-
55
$ 1,000
$ 1,000
 $ 1,000
40
-
80
$ 1,500
$ 1,000
 $ 1,500
55
-
145
$ 2,500
$ 1,000
 $ 2,500
100
-
300
 
 $ 1,000
 $ 5,000
200
-
600
 
 $ 1,000
 $ 10,000
600
 
 
 $ 1,000
 $ 10,000
* AFCA discount applies until June 30 2019

Is FOLS used by other industries?  

Yes - other industry groups use FOLS to ensure workers are trained to appropriate standards and access up to date records of skills certification of their workers.

Why do I need to be reassessed for tree falling?

Tree falling is considered a high-risk activity. It is therefore a requirement of industry that tree fallers are regularly reviewed to ensure they are operating to the highest safety requirements.

Victoria

You will need to be reassessed for tree falling every six years and at the three year renewal between reassessments you need to provide a letter of currency of your skills from your supervisor, employer or contract manager.  This decision was taken by the industry steering committee to increase the safety of all forest workers.

Tasmania

You will need to be reassessed for tree falling every three years. This decision was taken by the Tasmanian Forest Industry Safety Standards Committee following recommendations by the State Coroner for more frequent reassessment to increase the safety of all forest workers.

How can I pay for my FOLS?

You can pay by credit card / debit card (Visa, MasterCard) by phone or you can write these card details on your application or renewal form. You can pay by mailing a cheque or money order. You may also pay by cash at the Launceston office only - do not mail cash.  An invoice can be sent to you or your employer. Your FOLS card will be mailed when payment is received. Invoices may be paid by EFT, cheque or credit card. All payments need to be made to ForestWorks Ltd.

How much does a FOLS cost?

ForestWorks is a not for profit organisation and fees are set at a level that will cover the costs of administering the system on behalf of the industry.

FOLS type

Duration

Fee
(ex-GST)

Fee
(incl. GST)

New FOLS

3 years

$150

$165

Renewal

3 years

$150

$165

Trainee FOLS

6 months

$30

$33

Extend trainee FOLS

6 months

$30

$33

Add endorsement

Duration of current FOLS

$20

$22

Replacement (of lost) FOLS

Duration of current FOLS

$35

$38.50








Do you issue Commercial Firewood permits or domestic firewood collecting permits?

No - in Victoria contact VicForests for a commercial firewood permits and Forest Produce Licenses or DELWP (DEPI) for domestic firewood permits. In Tasmania contact Forestry Tasmania.


FOLS is an industry-led, not for profit, membership-based program that is managed by ForestWorks.
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