RTO Set Up and RTO Business Coach
RTO set Up and RTO Business Coach

RTO business coach & RTO set up consultant

You know what you want out of your RTO business and yet it seems that every turn you reach a dead-end and you’re left questioning where to turn next.

One thing isn’t clear: how to get there. 

You’re probably overwhelmed by how much there is to do and frustrated that you seem to be the only one who can do it all.

That’s where I come in.

Your RTO vision looks something like this:

  • A thriving RTO business that satisfies your ambition, allows you to grow and be more than ‘the doer of all things’


  • To exceed your financial goals and have the lifestyle you really want


  • More balance, not less


Whether you’re looking to set-up an RTO, grow or scale your existing RTO business, I am here to support you, both commercially and personally, so that you can create a business with impact and one that you are proud of.


Your RTO will be aligned with your bigger life goals, your values and, importantly, it will see financial success. 


Maybe you’re confused about what to prioritise, and just wish you knew what would really move the needle for you?

Or perhaps you’re just tired of grinding so hard but not getting ahead, watching everyone else around you succeed.

I’ve been there.

Having built & managed multiple RTO businesses, I know the enormous amount of things there are to do in building, managing the compliance, undertaking the marketing and running the businesses.

Once you are through the RTO set-up audit hurdle then you need run the business. I know how overwhelming it can be – it’s like you’re supposed to be an expert in marketing, law, accounting, HR, RTO compliance, training… the list goes on and on…

But I’m here to tell you it doesn’t have to be like that.

In helping you to become an RTO and improve your business, I draw on over 20 years of experience in managing corporate divisions and businesses, in marketing, sales, and managing RTO’s and their compliance. All of that experience is backed-up with 15+ years’ experience of coaching and mentoring, as well as my successful entrepreneurial experience. So in working with me, you will find I draw upon the lessons learnt from failures, successes and feedback to help YOU on your journey to enjoy more time and freedom.

You’re in safe hands

Our RTO Services

RTO Business Coach

Australia leading RTO Business Coach. If you would like some help within your business from someone who’s been there, coached other businesses, knows about RTO compliance and managed large teams, then maybe I can help.

Become an RTO

RTO Mentor helps people, just like you, to achieve the dream of their very own compliant training organisation, one that issues Australian nationally accredited training. It takes great attention to detail, have someone who knows the systems to guide you.

Compliance Audit

Our compliance audit is not just a tick (or cross) and send you a report on the areas of what need fixing. We believe in getting the systems right, so you can deliver that fantastic training. We work with your business, your systems and review the business.

Business Coach

Contact Merinda to discuss your RTO

I'd love to help you with your RTO, let's make a time to connect.


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Pat came to us when he needed help with undertsanding the complexities of the RTO business and how to set it up. We went through our step by step process, and mentoring. This is what Pat said when his application was approved... Thanks for your help, much appreciated. Yea Merinda Just cracking a bottle of Champers.
Lee-AnneWA RTO (TAC)
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“I have a secret, an RTO secret; it is RTO Mentor and specifically Merinda Smith. She is the best out there and we could not do without her. Thank you for everything you do assist us with our compliance and enabling us to get through another audit “
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I asked RTO Mentor to assist me with to set-up my RTO. The process was a positive experience, with regular contact and very informative, allowing me to understand what was required. Merinda has been there every step of the way to guide me through becoming an RTO. She was always on the other end of the phone or emails. Great experience.
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WE DID IT!!!! ITS OFFICIAL!!! Cannot thank you enough for all of your hard work and assistance !!!!! Now the hard work starts 😊 I might have a few questions to ask you on what I do from here!! I am currently overseas so will speak to you next week!! IM SO EXCITED!!!!
Louise Small Business owner
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Merinda is a wonderful business coach and mentor and extremely professional at what she does. She assisted me to step back and work on the business, rather than in the business. It was this that had a huge part in us winning the Gold Award at the WA Awards and the Bronze Award at the Australian Awards.

3 Tips to set up your RTO

Excerpts from Merinda's Blog

3 tips to help you increase your RTO

Your RTO Success depends on you constantly looking at your business. Working on your business, managing the numbers and reviewing the metrics.    Your RTO Success relies on you looking at the following:  Maintain your Focus for the Long Term.  Focusing on the students is a positive and much can be achieved by listening to what they want. This information will provide you with a long term strategy – what courses they want, how they want them, and when. Yes we sure do need to buckle up and get ready for the ride, seize the moment and transform it into an opportunity — an opportunity to sharpen the focus of your RTOs vision and long-term goals. You might be pleasantly surprised what the students have to say. Maintaining Your Focus on Service Quality. Service quality continues with the student focus. Establish systems that provide service, and continue to provide what the client wants. Maybe it is time to change them up and amend those training and assessment strategies and internal processes to deliver the greatest value to your customers and clients. My best advice is to listen to your clients and they will tell you how you can improve. Consider ways to support them and their learning.  Keeping up with Innovation. One of the key aspects of the current environment is the innovation that is out there to support the students and the trainers. It seems there is an app or online tool for everything, and so many that can be used to provide a better student experience. Whether they are used to create and share lessons on your tablet, flipping classrooms, creating your own animated videos or allowing students to imagine, write, illustrate and share their own stories. Then of course there are the many social media platforms where students/ trainers can bring together content and share in various ways. Perhaps now is the time to start researching those apps, and maybe implementing one or two into your training delivery model. The RTOs who can harness the power of digital data, and keep compliance will be the big winners. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes (remember your continuous improvement). Be bold, think big and learn along the way.   Let’s Talk about your business How is the energy you are putting into your business? Is it running a bit low?   Are you feel like the right clients wont come to you? Or your revenue isn’t growing, or worse, it’s staying the same, month after month? You can’t seem to build the right team, or structure… and basically so much about it it is frustrating?   Interested to find out how we can help you? MORE by clicking the button… Click here

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Does your RTO have an outstanding Human Resource management process?

The key to retaining good staff is to make sure that you encourage their professional development and training. Looking after your staff has so many more benefits than ticking off the RTO Standards.  When your employees can see ways to improve themselves, or improve their position, or salary whilst in employment with you, they are likely to have high job satisfaction. This benefits you and your RTO through increased productivity and concern about quality. Your whole Human Resource management process is important within your RTO, as in any business, it brings unimaginable benefits. People are essential to the success of any business, and especially so in an RTO, where you need trainers and assessors. Getting the right people are key to your success, and the reason students rave about you. So often this part of the RTO gets neglected. The performance of employees can be a liability or asset to a company. They can really big the difference between getting new students, and filling courses, or not. I recall an RTO I was called in to help when they had a complaint emailed to them about one of their trainers. Now this RTO actually had known this trainer was saying inappropriate things for about 12 months before an actual complaint was made. What made this complaint so bad was it was from a client who never wanted to deal with them again. The client made up 80% of their business. We worked together on solutions, and rectifications, and thankfully we were able to bring back the business, even if they said they would never have this particular person back on their site. Bad huh?   Yes.   What I found even worse, was that they actually knew about the behaviour 12 months before, and had not done anything about it. That mistake could have cost them 80% of their business. Having an RTO is just not about meeting compliance, it is about running a business that truly looks out for all the stakeholders. Reviewing your Human Resource processes is just as important as reviewing your validation schedule, your customer service and your enrolment data. Although Staff Training is just a small part of the Human Resource process, it is really interesting to take a close look at it. This includes looking at the following key areas: Recruitment and selection Performance management Learning & professional development Succession planning Compensation and benefits Human Resources Information Systems The above are all basic areas, yet sadly I see they are being neglected within RTOs, as they actually are not specified within the RTO Standards. By recruiting well, and then on-boarding the team member allows them to understand your business, and most importantly allows them to perform at their best. This is a win for you. Once the employees are on board, and they’ve been given all the necessary help to know the job, the next step is having an effective performance management process. This is not just a once a year catch up. It is about understanding the employees, talking to them often, and getting feedback from them, and from others who work with them. Employees who are empowered to their full potential, improve the efficiency, sustainability, and profit margin of any business. By making this a continuous process you are able to see employees who consistently underperform. Sometimes they may not be a good fit for their role, or the RTO culture. When you’ve tried strategies to work with them with no success, then maybe these employees need to be let go. Training can improve business performance, profit and staff morale.  Advantages to your business include: You choose what new skills your workforce acquires. You can target skills to meet the needs of your business for now and in the future You may be able to get government funding to help meet training costs Training your staff can result in better customer service, better work safety practices and productivity improvements You have longevity of staff showing you value them enough to invest in them.   Training has many benefits for your staff  They acquire new skills, increasing their contribution to the business and building their self-esteem The training they do can take them into other positions within the organisation – positions with better prospects and/or better pay They’re motivated and come with fresh ideas When they’re being trained on your time, they see that you value them enough to invest in them.  You become a valued employer. A good company is seen as one that retrains rather than churns. Succession planning helps you and your students so that you are ready with contingencies in case of key employees leaving the business. If, for example, a crucial trainer quits his/her job, having someone who can step up will guarantee continuity and can save the RTO significant money.   Retaining and motivating staff is key for your RTO. One of the areas that needs to be addressed is ensuring equity and fairness of pay within the RTO and considering external factors. Obviously this must be balanced with the RTO budget and profit margins. Pay increases need to be monitored on occasions conduct a pay audit. Keeping track of your employees in a digital format supports the business. For me it’s a no brainer as I’ve been working with HR system for over 30 years (yes, OK that is for some time!). I can’t work without them. So I’m just saying they add value, and save you time. Think of these basics as building blocks that all contribute to each other. Collectively, these HR fundamentals enable your RTO workforce to perform at its very best. Enabling you to increase your targets and bottom line results.

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