5 years ago

Administration of the Digital Television Switchover Household ...

Administration of the Digital Television Switchover Household ...

met, and that management

met, and that management information 73 received from DHS accurately reflects the types of services delivered. 4.29 As part of the quality assurance reviews undertaken by the contract management section on the data provided by service contractors, in February 2011, DBCDE found that some services had been delivered by an unapproved installer during the Regional Victoria rollout. As a result, the relevant service contractor’s invoices were rejected for payment. The service contractor could not provide the department with evidence of approval and, as a result, the service contractor sought permission to resubmit invoices, having removed claims for work completed by unapproved subcontractors. 4.30 In March 2011, the department acknowledged that a formal, standard process for approving subcontractors had not been previously implemented and acknowledged that retrospective approval of installers had occurred. In consultation with the service contractors, DBCDE developed an installer approval process and introduced an installer approval request form: Household Assistance Scheme Installer/Subcontractor Approval Application Form. The form clearly states that subcontractors ‘can only commence installations/appointments from the date approved by the Household Assistance Scheme’. DBCDE advised service contractors that it would no longer approve installers retrospectively. Further, any work identified as being undertaken by an unapproved installer would be treated as a breach of the deed, and would result in financial penalties being imposed. 4.31 During the Regional Queensland rollout, DBCDE identified further cases of unapproved installers delivering HAS services. The service contractor concerned could not provide evidence of having requested approval for the identified installer. The invoices were rejected by the department and the department sought advice from the department’s Legal Services Group regarding possible breaches of the deed of service agreement. The advice presented the department with several options. Having considered the advice received, the department’s policy on payments, and submissions made by the service contractor, the department decided to withhold payments for all installations undertaken by unapproved installers. The service contractor was 73 Chapter 2: Program Design and Implementation describes the systems and processes in place to transfer data and management information from DHS to DBCDE under the terms of the MoU between the agencies. DHS retains day-to-day responsibility for collecting data under the Scheme. DBCDE remains responsible for ensuring subcontracted installers are approved to deliver services under the Scheme. ANAO Audit Report No.55 2011–12 Administration of the Digital Television Switchover Household Assistance Scheme 94

Scheme Delivery Arrangements advised to resubmit all invoices and backing data with amounts for the unapproved installers removed. As at 1 March 2012, a total of $197 815 has been withheld from service contractors for works completed by up to 11 unapproved subcontracted installers, involving up to 922 installations. Police checks and other safeguards 4.32 Service contractors are required to ensure that installers have a current police check in place before delivering HAS services into homes. For the Mildura/Sunraysia pilot through to Regional Victoria, if required by the Commonwealth, the service contractor, at their own expense, had to undertake a police check of all subcontractors that would enter customers’ homes. The formal requirement for installers to have a police check was introduced in the draft deed of service agreement accompanying the RFT for the Regional Queensland rollout. The HAS contract management section has since reviewed and modified business rules around police checks and service contractors are now required to provide all police check documentation to DBCDE. The strengthened arrangements for police checks provide the department with additional assurance regarding the subcontracted installers delivering HAS services. 4.33 The deeds between DBCDE and the service contractors also establish a number of additional safeguards for customers. The service contractor must: � comply with the requirements of DBCDE’s security policies; � ensure that all digital television installers wear clear identification badges and use the nominated password provided by a customer; and � ensure that all installers comply with the obligations of the deed between the service contractor and the department. Training of installers 4.34 Subcontractors undertaking HAS installations are required to be provided with training by service contractors. Although training is a requirement of the deeds, DBCDE does not prescribe how the training is to be delivered, with the onus being on the service contractor to ensure that the installers are adequately prepared and trained to deliver HAS services. 4.35 In November 2011, the ANAO accompanied a representative of DBCDE to training sessions for installers of both service contractors. Installers attending this training are given a detailed manual outlining information about HAS and training covering: ANAO Audit Report No.55 2011–12 Administration of the Digital Television Switchover Household Assistance Scheme 95

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