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This glossary is a guide to assist in the understanding of the terms used in the Funded Contract Management Framework. It applies to child and family, community building, domestic and family violence, and homelessness programs only.

This glossary is not to be used in the legal interpretation of terms in FACS contracts that are the same or similar to the terms as they appear in this glossary.

A C D F G H I J L M P R S U

A

Accountability

See annual accountability.

Agreement for Funding of Services

See Human Services Agreement.

Administration fees

See management and administration fees.

Allegation of misconduct

A claim made by one party about something wrong, improper or illegal that has or has not been done by another party.

Misconduct refers to any conduct, of any person, that involves serious or persistent harassment, bullying, fraud, corruption or conflict of interest.

Examples include:

  • fraud, forgery, misappropriation, misuse, misdirection, misapplication, maladministration or waste of funds
  • conflicts of interest, nepotism, favouritism
  • theft, embezzlement, tax evasion
  • corruption, dishonesty involving influence
  • assault, blackmail, taking or offering bribes
  • abuse of public trust
  • other criminally prosecutable offences directly related to employment
  • failure to report or concealment of an indictable offence
  • unreasonable danger to health or safety of clients
  • failure to act in accordance with the applicable professional and ethical standards
  • blatant disregard for policies
  • other serious acts such as refusing to carry out lawful and/or reasonable actions required under a contract.

See contracting issue.

Annual accountability

In the context of funded contract management, annual accountability is a mandatory process that ensures funded service providers are accountable for the funding they receive and the services they are contracted to deliver on behalf of the NSW Government.

The annual accountability process requires service providers to submit information to FACS to verify that they:

  • used funds as agreed in the contract with FACS, and can account for that usage
  • complied with key elements of the contract
  • achieved the performance requirements set out in the contract.

The process is also used by FACS to ensure service providers have relevant practices in place to minimise the risk of instability to, or interruption of the services agreed in the contract.

There are separate requirements for reporting annual accountability at the corporate and contract levels.

See corporate-level accountability and contract-level-accountability.

For FACS contract managers, the annual accountability process is in two parts:

  • Part 1. Check and accept submissions
  • Part 2. Conduct performance and risk assessments.

During Part 1, contract managers formally check and accept the accountability information provided by service providers.

Note that ‘accepting’ annual accountability submissions does not mean FACS agrees with them. It means that FACS acknowledges the submission has been received, and that Part 1 has been completed.

This information is then used as part of the assessment conducted during Part 2 of the process, which is completed immediately following Part 1.

Service providers may be contacted to provide information about their annual accountability submissions during one or both parts of the FACS review and assessment process.

Annual accountability focus areas

The annual accountability focus areas address various aspects of governance, financial management and/or service delivery, to ensure funded service providers have sound governance, financial and service system controls in place, for stable and uninterrupted delivery of services.

The focus areas form part of the requirements for reporting annual accountability – corporate level.

The focus areas change from year to year, based on:

Annual performance and risk assessment

Part 2 of the annual accountability process for FACS contract managers, the annual performance and risk assessments are used to:

  • review the performance of service providers to identify issues which may affect their ability to deliver services
  • assess the level of risk, based on the severity of any issues identified
  • take the initial actions necessary to assist service providers to address any issues, completed at the corporate and contract levels.

C

Commissioning

An approach that puts clients and outcomes at the centre of service delivery. It leverages the strengths of the partnerships between government, non-government and private organisations to deliver the best outcomes for clients.

At FACS we apply this through five commissioning principles:

  • client-centric – having meaningful and culturally appropriate engagement with clients to ensure their feedback, needs and aspirations shape policy, service design and implementation
  • outcomes based – focusing on the outcomes to be achieved, and being flexible about who delivers the services and how they deliver them
  • value for money – delivering quality services that meet the needs and aspirations of our clients, in the most efficient and sustainable way
  • integrated – coordinating and integrating activities across FACS, together with service partners, to support delivery that improves outcomes for clients
  • evidence informed – learning from programs, innovative pilots, literature and evaluation to inform future design and practice.

Complainant

The person making a complaint.

Complaint

See contracting complaint.

Complaint management

The process for managing complaints.

Complaints are managed in accordance with the NSW Ombudsman’s Complaint Management Framework (June 2015) and complaint handling model policy, which conform to the Australian and New Zealand Standard Guidelines for complaint management in organizations (AS/NZS 10002:2014).

FACS is committed to implementing the NSW Ombudsman commitments to effective complaints handling through its policies, procedures and practices. The commitments acknowledge that everybody has the right to complain, and are centred on respectful treatment, information and accessibility, good communication, taking ownership, timeliness and transparency.

See contracting complaint.

Contract

The legally binding agreement between FACS and a service provider to deliver funded services.

  • Contracts executed before August 2017 consisted of a Funding Deed and Program Level Agreement (including its schedules and annexures).
  • From August 2017, most new contracts will consist of a Human Services Agreement (HSA) comprising an Agreement for Funding of Services – Standard Terms, and Agreement for Funding of Services – Schedule.

In both cases, the two documents form the contract and must be read in conjunction with each other.

Contract-level accountability

Contract-level accountability requires service providers to report income and expenditure against FACS funding, declare unspent funds, and certify they met the financial responsibilities and contractual obligations for the reported financial year.

See annual accountability.

Contract management

See funded contract management

Contract manager

The person who manages the contractual relationship with service providers, on behalf of FACS.

This is a role, not a position title.

Reference to ‘contract managers’ includes lead contract managers.

Contracting complaint

An expression of dissatisfaction made to FACS, about FACS or a service provider, in relation to its staff, services or handling of complaints, where a response or resolution is explicitly or implicitly expected or is legally required.*

Contracting complaints relate to matters concerning funded contract management. This includes:

  • the way the contract is being managed, and decisions made
  • the quality, level and/or timeliness of communication and contracting support provided
  • behaviour of FACS contracting staff
  • failure to meet promises or commitments related to managing the contract
  • the service delivery practices of another FACS-funded service provider, such as denying a client access to its services or of providing insufficient service.

A FACS contracting complaint is not a matter that relates to services funded by another agency or that has another specific process for its management. The following are not treated as contracting complaints:

  • disputes
  • allegations of misconduct
  • issues arising during the negotiation of a contract with a service provider
  • privacy complaints
  • requests for information
  • concerns, feedback and enquiries
  • child protection-related complaints raising risk of harm concerns.

* This definition is adapted from the definition of a complaint in AS/NZS 100002:2014, and is based on and the definition used in the FACS Complaints and Feedback Management Policy.

Contracting issue

A matter which either:

  • has had or has the potential to have an adverse impact on the delivery of funded services, and may be related to governance, financial management or service delivery practices
  • relates to the conduct, competence or decisions of FACS, a service provider or their staff
  • relates to non-compliance with the terms and conditions of the contract.

Contracting issues relate to matters concerning funded contract management, and include allegations of misconductcontracting complaints and disputes.

The following matters are not contracting issues:

  • activities and tasks required to be done as part of managing the contract
  • concerns, feedback and enquiries
  • the request for an available service to be provided
  • an enquiry seeking information or advice
  • a request for review in relation to a FACS policy, without invoking the dispute clause of the contract.

Corporate-level accountability

Corporate-level accountability requires service providers to report financial health at the whole-of-organisation level, and declare compliance with their ongoing responsibilities and contractual obligations.

See annual accountability.


D

Dispute

A matter raised by invoking the dispute resolution clause in the contract.

See contracting issue.


F

FACS-funded service provider

An organisation contracted by FACS to deliver funded services on behalf of the NSW Government.

Also referred to as ‘service provider’ and 'funded service provider'.

FACS-funded service providers include:

  • non-government organisations, including peak organisations
  • other government agencies.

Financial management

The efficient and effective management of funds, which includes careful planning, directing, control and reporting of the financial resources of an organisation.

Funded contract management

'Funded contract management' refers to the systems and processes that support the way FACS manages its contracts with funded service providers.

The objective is to enable both parties to work together to deliver quality services and achieve the outcomes agreed in contracts.

The systems and processes ensure contracts are managed positively and effectively, using a strengths-based approach to work with service providers so that:

  • FACS contracts are achieving better outcomes for clients
  • service providers have the ongoing capacity and capability to deliver the outcomes agreed in contracts
  • FACS and service providers are managing issues and risks to ensure the stable and uninterrupted delivery of services
  • there is clarity and accountability for all parties as to how funds are being used to meet client needs.

Note that these processes differ with those used to manage goods and services contracts.

Funded Contract Management Framework

The mechanism for documenting and describing how FACS delivers funded contract management.

The framework specifies the requirements for the funded contract management processes. This ensures service providers and FACS staff have a common understanding of each other’s roles and responsibilities, as well as the activities to be carried out.

Funding Deed

​Sets out:
  • the terms and conditions of the contract
  • details about who can access the service
  • workforce, governance, data collection, financial management and other requirements.

The Funding Deed must be read in conjunction with the relevant Program Level Agreement.

Funded service

Activities for which FACS pays another organisation to deliver on behalf of the NSW Government.

Funding/funds

The fee FACS pays to deliver the funded services agreed in the contract with a service provider.


G

Governance

The system of rules, practices and processes by which an organisation is directed and controlled.

Governing body

The board, management committee or similar body responsible for governing an organisation.


H

Human Services Agreement (HSA)

From 1 August 2017, following Procurement Board Direction PBD-2017-01 Procuring human services from NGOs, FACS is required to use the NSW Human Services Agreement when procuring human services.

‘Human services’ means programs, facilities or services provided to meet the health, welfare and social needs of individuals, families and communities.

The HSA comprises two parts, which must be read in conjunction with each other:

  1. Agreement for Funding of Services – Standard Terms
  2. Agreement for Funding of Services – Schedule

FACS is gradually moving to the HSA. Existing contracts are not affected. FACS will implement HSAs as existing contracts expire.

See contract.


I

Improvement plan

See Performance Improvement Plan and Service Development Plan.

Issue

See contracting issue.


J

Joint working arrangement

A mechanism for collaboration and service delivery between organisations in the sector, whether the organisations are FACS-funded service providers or not.

The purpose of the arrangement may be anything from an informal alliance for sharing information, through to a consortium established to tender for a project or services.

There are different approaches to working together, with different levels of collaboration. The nature of the arrangement depends on the needs of each of the organisations involved and, if they are FACS-funded service providers, the outcomes to be achieved for FACS clients.


L

Lead contract manager

The contract manager, nominated by the lead unit, who has corporate responsibility for a service provider.

Lead unit

The district or Central Office directorate responsible for managing the corporate relationship with the service provider.

Line manager

The person who oversees contract managers, including lead contract managers.

This is a role, not a position title.


M

Management and administration fees

For FACS purposes, when we refer to ‘management and administration fees’ we mean all indirect costs incurred by a service provider in support of delivering the services agreed in the contract with FACS.

Indirect costs are comprised of all management, administrative, fixed and variable overhead costs.

Management and administration fees are reported as expenses, separately for each contract held with FACS, as part of contract-level accountability.


P

Partnership

A cooperative approach between agencies, authorities, services and others throughout the commissioning cycle to ensure the collaborative design and delivery of tailored service responses that improve outcomes for clients

Performance

How well a service provider is delivering the outcomes agreed in their contract with FACS.

In a broader sense, ‘performance’ also refers to a service provider’s ongoing capacity and capability to deliver stable, uninterrupted services, at the level of quality specified in the relevant Program Guidelines.

Performance Improvement Plan (PIP)

A PIP is formal agreement between FACS and a service provider, jointly developed to identify the actions the service provider will be required to undertake to resolve issues within an agreed timeframe.

At the contract manager’s discretion, and in consultation with the service provider, a PIP is developed and implemented to address either:

  • an annual performance and risk assessment that rates ‘high’ overall (instead of developing a Service Development Plan)
  • failure to participate or resolve issues identified in a Service Development Plan.

A PIP is mandatory to address either:

  • a significant issue related to governance, financial management and/or service delivery
  • an annual performance and risk assessment that rates ‘very high’ overall.

The need to develop and implement a PIP indicates to FACS that a service provider has significant issues which pose a high to very high risk to funded service delivery.

See Service Development Plan.

Performance monitoring

The ongoing interaction between FACS contract managers and service providers to ensure that funded services are being delivered as agreed and that risk to service delivery is being managed.

Program area

The FACS unit responsible for managing a program and the budget for that program.

Program Guidelines

Describe how funding programs are to be implemented in NSW. The guidelines ensure that the purpose, parameters and deliverables of the program are clearly articulated, enabling both FACS and service providers to be clear about what is being funded and why.

Program Level Agreement (PLA)

Outlines the services to be provided by a service provider for a program. A service provider may provide services under multiple PLAs.

The PLA does not provide the full detail of performance measures that service providers are expected to achieve. The document states that services must be delivered in accordance with the:

Schedules to the PLA differ between programs, and may include:

See contract.

Program manager

The person who heads the area responsible for a program.

This is a role, not a position title.


R

Risk

As defined by ISO 31000, the international standard for risk management, risk is ‘the effect of uncertainty on objectives’. In other words, risk is something that has the potential for positive or negative consequences on objectives.

In the context of funded contract management, a risk is a potential situation, circumstance or event which would adversely affect the ability to achieve better outcomes for clients.

A risk may occur at any future time, but it is not a certainty. It would arise as a consequence of a situation or weakness which can be identified now.


S

Service Development Plan (SDP)

An SDP is formal agreement between FACS and a service provider, jointly developed to identify the actions the service provider must take to resolve issues or make service improvements within an agreed timeframe.

At the contract manager’s discretion, and in consultation with the service provider, an SDP is developed and implemented to address any of the following:

  • general service delivery improvements
  • minor or moderate issues related to governance, financial management and/or service delivery
  • an annual performance and risk assessment that rates ‘low’ or ‘medium’ overall.

An SDP is mandatory to address an annual performance and risk assessment that rates ‘high’ overall.

See Performance Improvement Plan.

Service delivery

The quantitative and qualitative measures service providers are required to fulfil to meet their contractual requirements.

Service Delivery Schedule

If included as a schedule to a Program Level Agreement:

  • provides more detail about the services, activities, client groups and geographic location of services delivered
  • documents any implementation or transition plans, milestones, and how growth targets are expected to occur.

Note that with the introduction of the HSA, service delivery schedules will form part of the schedule to that contract.

Service partner

Any individual, group or organisation external to FACS that contributes to designing services.

Our service partners include:

  • non-government organisations, including peak organisations
  • other government agencies
  • community groups
  • individual specialists and experts in their field
  • clients.

Service provider

See FACS-funded service provider.

Subcontracting

For FACS purposes, subcontracting is when a service provider uses FACS funds to pay a third party — whether an organisation or an individual — to fulfil part of, or all of the services FACS has funded the service provider to deliver.

There are three arrangements which FACS considers to be subcontracting:

  1. A consortium, where a FACS-funded service provider has a contract with one or more third parties to deliver all or part of the funded services.
  2. A fee-for-service arrangement, where regularly or from time to time a FACS-funded service provider uses purchase orders to buy services from one or more third parties to deliver all or part of the funded services.
  3. A labour-hire arrangement where a FACS-funded service provider hires contractors, either directly or through a third party — full time, part time or casually — to deliver any aspect of the funded services.

In a subcontracting arrangement, the third party is referred to as a ‘subcontractor’.

Some typical examples of circumstances which are not subcontracting are when a service provider:

  • uses FACS funds to cover ancillary costs, such as cleaning and security, when they are required to support the running of the FACS-funded services
  • hires temporary staff or contractors for office administration or other duties which are not directly related to the FACS-funded services
  • pays for a child or young person in its care to visit the doctor, dentist or similar fee-for-service providers, for one-off or a small number of repeat visits. Note that it is subcontracting if paying a third party to deliver health services which are within the scope of the FACS-funded services for a child or young person’s therapeutic care.

In all other cases, when a service provider pays a third party to fulfil any part of its service delivery obligations under the contract with FACS, it is subcontracting.

Staff

All employees, contractors and agency personnel working for an organisation.


U

Unspent funds

Unspent funds include funds that:

  • have not been spent, including as a result of a service provider having a surplus or underspend of the funds in relation to the contracted services
  • have not been contractually committed to be paid to a third party in relation to the contracted services in a way that can be identified in a written contractual arrangement with that third party.

A C D F G H I J L M P R S U

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Last updated: 16 Apr 2019
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