Information requests for childcare providers 8 May 2023

  • The ACCC is conducting an inquiry into the market for the supply of childcare services
  • We are engaging with childcare providers to understand the cost of providing childcare
  • For providers with between 1 and 4 services we will hold in-person meetings 
  • For providers with between 5–39 services we will hold virtual meetings

Information we want from providers

The inquiry will be asking providers for information about:

  • Labour costs
  • Land and related costs
  • Finance and administrative costs
  • Regulatory compliance costs
  • The costs of consumables
  • The prices charged since 2018

It is particularly important that we hear from smaller childcare providers to ensure that our findings reflect the experiences of the entire sector.

What we won’t ask providers about

  • Information about childcare services not eligible for the childcare subsidy. For example, pre-school and kindergarten services.
  • Information that has already been provided and that we are able to get from relevant
    Commonwealth data sets
  • Individually identifiable information about children

When we will engage with providers

We will engage with selected providers from February 2023.

For providers of between 1 and 4 services

For our first round of information gathering we issued voluntary information requests and arranged in-person meetings to help providers respond to the requests. Each visit took between 1 and 2 hours. These visits began in March 2023.

For providers of between 5 and 39 services

We will issue voluntary information requests and arrange virtual meetings to help providers respond to the requests.  We expect each meeting to take up to 2 hours and we will schedule these virtual meetings from early May 2023.

How we decide which providers to seek information from

The providers we select will be decided based on several factors. This will ensure that we are hearing a diverse range of views representative of the childcare sector.

Some of the factors we will be considering in choosing providers include:

  • type of provider
  • type of childcare service
  • number of childcare services
  • geographic location
  • age and characteristics of the child in care
  • level of competition
  • the quality rating of the childcare service provided.

What to do if you receive a request for information

We will be selecting childcare providers to participate in the inquiry.

For providers of 1 to 4 services

A member of our taskforce will send you an information request and schedule a time for an in-person meeting at your premises. We will help you complete the information request.

For providers with between 5 and 39 services

A member of our taskforce will contact you and schedule a time for a virtual meeting to speak with you. During this meeting, we will help you complete the information request.

How we treat information you provide to the inquiry

The security and protection of stakeholder data is a priority for the inquiry. The information you provide to us will be used by the ACCC for the purpose of informing our reports into the childcare sector. For example, data may be aggregated with similar data from other providers and analysed to identify key features and trends across the sector and within certain parts of the sector. Where we wish to publish the information in a form that may identify you, we will consult with you first.

How the ACCC inquiry is different to other childcare inquiries

There are several other government inquiries or processes relevant to the ACCC’s Childcare Inquiry that are currently underway or commencing soon.

We are trying to reduce the load on childcare providers and other stakeholders by working with relevant government agencies to make sure we ask for consistent information as much as possible.

Other information gathering activities

We will gather information to help our inquiry in a range of ways.

This includes:

  • information requests
  • compulsory information notices
  • a survey for parents and guardians
  • roundtable discussions.

The timeline for consultation is available on our website. The timeline will be updated as required.