ACCC grants authorisation to the RCSA’s professional conduct regime

12 February 2014

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has issued a final determination re‑authorising the Recruitment and Consulting Services Association’s (RCSA) professional conduct regime for five years.

The RCSA is the peak industry association in Australia and New Zealand for members who provide recruitment and human resources services. RCSA membership constitutes around 25 per cent of the recruitment and consulting industry. The regime includes the Code for Professional Conduct, Disciplinary and Dispute Resolution Procedures and associated documents.

The Code sets out RCSA’s guidelines for professional and ethical best practice for its members in the provision of recruitment and human resources services. The authorisation permits the RCSA to implement sanctions against members who breach the Code. 

“RCSA’s professional conduct regime appears to have been effective to date. The level of non-compliance with the Code appears to have reduced and members who have failed to comply with the Code have been sanctioned,” ACCC Deputy Chair Dr Michael Schaper said. 

The ACCC has authorised previous versions of the Professional Conduct Regime since 2003.The latest version includes a new provision which requires corporate members (typically franchisors)  to ensure that their related entities (typically franchisees) become RCSA members .

The ACCC also grants interim authorisation for the proposed arrangements to enable the RCSA to continue to administer its professional conduct regime beyond the expiry of RCSA’s current authorisation.

Interim authorisation commences immediately and will remain in place until the date that the ACCC's final determination comes into effect or is revoked.

“The Professional Conduct Regime should continue to promote equitable dealings and enhanced business efficiency in the recruitment services industry,” Dr Schaper said.

Authorisation provides statutory protection from court action for conduct that might otherwise raise concerns under the competition provisions of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010. Broadly, the ACCC may grant an authorisation when it is satisfied that the public benefit from the conduct outweighs any public detriment.

More information about the application for authorisation, including a copy of the ACCC's determination and public submissions, will be available at

Release number: 
NR 019/14
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