Updates

HSQF Framework Version 8.0 released with updated User Guide

An updated version of the Human Services Quality Framework (HSQF) Quality Framework Version 8.0 and HSQF User Guide – Certification Version 8.0 is now available on the HSQF website.

– The HSQF Quality Framework Version 8.0 includes information about new service types under HSQF as well as updates to existing service types as required. The Version Control and Log of Changes provides information on changes in Version 8.0.

– The HSQF User Guide – Certification Version 8.0 outlines quality guidelines and evidence requirements for organisations required to achieve HSQF certification. The Version Control and Log of Changes provides information on changes in Version 8.0.

– As part of the Domestic and family violence services Regulatory Framework the updated DFV requirements are embedded within the HSQF User Guide – Certification Version 8.0, as well as outlined separately in the DFV supplement

Some of the key changes include:

  • inclusion of the new Domestic and Family Violence requirements through specific criteria and suggested evidence
  • inclusion of new Alcohol and Other Drugs requirements
  • updates to terminology and references in line with machinery of government changes
  • updates to service specific requirements and funding thresholds
  • removal of service user sections in HSQF Quality Framework Version 8.0
  • addition of new section “Fire safety – minimum requirements to be demonstrated” in the HSQF User Guide – Certification Version 8.0 Appendix A.

The HSQF Quality Framework Version 8.0 and User Guide – Certification Version 8.0 take effect from 1 October 2021.

What you need to do:

  • Organisations in-scope of HSQF audits/certification should review the HSQF Quality Framework Version 8.0 and the HSQF User Guide – Certification Version 8.0 and implement new or amended requirements relevant to the services you are delivering in order to demonstrate your compliance with the Human Services Quality Standards in future audits.
  • The relevant Version Control Registers and Log of Changes will assist you in identifying the changes or updates in Versions 8.0 and your departmental contract officer/s can assist with determining whether any new services need to be brought into the scope of your next audit.

Lead time for new requirements*:

To allow organisations and certification bodies time to understand and implement changed requirements, a lead-in time of three months applies to new or amended mandatory requirements*, with auditors being asked to apply the following approach:

  • All audits conducted prior to 1 October 2021, the Quality Framework Version 7.0 and User Guide Version 7.0 remain current.
  • Audits undertaken October 2021 – December 2021 should be undertaken against the requirements of the Quality Framework Version 8.0 and User Guide Version 8.0, however any findings which do not align with amended/updated requirements in Versions 8.0 are treated as a continuous improvement items only*, with corrective actions reviewed at the next audit.
  • Audits from 1 January 2022 will consider all requirements from Quality Framework Version 8.0 and User Guide Version 8.0* in line with the standard audit and non-conformance process. Please ensure auditors are made aware of the delayed compliance and audit approaches for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Services and Women’s Shelters, outlined below.

For Domestic and Family Violence services only

The Domestic and family violence services regulatory framework (the regulatory framework) will come into effect on 1 January 2022. This regulatory framework will ensure ongoing compliance of Queensland Government funded domestic and family violence (DFV) services with the Practice principles, standards and guidance (practice standards) that came into effect on 1 January 2021.

As the new DFV requirements under the Regulatory Framework are practice-focused, auditors will require a level of DFV-specific knowledge in order to adequately assess the practice they are observing.

The regulatory framework will capture all department–funded DFV services to ensure compliance with the practice standards. This includes DFV support services, perpetrator intervention services, women’s shelters and integrated service responses. The Regulatory Framework is operationalised through the HSQF Quality Framework Version 8.0. Specialist DFV criteria and suggested evidence have now been embedded into the HSQF User Guide – Certification Version 8.0.

Certification bodies accredited to undertake audits of organisations in-scope of HSQF funded by participating Queensland Government departments will be advised of the publication of updated documents.

For questions about the new versions of the Framework or the User Guide, please contact your departmental contract officer or the HSQF team on [email protected] or 1800 034 022.


The Queensland Government’s HSQF team will be guest speakers at QCOSS’ Quality Collaboration Network meeting on Wednesday, 17 November to go through all the changes made to the Framework. If you would like to speak to the HSQF team directly about any changes that impact your service, register now.