Technical Advisory Group Terms of Reference

1. Background and Context 

The Cleaning Accountability Framework (CAF) was established in recognition of the systemic exploitation of cleaners in the cleaning supply chain, and that an improvement to labour standards requires a whole of supply chain approach that starts with responsible contracting of cleaning services. 

CAF’s mission is to end exploitation in property services and improve work standards. Our vision is to make responsible procurement and ongoing management of supply chains the norm, to give workers a voice and agency in improving workplace conditions, and to demonstrate the resulting value of an improved work environment.

Through the CAF Star Rating scheme, businesses are rewarded for following good practices and ensuring decent work for cleaners. CAF currently has developed a 3 Star Rating scheme for commercial office buildings and retail malls.

2. Purpose of the Technical Advisory Group

The purpose of the Technical Advisory Group (TAG) is to ensure the CAF Certification Framework, tools and associated functions are relevant, effective, innovative and contribute to CAF’s overall mission and vision.

3. Role of the Technical Advisory Group

The role of the TAG is to provide expert advice and input into the development of the CAF Certification Framework. This will occur primarily through the work of technical working groups. 

4. Composition

The TAG will have a maximum of 15 members and will be proportionately representative in terms of stakeholder categories (e.g. procurement, contractors, unions, government, tenants, academia etc).

The TAG may decide from time to time to appoint temporary observers to address specific matters. Any decision must either be by consensus or obtain a 3/4ths majority.

TAG members must also be financial members of CAF or subject to another formal partnership arrangement with CAF.

5. Duties of members

TAG members will be individuals nominated by their organisation who have the time and expertise to contribute meaningfully to CAF’s ongoing development. This will require a minimum time commitment of 4-5 hours per month per working group. 

Members will be expected to review and refine tools, processes and projects put forward by the CAF Secretariat. Members may also be invited to participate in testing new and existing CAF tools and frameworks and are expected to provide open and transparent feedback to CAF on their experience.

Members will gain access to commercially confidential information and intellectual property through the TAG, and therefore will be required to sign a confidentiality agreement. Any unauthorised use, distribution or reproduction of CAF material will be grounds for dismissal from the TAG and may result in termination of general membership of CAF.

6. Term

The TAG will commence on the 1st July of a given year and sit for a minimum of two and maximum of three years.

7. Governance

Members of the TAG will be appointed by the CAF Steering Committee/Board according to CAF’s needs of the day. For example, if CAF is diversifying into a new sector, organisations with subject matter expertise specific to that sector will be invited to nominate for a position on the TAG. Prior to the start of a new TAG term, CAF will issue a call for nomination outlining the remit of the next TAG and skills/experience required.

Members may be re-elected indefinitely provided they continue to meet the requirements as outlined in these terms of reference.

Members of the TAG may also be removed by the CAF Steering Committee/Board at its sole discretion. Likely reasons for removal may be the following:

  • The TAG member ceases to be a member of CAF
  • The TAG member breaches their duties, is non-responsive, or is not complying with the CAF Core Principles
  • CAF completes a key project which leads to the winding up of a working group

8. Changes to the Technical Advisory Group 

TAG members may resign at any time by providing notice in writing to the CAF Secretariat. 

Where a TAG member either resigns or is removed, the position may either remain vacant or the CAF Secretariat will be responsible for finding a replacement which will require the approval of other members of the TAG. If the existing TAG members are unable to reach a consensus on the replacement member, the matter will be referred to the CAF Steering Committee/Board.

Where a working group is being wound up during the term of the TAG due to completion or abandonment of a project for example, the CAF Secretariat will work with the members of that working group to either join one of the other working groups, or identify other opportunities. 

9. Working groups

The work of the TAG will primarily take place through working groups. Each working group will have a specific focus/theme, usually related to a new field of development for CAF. There will generally be a maximum of three working groups at any one time, unless directed otherwise by the CAF Steering Committee/Board. Information on current working groups can be obtained by contacting the CAF Secretariat. 

Each working group must have a minimum of three and a maximum of eight members.

The focus of each working group will be decided by the CAF Steering Committee/Board in advance of a new term of the TAG, or at any other time as required. Similarly, the decision to wind down a working group before the end of an TAG term will be at the discretion of the CAF Steering Committee/Board.

Members must nominate one working group to be involved in at a minimum and may join as many other working groups as they like as long as they can demonstrate relevant subject matter expertise and are able to commit the time. 

The CAF Secretariat will prepare and distribute meeting agendas and supporting reading materials and will circulate to members at least three working days before meetings take place. Meeting minutes will be circulated within five working days after the meeting has taken place.

From time to time, the working groups may be asked to report to the CAF Steering Committee/Board. Where this happens, members of that working group will collectively decide who will be their representative.

10. Rules of Engagement   

Members of the TAG will participate in an open and constructive manner. This requires members to: 

  • Respect and constructively consider the opinions and viewpoints presented by other TAG members;  
  • Participate in an open and transparent manner and make decisions in CAF’s best interests;
  • Actively participate in working groups and, within reason, contribute additional time and/or input between meetings; and
  • Respond to requests from the Secretariat in an appropriate and timely manner.

Confidentiality applies to all CAF meetings and communications, unless otherwise stated. Any information used by CAF will not be attributed to a particular individual or organisation without prior consent.

11. Validity of this Terms of Reference 

This Terms of Reference is effective from the 1st July 2020. Any amendments or updates made by the CAF Steering Committee/Board will be notified to members in writing at least 30 days before changes take effect.