Code of Conduct

NRTO Code of Conduct

November 2021

Code of Conduct


For members of the Dutch Council for Training and Education (NRTO)



Members of the Dutch Council for Training and Education (NRTO) contribute daily to the development of talent, for young people and adults. In addition, our members are sparring partners for businesses in the field of learning and development. The NRTO and its members consider it their responsibility to set standards for the behavior of their members. The purpose of the NRTO Code of Conduct is to contribute to a socially responsible business operation and the promotion of expertise and reliability of members. This code of conduct also applies to subcontractors and partners of NRTO members who provide services on their behalf. The code of conduct also functions as a business card for the industry.

Part 1 General provisions

Article 1 Definitions

This code refers to:

  • NRTO: Dutch Council for Training and Education
  • Industry: Natural and legal persons active in the field of learning and development
  • Members/member: Natural persons and legal persons and partnerships without legal personality, registered in the trade register of the Chamber of Commerce, who are engaged in the Netherlands in accordance with the statutory provisions in the business of providing education, training and/or training, providing teaching materials and/or offering (partial) examinations and/or an EVC trajectory and/or another form of assessment.
  • Employee: Every person who has an employment contract with a member of NRTO.
  • Self-employed: Someone who works as a freelancer or otherwise carries out assignments for the member.
  • Client: The natural person to whom the service is provided.


Article 2 Basic principles

  • Members will comply with the applicable laws and regulations in the Netherlands in their dealings with their employees, customers and partners.
  • The behavior of members must in all its actions, within the framework of the objectives of the association, be able to withstand the test of criticism in public.
  • Members behave responsibly and honestly towards the client and customer.
  • Members refrain from anything that could damage the reputation of the NRTO and its members.
  • The interests of clients and customers are respected.
  • Members will observe the values of free entrepreneurship and fair competition and will behave accordingly towards each other.
  • The actions of employees of the member or of a third party who carries out an assignment on behalf of the member are also seen as behavior of the member.
  • Members take into account the principles of good governance set out in Part 2 in their business operations, with regard to:
    • The way of doing business
    • Clients, customers and partners
    • Colleagues in the industry
  • In case of doubt about the interpretation of this code, the board or a duly authorized representative of the board has a decisive vote.


Part 2: Five principles of good governance

The NRTO member is expected to comply with the five principles of good governance:

Article 1 Care principle

  • Members of the NRTO work carefully, with qualified personnel for the learning activity. Everyone who works for the member has the specific knowledge and skills required to carry out the work in accordance with this code and to meet the NRTO quality requirements, as formulated in the NRTO quality mark.
  • Members commit themselves to using their own knowledge, experience and work capacity to the best of their ability for the client and customer.
  • Members of the NRTO avoid that in the relationship with the client other interests than those of the assignment execution itself will play a role, in order to be able to guarantee their independent position vis-à-vis the client.
  • Members do not give the client judgments about employees of the client from the training and/or examination process, unless the training and/or examination process (also) aims to arrive at a judgment about the participants in that training and/or examination process. In that case, the participants must have been informed in advance explicitly of the purpose(s) of the relevant training and/or examination process and of the standards on which the said judgment is based.
  • Members will never, directly or indirectly, in any way have financial connections or make financial contributions to persons, organizations, companies or related (legal) persons that directly or indirectly influence the awarding of an assignment.


Article 2. Legal certainty principle

  • Members have a complaints procedure.
  • As stated in the NRTO General Terms and Conditions, there is always a right of appeal to the Disputes Committee or the court (for private customers) or to the Commission for Quality Assurance (for business customers) after the complaints procedure has been completed.


Article 3 Reasonableness principle

  • The learning activity must be in reasonable proportion to the requested or described efforts and costs.


Article 4 Reliability principle

  • Customers and clients must be able to rely on the agreements made with a member.


Article 5 Transparency principle

  • Members make clear through a contract or confirmation what is expected of the member in the specific assignment situation.
  • Members make the rates/costs clear to an employer and customer in a clear and transparent way for the assignment. Members are transparent about additional costs.
  • In advance, a member makes known or makes public which general conditions apply.
  • If a member does not have its own general conditions, the NRTO general conditions apply.
  • If activities of strategic character, of which it can be suspected that this on a strategic level will yield a conflict of interest, are carried out for a competitor of the (potential) employer, the member will report this to this (potential) employer.


Part 3 Communication

  • The NRTO member respects the advertising code. Advertising gives a true and accurate picture and refrains from any suggestion of unrealistic results.
  • The NRTO member does not make advertising statements about the establishment of non-recognized ‘degrees’.
  • When there is open enrollment, the NRTO member reports for as far as applicable in student guide or -information respectively website at least the information mentioned in the checklist of the NRTO quality mark
  • The NRTO member is clear in the information provision about every learning activity what the participant learns.
  • The information provided through promotional material, study guides and on the website must be correct and informative. This also means that one, if applicable, the status of diplomas, certificates and testimonials, as well as the corresponding exam trajectory, is accurately reflected.


Government-recognized education

  • When it comes to recognized Higher Education, recognized MBO and recognized VO, the NRTO member is expected to comply with the requirements that are included in the relevant law.
  • It must be entirely clear whether a HO education, MBO education or VO education is government-recognized, only then may the term hbo education or mbo education or VO be used.
  • Specifically for the HO with regard to information about degree granting article 7.15 of the WHW and the agreements arising from that with the inspectorate apply.
  • If no application has been submitted or if the application is still pending, it may not be suggested that there is a hbo education or mbo education.
  • A member provides such information to students and prospective students about:
    • the institution,
    • the education to be followed in general,
    • the differentiation in the range of training,
    • the selection of students,
    • the names of the training courses, and
    • the degrees that are linked to the training courses,
  • that these students and prospective students are able to compare the training opportunities, form a good opinion about the content and the structure of the education or training that they have followed or will follow and the exams and they are able to prepare well for the required standards.
  • The names of HO and MBO education courses that are used in information material are in accordance with the accompanying CROHO-or CREBO-registration.


Part 4 Responsibilities to other NRTO members

The NRTO member behaves responsibly towards other NRTO members. This means in any case:

  • The member makes written agreements with fellow NRTO entrepreneurs about their contributions and responsibilities in the event of cooperation on an assignment.
  • If a member reasonably expects that an assignment from an employer, with whom another member is already working, will lead to a conflict, then it will inform both the employer and the other entrepreneur of these expectations.
  • A member does not use or copy products of fellow NRTO entrepreneurs, unless prior written permission has been given. This obligation applies to both the staff and the freelancers who work on a freelance basis for the member. All of this will take place in accordance with the applicable copyright laws.
  • The member will not engage in activities in his recruitment activities for new assignments with the aim of preventing another entrepreneur from receiving the same assignment on the basis of negative qualifications of the other entrepreneur.
  • The member refrains from an assessment of the work of another NRTO entrepreneur for the same employer, unless permission has been given for this after mutual consultation.
  • The management of a member is responsible for ensuring that his/her employees or the persons working for the member in the field of training and education comply with these rules of conduct.
  • Members do not take the initiative to offer a job to a person employed by an employer, other than after consultation with the employer. The member gives priority to the interests of the employer.


Part 5 Compliance

  • The code of conduct is offered for signature to new members.
  • In the event of non-compliance, a member may be held accountable for his actions by the Commission for Quality Assurance. The commission is empowered to impose the following.