Woolworths ill-considered foray into the home hardware business has ended in disaster with losses of 1.300,000,000! I cant imagine how you could lose so much, let alone the cost of the misery of lost jobs for the Masters staff and their suppliers.
What you see in the Masters debacle is a practical example of the error of line extension. It goes like this; We sell stuff in our supermarkets (Woolies), we do it well. Hardware stores like Bunnings have supermarket style processes and therefore we will be just as excellent and profitable if we build a chain of hardware stores (Masters).
Except its not true. The businesses are similar but different and skill, experience and profitability in 1 doesnt necessarily mean similar results in others.
Nevertheless the idea that successful businesses can extend their product line and enjoy equal success is beguiling. The Federal Government have found the concept attractive and, at least for people with disability, to the very real cost of results in employment services:
How might the thinking have flowed? - We privatised generic employment programs, that went well, therefore opening up the privileged position of disability employment services will mean tremendous gains as the efficiency of the private sector removes the soft fat from community services in other words organisations with no history in disability employment but demonstrated ability in what at least appears similar are just whats needed to improve results.
To some extent the thinking has merit and is reflected in what happened. However, you only have to look at present results to see that the myth of line extension in practice. Disability Employment Services deliver less than 3 years ago (significantly) in a larger economy with greater acceptance of workers with disability.
The smears that tarnished the reputation of excellent providers (poor performers) are shown clearly to be false.
Actually, Disability Employment Services (DES - like NOVA) have totally different skills sets, requires different attitudes and actions and behave very differently from generic employment services to succeed. 5 Star Job Active providers with 3 Star DES programs (and these results need close scrutiny).
Recognised for a failed experiment, Woolworths are going back to core business.
The same is true for disability employment. Its interesting to note that things knocked back (like the treatment of DSP voluntary jobseekers) as impossible, impractical and ineffective are now going to be used to return choice and opportunity for people with disability.
On the 6th of December 2012 I wrote to the then Minister (Kate Ellis) begging for the talent and commitment of hundreds of workers in the sector and the jobs of thousands of workers with disability to be maintained through the initiative now introduced by the current Minister (Jane Prentice).
The reply I got essentially told me to be quiet, the Stars were infallible and the high performing services were entitled to freedom of action.
Not so, the results tell a different tale.
Failed to the cost of people with disability.
Lets hope that the initiatives heralded by Peter Broadhead (DSS) and flagged by Minister Prentice are quickly introduced so that philosophically sound and commercially savvy programs can be exposed to the marketplace and allowed to improve outcomes for the people they most want to care for.
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Not so bad! Taken from: Today's Guardian at 4.09pm Tuesday 7th November 2017:
In a world full of discouragement there’s always a space for good news....
The NDIS mantra is 'choice and control'
To be valuable, choice needs to be informed.
Average Sydney Disability Employment Services placement rates are 34....
It's voting time at "Focusonability" - with a record number of films entered, a tremendous effort by more than 100 High Schools and 19 countries competing in the International section it was always going to be a hard job to pick a winner....
Choice & Control
The NDIS slogans around choice and control demonstrate the importance of consumer involvement in both the choice and control of supports they need.
However, in order to be valuable, choice needs to be informed by accurate data such is this: http://www....
Last week (14-16) it was my privilege to attend the 1st World Supported Employment Conference in Belfast, Northern Ireland.
"Employment for All - A Global Perspective" brought workers from around the globe (primarily Europe) to discuss best practice in supported employment....
Quality and the Stars Quality and the Stars
There have probably been few people more openly critical of the Disability Employment Service (DES) Star Ratings than me.
The Stars, ranging from 1 to 5 are supposed to give some insight into whether a service is a poor or high performing program....
Attended the Disability Employment Australia (DEA) forum in Canberra. THis is a regular get together that offers disability employment services tha chance to be kept up to date from our funding body and also listed to expert speakers on topics associated with the goal of seeing as many people as possible find and keep suitable employment....
NOVAs greatest asset is its staff. I suspect you would struggle to find the CEO of any organisation state their staff are not vital and at the core of business reputation and results....
A corner turned?
We are presently holding events to promote employment for people with disability - nor surprise there, that's our job.
What has been a surprise is the willingness of employers to come along and listen and more importantly, to consider adopting inclusive employment practices across their organisations....
Say No to Quotas!
The pernicious idea that 'quota's' might be the solution for disability employment continue:
Faced with the daunting task of improving the number of employment outcomes with out sacrificing the quality of service delivered to people with disability how have we fared (sort of Year in Review II)?
The number of placements made has seriously improved - up 31% in 2015 and a further 14% in 2016, NOVA operates at at rate of placement better than 150% over 2014!
Whats really exciting is that this has been achieved without compromising on the level of disability that can be supported by NOVA's teams (if anything this has risen)....
Famous last words!
O.K. - sorry that you need to cut and paste: http://www.smh.com.au/business/workplace-relations/100-million-payday-for-1anhour-staff-with-disabilities-20161216-gtcius....
Not sure if this will be my last blog post for 2016 but just in case, a quick look back at 2016:
Best ever year for total number of placements
Best ever year for long term employment outcomes
Best ever year for Apprenticeships and Traineeships
Best ever year for Transition to Work outcomes
Best ever year for media coverage
Best ever year for 'Focusonability'
Best ever year for Transition to Work (TTW)
How about 2017?
Looking good, so stay in touch and have a terrific holiday, be safe and hopefully Santa will bring you all that you wish for....
Choice is only of value when it's informed (written about this here previously)
I have the numbers for disability employment services (DES-ESS) up till 30th June this year and I am delighted to see that NOVA is responsible for almost 25% of all employment lasting 6 months or more (28 providers) and almost as many as next 2 providers combined....
The NDIS held out hope and promise to people with a disability, the opportunity to exercise choice and control and was heralded as the answer to the prayers of our most disadvantaged and vulnerable citizens....
Latest 'Stars' The effectiveness of Australian Disability Employment Services is recognised through a system called the 'Star Ratings'.
6 years ago NOVA was amongst the lower performing providers in Sydney, at least as measured through the Star's,
Regular readers will be aware of my unhappiness with things that I think are important to people with disability - stuff like, wages earned, hours worked etc....
Best Show on TV Morning All
Sorry you need to cut and paste: http://www.sbs.com.au/ondemand/video/802326595536/focus-on-ability-film-festival-2016
Best show on TV - bar none and, if you want to skip my bit I get off at 3:10 and you can get straight to some of the truly terrific films from this year's "Focusonability" short film festival....
Reform There is a review of Disability Employment Services and presently consideration is being given to what might best replace the current program.
NOVA needs you - come and join us
NOVA needs You!!
Wednesday 2nd November
Short notice (so really appreciate sharing) and we are holding an information session for potential new workers in a variety of roles within NOVA....
Yet again! Somewhere there is a definition of lunacy that runs along the lines of 'lunacy is when you do something the same way and expect a different result'
Today some of Australia's disability employment services will learn whether they will be allowed to continue to deliver their programs or whether they are to be replaced....