The following is taken from the ABC’s “The Drum”: http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/4090816.html
Disability employment: noble cause, failed policy
Pink batts, school halls, budget deficits, border protection - the list of policy failures from our Government keeps growing. Now we can add another name to the list: the National Disability Recruitment Coordinator (NDRC) program.
If you have never heard of the NDRC program, you would not be alone. It is an obscure program with the noble cause of creating more employment opportunities for people with disability by supporting large employers like Woolworths, Westpac and Australia Post.
Sounds nice in theory, but is it working? The short answer is no. The long answer is that the program has consistently failed to meet its employment targets, even after those targets have been revised downward year after year.
Now, everybody knows I am a whinger and a Jeremiah and I carp on about failures in government policy and the fact is that the employers noted above and others using the NDRC are brilliant, fabulous places to work that go out of their way to take on board the individual needs of people with Disability.
The failure doesn’t lie with employers
So, then, is the failure’s WorkFocus’s (they deliver the program)?
Nope, they have worked hard to get their program recognised and they try to get as many employers involved as possible.
So why hasn’t it worked??
For the same reason the various incarnations of the same program have failed for more than 20 years – the people that designed it don’t understand the needs of people with disability. Coming from a fundamentally flawed perspective an employer’s needs focussed program MUST fail.
That’s OK, here’s the deal : people with a disability are just that; they have a disability. No put down, no slur intended but each has a disability and therefore they require accommodation in their employment. That can come in various forms but each person is an individual and they need an individual approach to their career development.
Imagine 2 filing cabinets.
In the first cabinet are a list of job seekers and their various abilities/needs. Along comes an employer and offer the service provider a job. The service provider looks at the requirements and selects the person closest to the employers stated requirements.
In the second cabinet is another list of job seekers and their various needs. The service provider takes the first file, looks at the requirements of the job seeker and then goes out to find an employer that can be worked with to design a job that matches the job seekers individual needs.
One fits a person to a job, the other looks to tailor a job to the person.
The differences may appear subtle but they can mean the difference between success and failure for people with any disability of significance.
The danger is that repeating this program and/or similar incarnations will weaken employer support for our disability employment programs. (I actually spoke about this danger at a public forum in 1990!).
This is what works or would work (of course I can prove it, wouldn’t suggest otherwise!):
1. Be really proud of, and have absolute faith in, your product (people that have a disability)
2. Market individual job seekers for what they can do and NOT on the basis of subsidy (foreign owned for profits please read)
3. Use the NDRC to simply advertise the value of our job seekers.
4. Individually tailor the job and duty statement to match employer’s expectations
5. Provide extensive post placement support as required.
Not rocket science, enshrined in Disability Services Act (1996), demonstrated to work and leads to good will from employers and workers alike.
See me for more detail
Would you like a face-to-face meeting with Martin via Skype? Click the button below to make an appointment
Subscribe to this Blog - blog.novaemployment.com.au Copy the link above and paste it into your favourite Reader to subscribe to an RSS feed of this blog. To watch a short video explanation of RSS and how it helps you save time reading the web click here
Your Comments There are currently no comments on this article
The records keep falling! Following on from last post, I'd like to give some public recognition to my staff who have not only stood up under the tests of the Pandemic, they've continued to achieve record breaking results....
Never been so busy! At the risk of jinxing it, there's never been a better time to be looking for work - NOVA is getting scores of inquiries for workers, breaking all records each week with no sign of a let-up in sight!
The demand might be simply a post lockdown mini boom and maybe the bubble will pop - I have to say there's no sign of that....
July Rant There's an inquiry into Disability Employment Service and how best the new National Contract (2023) might serve the needs of the Commonwealth - note, that I haven't said, 'the needs of people with disability'....
Review Australia's $1bn disability employment service criticised over poor outcomes and reduced employment - https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2021/mar/31/australias-disability-employment-down-3-in-past-decade-as-service-scheme-criticised-for-poor-outcomes....
Thank you Mark Zuckerberg (not!) Friends of NOVA may have seen our Facebook page is down - courtesy Mark Zuckerberg NOVA/Focus are victims of much larger forces - no idea when or if we'll be restored - more as events unfold....
They Don't Count Gaining or holding formal qualifications can set a person up for a lifetime career. Holding appropriate qualifications that can lead to lifelong careers, tradespeople generally make a good income and enjoy well deserved respect....
Benchmarks To access NOVA Employment or any Disability Employment Service (DES), almost everyone is required to be assessed by the Services Australia Services (Centrelink) to determine their "Benchmark" hours: Benchmark hours are the pay point for service providers; being the minimum working hours required for the DES provider to bill the Government and the assessed maximum hours a person is deemed capable of working with DES support....
International Day of People with a Disability
International Day of People with a Disability
It's IDPwD and we have a 1 hour 'special' screening on SBS from 4.30 this afternoon.
Our Ryan Goodwin has done a great job of selecting some of the great entries from NOVA's 'Focusonability' short film festival - we love the Festival and hope that you'll love these films, gathered from around the world....
2020 - the first half When the going gets tough, the tough get going
Good! - Now they've left us, let's look at reality - when the going gets tough, many people suffer and dis-proportionally, people with disability suffer more....
Countdown Clock II
What's the countdown clock all about?
It's our closing time and a countdown to the end of a truly remarkable month of extraordinary effort by my staff....
Countdown Clock Regular viewers will have noticed a countdown clock ticking away (above)
What's that all about?
Can't say - you have to wait till 4.30pm (a little earlier for staff)
Just the best 3 One thing we all love is a winner which is why there's a smile on my face it will be pretty hard to shift.
There's a nightmare pandemic sweeping the world (carried off my mum), the economy has tanked in a never before seen disaster that's left more than a million Aussies unemployed and the only news seems to be bad news....
More than Money!
If asked, most of us would say we went to work for the money, to pay our bills or support our family.
All true, and yet work means so much more:
Prior to finding a job with NOVA employment Glenn* struggled to keep jobs for more than a few months and was generally working as a dishwasher in restaurants which he found to be quite unsatisfying work....
Life Changers II
How are you in the mornings (or evenings, or nights)? NOVA is an 'old school' Disability Employment Service - we find work in the general community with identical pay and conditions as those enjoyed by people who dont have a disability....
Life Changers Required! Received yesterday:
I was unemployed for 24 years because of my disability. I was looking for a job for the last 2 and half years. With the help of (NOVA Staff) I found suitable job and working in the law company for last one year....
Don't know about you but I have felt pretty bruised from all the horrible stuff brought upon us by this damn virus - seeing so many folk losing their jobs is particularly awful and the uncertainty generated for everyone, particularly for workers who have a disability is dreadful to see....
Best Ever II
Following from last post:
NOVA Employment has operated for 30 years. Comparing all results from previous years, February 2020 has been our most successful to date - Following on from January that's 2 in a row and every indication March will also be a record breaker....
NOVA Employment posted another 'best ever' result for the first month of 2020.
Despite the most dreadful natural disasters and with many businesses closed for the holidays, the NOVA team delivered more new workers than in any previous January results, beating past 5 years average by 25% and previous (2017) 'best ever' numbers by 5%....
Depressing cracked record!
A good friend will occasionally pull me up with the reminder that I have a tendency to rant, 'rave on slop jaw' if I remember correctly....
Big Win! Saturday night saw a big win for the NOVA team and for people with disability when our Podcast partners NOVA Entertainment- no relationship other than mates - received the following:
BEST ORIGINAL PODCAST - BRANDED
Focus On Ability; Nova Employment & the Nova Entertainment Podcast Team , NOVA Entertainment
BEST ORIGINAL PODCAST - UNBRANDED
Hamish & Andy; Hamish Blake & Andy Lee, PodcastOne Australi
Taken from the web: https://www....