There is no doubt that the recent Royal Commission enquiry ‘ruffled many feathers in the NDS Providers Industry’. Though these enquiries are naturally uncomfortable, they also provoke a necessary review of dated and somewhat archaic processes and practices ahd spearhead radical change to better serve our people.
As a result the NDS Industry Vision has been clarified and updated to better support the people we are taking a stand for in the employment sector.
From observation there are currently 2 categories of NDS providers in the market -
Providers that know about the changes but don't know how to take the next steps to implement them, and
Providers that have really taken these changes in their stride and have successfully implemented the changes
At Buyability we’ve supported our providers to pass through the learning process of both and are sharing this piece to encourage other industry members to feel inspired and uplifted by the new changes that have been put in place. Changes that ensure greater choice, control and opportunities for people with disability in the employment paths they choose.
As a starting point it's important to understand the bigger picture and why these changes are important…
The Vision -
By 2025 the supported employment sector will:
Ensure widespread provision of supported employment as a best practice work option enabling significantly increased numbers of people with disability to participate in the economy.
Promote and provide access to skill-building opportunities and career pathways for people with disability in a wide range of employment options and settings.
Provide high quality employment conditions that reflect community expectations and industrial relations legislation for people with disability.
Operate sustainable businesses producing high quality products and services which harness technology for the benefit of their employees with disability.
Comprehensively report on the sector’s social and economic impact so that supported employers and their commercial partners can demonstrate their contribution to building a more inclusive and equitable society.
Why the vision is important -
Achieving the vision will translate into wider employment opportunities for more people with disability, and help to reach the Government’s objective of 30% of working age NDIS participants in employment by 2023. Implementing the vision commits supported employers to:
Diversifying and strengthening work options, including those in the emerging digital economy
Upskilling their support workforce to deliver a wider range of employment options
Playing a key role in delivering the goals of NDIS Participant Employment Strategy 2020- 2022
Implementing new wage setting arrangements
Supporting reforms and recommendations arising from the Disability Royal Commission
As work to deliver the vision takes place, we envisage the sector offering comprehensive employment options for people with disability, including:
Transition to open employment
Supported open employment
The next step is understanding some of the key ‘practical steps’ you get to make in your business to come into better alignment with the vision.
Based on this, Social Enterprises should develop an action plan focusing on the following as immediate priorities:
· Examining their capacity to provide employment support to an increased number of NDIS participants of working age
· Investigating if they can support NDIS participants (both jobseekers and their existing employees) in a wider range of employment options
· Considering strategies to mitigate the impact of cost increases on the sustainability of their commercial operations, including wages, superannuation and current inflationary pressures
Social Enterprises can also assist NDS in its data collection and benchmarking exercises by participating in the 2021-22 Vision sector survey and entering their 2021-22 data on the BuyAbility Social and Economic Impact Tool.
Together, we can make the Vision a Reality.