Over the past 36 years we – The Personnel Group – have assisted thousands of people with a disability, mental health condition or at risk of long-term unemployment find meaningful and sustained employment in the open jobs market.
At present, the Government’s Disability Employment Service delivery model is under review and reform, and we welcome that.
There are always opportunities to improve services and outcomes for vulnerable job seekers.
We don’t always get it right and neither does the broader employment services industry, however we pride ourselves on seeking feedback from jobseekers to continually improve what we do.
Our communities should expect the best of us, we are a vital link in bringing employers and vulnerable jobseekers together.
Over recent years there has been a growing perception of businesses profiteering off this vital government program.
Unfortunately, not all providers always do the right thing for their clients and are motivated by financial gain and not by creating equality through employment and building inclusive communities.
Shining a spotlight on and strenuously addressing employment service providers running clients through subpar programs to generate profit as their primary motivator instead of legitimate and life changing employment outcomes, will hopefully ensure the DES sector continues to help vulnerable jobseekers find sustainable work.
Delivering services in a manner that first and foremost benefit shareholders or owners does a great disservice to the thousands of jobseekers who rely on DES providers, and the thousands of dedicated staff who do amazing work to help them. It is not our way.
Any provider who is undermining the DES program integrity should be called out and made accountable, however let’s not forget the many providers who are doing the right thing by their clients.
There’s still plenty of good in DES.
These providers genuinely care about their clients achieving their employment goals and know that a stable and sustainable job can improve their lives immensely. A person with a job has a different set of choices than what can be achieved on welfare.
The unemployment rate for people with a disability is already too high, without DES providers who are ethically genuine that rate would be, sadly, so much higher.
As a long-standing provider, we don’t always get it right, but setting our standards high and reviewing our practices to know how to improve is always best practice.
Putting people above profit will always prevail, and when we get it right the outcome is not the financial gain, but knowing that we have helped an individual regain their confidence, pride, dignity, independence and a sense of belonging … this is when we know we have done our job right.