Mismanagement at the highest level seems destined to continue despite a change in name for the people that hand out money to disability employment programs. The present status is that these may be designed to help people with a disability find work or may be constructed to extract profit from the Australian public.
‘Performance’ management is delivered through a process titled ‘Star Ratings’ an Orwellian fiction that recently (March 2013) drove dozens of excellent programs out of the industry, saw hundreds of highly talented staff drift away and abandoned thousands of workers with disability to their fate.
The nonsense that is the ‘Star Ratings’ (I need to point out that 16 out of 17 NOVA sites significantly improved in the recently released figures) continues to oppress innovation, reward gaming and further threaten the prospects of people with disability, seemingly without protest.
Stars are awarded on a scale of 1-5 with ‘5’ Stars being (supposedly) a recognition of excellence and ‘1’ a ticket to oblivion.
It is a wretched system that MUST always produce results to a pre-determined formula – programs can’t all be 5 Stars, approximately 30% must be 1-2 and 30% must be 4-5 with the rest puddling along in the middle – doesn’t matter what everyone does, how hard they work or what results they achieve, while individual sites may improve (as we have) the distribution rates remain the same.
What does that mean?
Let’s look at recent comment from the body that is supposed to represent disability employment services:
“Of the 87 DES-ESS contracts rated one or two stars, 74 (85.06%) were generalist and 13 (14.94%) were specialist. The majority of one and two star specialist DES-ESS contracts belong to Vision Australia (2, 15.38%, Blind and Vision Impaired) and Ostara Australia (2, 15.38%, Mental Health), see Figure 9. The majority of one and two star generalist DES-ESS contracts belong to WISE Employment (9, 12.16%), Job Futures (5, 6.76%), Sureway Employment and Training (4, 5.41%) and Community Bridging Services (4, 5.41%)”
“As signalled in the DES-ESS request for tender, the five year contracting period is subject to at least two business reallocations. Performance at a one or two star level may be in scope for reallocation. As we have recently seen in the DES-DMS reallocation, contracts performing at the one star level are extremely likely to exit.”
So at some point toward the end of this year, a reallocation will occur that will see those organisations listed above booted out or their share of the market place so ‘adjusted’ as to make them unviable – and if not these then a similar number of others.
It is difficult to put into words the total stupidity of these actions, the baseless framework from which these have been constructed, or the magnitude of the disaster they have and will continue to create.
There is nothing wrong with the program listed above. I can personally vouch for the quality of some and am sure of the ability of the rest.
What’s more important though is this simple fact; the people they serve both created them and chose them to support their vocational goals – these are Australian operated community programs.
Has the community said ‘go’?
Do people with disability wish them to go?
Are each effective in supporting the people (this next bit is important!) THAT HAVE CHOSEN TO GO TO THESE?
But that’s not enough. It is not enough that people who have a disability don’t want them to go, chose to attend them and are happy with the provision of service they receive – there’s a ‘quality improvement process’ that can steamroll the wishes of the most disadvantaged to serve the convenience of policy makers.
There’s only 1 way to measure quality and that’s not being applied today – it’s through the marketplace. Reward reduction in welfare, independence in employment, wages earned, longevity of employment and post subsidy job retention.
Use these as markers of ‘Stardom’ and lets see where those program listed above sit – lets see who thrives then
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....