NDIS: Get big, get niche, or get out

Jul 14
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Criterion was the first company to bring together a conference designed, specifically, to help organisations prepare for the NDIS.

At our very first conference, at the beginning of 2013, we heard people say ‘If you want your organisation to survive under the NDIS you need to GET BIG, GET NICHE or GET OUT’ 

I’ll be honest with you;  at the time I thought it was all a bit dramatic.  Were things really that cut and dry?

As time has progressed though – and its still early days – I am seeing more and more organisation take this saying as their guide.

Get big

I’m seeing small and medium organisations prioritise expansion, be that independently or in the form of mergers and coalitions.  So far, it seems to be an approach that’s working.

Get niche

It’s the opposite to ‘if you can’t beat them join them’.  It’s ‘if you can’t beat them then be totally different’!   For organisations who already provide a unique service offering, the focus is on effectively communicating those points of difference.

Get out

This sounds quite pessimistic but it’s not just about closure.  Many organisation offer more than disability services and the NDIS could see them focus on these other areas and move out of the disability space. 

Yes, ‘Get big, get niche or get out’ is ringing true.  But, in observing organisation responses to the NDIS over the past 12 months, I’d add one more:

Get diverse

At the end of the day, organisations are concerned about cash flow, under this new funding model.  A possible solution would be to diversify service offerings (therefore funding pools) or to look at diverse sources of funding.  Corporate partnerships, social enterprise, social finance or for-profit arms are all potential revenue streams

Id love to hear from you about what your organisations has done (or is doing) to ensure its survival under the NDIS.  Are you getting big, niche or diverse?  Have you got out?  Would you add any other approaches to the catch-cry of NDIS survival?

I’m developing our next NDIS-oriented conference so if you’d like to share your story at that event, please respond to this blog or email me lindsey.eifler@criterionconferences.com

photo credit: Leo Reynolds via photopin cc

Submitted by Lindsey Eifler

Lindsey Eifler

Lindsey is a Senior Producer who specialises in conferences for the public and not-for-profit sectors. On Wednesdays and Fridays she has, arguably, the best office in the world; her home on the beautiful Central Coast.

One thought on “NDIS: Get big, get niche, or get out

  1. Thanks for posting this Jane. This is a REALLY inorptamt issue for all people with disabilities in Australia.My niece here in Queensland is an amazing 18 year old lady with autism. She is struggling to make the world understand what she wants to say. She has a very supportive father and sisters. But they can’t speak for her as much as they would fervently wish to be able to do so.I so hope that policy change can facilitate her access to the technology that she so needs to be able to make her way out into the real world after leaving the support of the Special Education system.That is just my family story. We hear of so many others every day on Spectronics’ phones and emails.

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