How to action research & insight to minimise risk in NDIS workforce development

May 18
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We believe delivering a great people experience will lead to our best results as an organisation.

I hear some of you say, “but surely it’s about your customers, if they are happy they will buy more”.

True, but who makes your customers happy? Customers (at least on their own) don’t imagine new services, improve service delivery or lift productivity in your organisation. Your people do.

In a human services business, people are also your most significant asset, and a large chunk of your annual operating budget. It’s a game of risk and reward and it starts with understanding your people and their experience.

Imagine your people are your customers. Customer Experience is the new frontier in giving context to the way a customer feels about an organisation based on all their interactions with it. We believe the People Experience within an organisation will be the new engagement measure – deep, qualitative understanding of your people helps you translate your people’s emotional response (i.e. their experience) into something tangible you can work with and improve.

Partner with people that know about this stuff. Your Customer and Marketing teams live and breathe customer experience and research. The insights they gain are the cornerstone of successful organisations in designing products and services that reflect the needs and/or wants of your customers. This is great news – this new frontier of the People Experience is not that new after all – it’s just something reimagined! You can borrow, adapt and generally plagiarise the thinking, methodologies and concepts that are used in the customer’s space. If you are not understanding your customers in this way – you should be.

The experience of your customers and your people are two parts of the whole. In our business, we’ve been able to overlay our customer’s experience with our people experience and found that they feel and want very similar things. This is great news for us, because we can now see how improving our people experience will improve our customer experience, which will deliver great results for our organisation.  More importantly, it helps us achieve our purpose of making possibilities a reality for both our people and our customers.

It’s a sector challenge, but how do organisations respond? I don’t know about anyone else, but for a while I’ve been trying to wrap my head around this challenge of the workforce growth needed to deliver this great social impact change we call the NDIS. In Queensland alone, 20,000 new jobs are being created – something like 50,000 across the country.  Firstly, where are all these people going to come from?  We struggle to keep good people in the sector now! More importantly for individual organisations is, how are we going to keep the really good ones that will help us achieve our purpose?  

It’s going to be a candidate’s market – a war for talent like our sector has never seen before.

Knowing that pricing is fixed (at least for the time being), organisations are adjusting to the new funding model, trying to find ways to reduce overheads and wastage, and the enormity of the new workforce need. The one thing that will help you stand out is your People Experience.  To borrow an age old saying – build it and they will come.

Learn how to support young people transition from care to independence at the improving outcomes for vulnerable children conference, 27th & 28th November 2018, Sydney.

Submitted by Chris Dougherty

Chris Dougherty

Chris is General Manager, People, Learning & Culture at Endeavour Foundation. He has a 10 year career in the NFP sector in leading enabling functions with a particular interest in People & Culture across mental health, multicultural health, aged, community and disability care. He has enjoyed success in bringing a commercially astute mindset to the people and broad enabling functions of community organisations as they adapt to new funding models and client needs. Passionate about the ‘people experience’ within organisations and its critical link to the customer experience and therefore business performance leads to the desire to deeply understand our customer and our people through insight.

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