Behind the scenes summary

Job Futures CEO Matt Little on the year that was and what's coming

Job Futures CEO, Matt Little, reports on our achievements for 2014 and outlines what you can expect from Job Futures in the next financial year.

Highlights of the year include:

  • Unprecedented confidence in the Job Futures model and the subsequent growth in our caseload numbers;
  • The strengthening of our links with employers;
  • Success in being awarded the Green Army contract; and,
  • The accreditation against the new National Standards for Disability Services and certification under the Department of Employment's Quality Assurance Framework applied in Job Services Australia.
Job Futures Chair talks strategy

Hear Jenni Mack, Chair of the Job Futures Board, talk about the year that's been, the year ahead, and the focus on a new strategic plan which will guide the company over the next three years.

Members talk about why Job Futures matters

Three Job Futures members, Access Community Group, Marillac and ACSO, talk about the range of benefits that membership brings to their organisations. Benefits include: support to deliver services; networking and knowledge transfer; along with the ability to retain their organisations' own identities.

Employment consultants talk about changing lives

Listen to front line staff from CHESS, ACSO and Marillac talk about how a job can change a person's life. As one employment consultant put it, "jobs are everything - they are life changing".

Job Futures continues to grow

The addition of these nine new organisations further strengthens the positive impact Job Futures has in building a better future for all Australians through employment, education and training.

MTC Australia: Operating across New South Wales, South Australia and Victoria, MTC offers support through a range of training courses, employment services, youth programs and community initiatives.

Employment Directions: Employment Directions provides employment and youth services to communities in the Gawler, Barossa, Mid North, Yorke Peninsula and Port Pirie regions of South Australia.

National Centre of Indigenous Excellence: NCIE, based in Redfern, Sydney, builds capability and creates opportunity for young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders through a range of life-changing programs.

IntoWork Australia: IntoWork is the parent body for a group of businesses providing workforce solutions including recruitment services and apprenticeships across Victoria, New South Wales, South Australia and Tasmania.

Workways Australia: Based in East Gippsland, Workways supports communities in eastern Victoria, southern and northern NSW through JSA, DES and Green Army.

Settlement Services International: SSI is the peak state wide representative body for the 11 Migrant Resource Centres (MRC) and Multicultural Services across NSW.

Hanover Welfare Services: Based in Melbourne, Hanover provides a range of supports to people who are homeless, or at imminent risk of becoming so, not only addressing accommodation needs but building independence through training and employment support.

MTA Apprenticeships Plus: Based in Sydney, MTA Apprenticeships Plus is an automotive specialist RTO and group training company dedicated to developing the future trades people of the automotive industry through training and employment.

Advance Personnel: Advance Personnel is a specialist employment agency for people with disability, providing quality support for job seekers and businesses in Canberra and the surrounding area.

Meet Geoff Rickard, our new General Manager, Corporate Services

"I was fortunate to join Job Futures in March this year. The organisation aligns with my interests in the not for profit sector, including improving efficiencies and ensuring the sustainability of community based organisations.

I came on board at a particularly busy time of the year, focusing on our year end staff management and budgeting processes. It was pleasing to finish the year in a good financial position, including a healthy surplus and strong cash reserves. This was particularly important as we headed into the Employment Services tender period.

With our three year strategy being bedded down I expect next year to be focused on continually improving our services and value to members. This will include planning for the launch of our new brand identity in May 2015 while supporting the development and implementation of our service delivery model for the new Employment Services contract. With a strong Corporate Services team I'm excited about the opportunities that the New Year will bring, working to continually strengthen the Job Futures network."

Member immersions, capturing the knowledge

This year Job Futures staff carried out 39 immersions at member sites. The aim was to collect information about activities, expertise, local connections and what's working as well as identifying areas for improvement. From this, Job Futures identified new approaches to strengthen their services and share best practice across the network.

One example is our work with member organisation Employment Options, South Australia. Employment Options required a tailored employer strategy and were keen to learn from successful strategies being applied in the network.

We helped them identify skills in demand in their region, and survey employers to determine the top 3 local industries with skills in demand.

As a result of the survey findings, Employment Options partnered with the Food, Tourism & Hospitality Industry Skills Advisory Council SA (FTHISAC) and introduced a pilot program to meet the needs of local employers in the sector. The program prepared job seekers with a `ticket' in the food manufacturing industry, comparable to White Cards in construction.

Early indicators are positive for the program's success, with 4 of the 8 participants employed and one commenced in a work trial. Plans are for the program to run in the Fleurieu Peninsula, Kangaroo Island and the Southern Vales.

Vale Patricia Frost

Patricia served on the Board of Job Futures from 2009 to 2014, making an invaluable contribution to our network through her input to Board strategy and decision-making and as a member of the Governance, Compliance and Membership Committee.

A true veteran of Employment Services, Patricia was the CEO of Inner West Skills Centre, a role she held for more than 20 years. During that time she saw every iteration of services for the unemployed, from block grant funding and the privatisation of the CES, to today's Job Services Australia.

When questioned about her motivation to continue to provide services over such a long period and often in very difficult circumstances Patricia responded "I'm still joyful when someone with severe barriers gets a job and keeps it...".

Patricia was an inspiration to her team at IWSC and to the staff of Job Futures and the wider Job Futures network. She will be deeply missed.

Farewell to Job Futures Patron - Dame Quentin Bryce

Dame Quentin stepped down as Governor General on March 27, 2014 at which time her vice-regal patronage of Job Futures also ceased.

Over the eight years of her patronage Dame Quentin showed an interest in the work of Job Futures as portrayed in the annual report, always responding with a comment on a particular story. She also visited member IMPACT in Bundaberg - twice.

In August 2011 Dame Quentin opened IMPACT's new building, returning only 17 months later following the devastating floods in the area to show her support and give encouragement to the team in the massive clean-up operation.

Job Futures wishes Dame Quentin and her husband much happiness and satisfaction in the next stage of their lives.