5 keys to success in employment services
1. Effective Assessments - Our Turning Point Assessment seeks to determine the most suitable time to deliver an intervention (e.g. counselling or training) based on an Applied Psychological Assessment to understand job seekers' attitudes towards readiness for employment. This targeted approach brings results.
2. Maintaining Engagement - Job Futures has consistently outperformed the JSA provider average for minimum contacts with clients during contract performance periods. We know the stronger the engagement the more quickly people address barriers and achieve employment.
3. Leadership Program - Skilled site leaders are key to effective delivery of employment services. We invest heavily in the professional development of our leaders. Job Futures received National Workforce Development Funding for our Leadership Program which delivers a Diploma in Employment Services. The program was part of a strategy to address the needs of our emerging leaders in what has become a demanding environment.
4. Online Learning Tools - Staff have 24 hour access to industry training through Turning Point, our online learning resource, with 1,175 resources to date that includes webinars and online tools.
5. Research & Innovation Team - Job Futures runs a research program which includes reviews of international and Australian best practice, stakeholder feedback, and encourages sector collaboration on pilot projects. It also identifies partnerships for research to drive continuous improvement and innovation. An example is our partnership with the University of Sydney, Queensland University of Technology and the University of Wollongong for the study into how formal and informal networks affect employment outcomes for the long-term and youth unemployed. This work is funded under the Australian Research Council Linkage Grants.
Demand-led employment strategy
A demand-led program starts with an employer and works backwards to develop a pipeline of employer-led skills training. This means designing and delivering services for job seekers based on the hiring requirements of employers. It is founded on the premise that the better the training meets the employer's needs, the more likely it is that the individual will get and keep the job.
Over the last 12 months Job Futures has focused on improving the way we work with medium to large employers. Historically our strength has been in local relationships formed by our members with local employers in their communities.
Our objective has been to introduce strategies to work with larger employers at both regional and national levels. After researching a number of different employer servicing models, Job Futures has adopted a demand-led employment strategy. The demand-led strategy aims to improve employment outcomes by ensuring the skills development we provide our job seekers meets employer requirements for available positions.
Turning Point: 26 week outcomes
The graph illustrates that 26 week outcomes for JSA have increased by up to 56% for those who are hardest to place and maintain employment.
Its implementation has increased performance across the board in all streams from 13 week to 26 week outcomes and improved the utilisation of our resources through a better focus of time.
Our Turning Point Assessment Model seeks to determine the most suitable time to deliver specific activities to job seekers to help move them towards employment. The model is based on an applied psychological assessment to accurately identify the 'state of change' in which a job seeker is in.
Designed in partnership with Esher House, the model is delivering promising results with placements for job seekers. (JF/Esher House internal data).
The graph above shows the conversion rate % of only those with an outcome and not the general conversion rate.
Breakthrough: Up to 56% outcomes increase
Matt Little, CEO of Job Futures, says, "The model represents a significantly new way of working in Employment Services and is delivering better results for Australia's unemployed."
Job Futures Turning Point Assessment Model was developed in conjunction with leading UK research organisation Esher House and launched in October 2013.
This unique assessment approach is used to differentiate between job seekers that are able to gain and sustain employment and those that require more intensive support in order to secure employment. This has enabled Job Futures to effectively match the type of assistance it provides to individual job seekers regardless of how long they have been unemployed.
The model focuses on administering an applied psychology assessment that accurately identifies what "stage of change" the job seeker is in. Those who are found to be in the ACTING (ACTION) stage of change are what are normally referred to as "work ready". They are willing and able to work and can be directed towards activities best designed to help them gain and maintain employment.
Job seekers that are assessed in the other stages of change can be assigned appropriate interventions that will move them into the ACTING (ACTION) phase.
Working with gas producer QGC
BUSY At Work and QGC Pty Ltd have created the QGC Strengthening Local Workforces Program. This will develop a local labour force in non-coal seam gas industries in the Western Downs, Gladstone, North Burnett and Banana Shire regions of Queensland.
The program will contribute to creating sustainable communities, attracting 200 apprentices and trainees.
Participation in the QGC Strengthening Local Workforces Program is free for businesses within the Western Downs, Gladstone, North Burnett and Banana Shire regions. The program will match local businesses with the right apprentice or trainee and then provide a structured mentoring program to support the participant to complete their qualification. The program will complement existing Federal Government incentives available.
SBS story on Job Futures member and youth unemployment
Job Futures member Youth Projects' training programs were featured in this story from SBS News about youth underemployment and how they're helping skill young people to combat unemployment and underemployment.
Youth unemployment in Australia has risen sharply but so has youth underemployment. Today, young people are more likely to be underemployed - to have some work but want more hours - than at any time in the last 36 years. The unemployment rate among those aged 15 to 24 at July 2014 stands at 14.1 per cent - the highest rate since October 2001.