Projects

Designing new approaches to service integration, system alignment and cultural change.


Our projects are shaped by five priority pillars focused on schemes and systems, GPs and other providers, employers and workplaces to support our strategy and build on the findings of past projects.

Schemes and Systems Pillar 1 - measuring the movement of people between systems
Schemes and Systems Pillar 2 - Supporting people moving between systems
Employers and Workplaces Pillar 3 - Improving employer capability
Employers and Workplaces Pillar 4 - Driving cultural and behavioural change
Providers Pillar 5 - Supporting general practioners (GPs) to facilitate work participation
Schemes and Systems
Pillar 1 - measuring the movement of people between systems Pillar 1
Pillar 2 - Supporting people moving between systems Pillar 2
Employers and Workplaces
Pillar 2 - Improving employer capability Pillar 3
Pillar 4 - Driving cultural and behavioural change Pillar 4
Providers
Pillar 5 - Supporting general practioners (GPs) to facilitate work participation Pillar 5

Pillar 1 - Measuring movement of people between systems

The Challenge

  • Australia’s income and benefit support systems are complex, fragmented & highly disparate
  • In 2015/16, 786,000 people with a health condition or disability were estimated to not be participating in work and $37.2 billion was spent on income support in the same year.
  • People move from ‘upstream’ systems of benefit and income support to ‘downstream’ systems – this can be minimised through supporting people to engage in good work.

Opportunities

By understanding how the systems work, sharing data and better practice, we can improve system design to achieve better alignment, outcomes and experiences.

Project Activities

This project expands on our previous research in the Cross-Sector Systems Project where we developed the first national conceptual map of Australia’s ten major benefit and income support systems. This work identified opportunities for ‘upstream’ systems such as superannuation, life insurance and workers’ compensation to drive work participation outcomes early.

This project will identify the relationship between various compensation and income support systems including: employer provided entitlements; workers’ compensation; motor vehicle accident compensation; life insurance and superannuation; social welfare and disability support; and Veteran’s compensation. This project will quantify the movement of people and using qualitative research to understand their experience and develop a systems dynamics model mapping the movement across the major systems.

Approach: Monash University in partnership with The University of Melbourne is undertaking a study using qualitative research methods to survey people with lived experience who have interacted with one or more income support system. The project also includes the development of a data model to quantify the current movement and predict future movement of people between income support systems.

Read the final survey and interview report

Status: Commenced November 2020

View the Scheme and System publications

Pillar 2 - Supporting people moving between systems

The Challenge

  • People are ‘falling through the cracks’ as they transition between benefit and income support systems
  • People feel they need to be “twice as sick to get half the help”
  • People are drawing on personal financial and social assets while awaiting support

Opportunities

Implement best practice case management universally across systems, achieving outcomes earlier and reducing unnecessary movement between systems.

Project Activities

This project will design and trial a Transition Support Service for people exiting the workers’ compensation sector to another system, for example life insurance, superannuation or social security. This project builds on findings commissioned by the Partnership that showed people are most vulnerable as they transition between systems and no system currently provides support at this critical juncture.

Approach: EML are leading an action research project to design and trial a Transition Support Specialist service to provide tailored support to participants exiting the Victorian Workers’ compensation system and potentially entering into another system. Measuring the effectiveness of the transition support service will help to identify what support is needed at this critical time to help people maintain focus on their work participation goals and understand how to navigate the systems.

Status: Commenced August 2020

View the Scheme and System publications

Pillar 3 - Improving employer capability

The Challenge

  • Less than 50% of employers have experience in recruiting or supporting someone with a health condition or disability
  • 50% of employers are not confident in their business’ ability to support people with a physical or psychological disability or health condition

Opportunities

  • Employers who have experience working with someone with a disability or health condition were more likely to recruit and support someone in the future
  • Organisations can be more productive when you make the most of employees’ different abilities and find roles where the health condition can become an advantage
  • Cross sector alignment of employment services across schemes and systems to better serve employers and people with a health condition or disability.

Project Activities

This project will develop new ways to improve the capability of employers to support people with health conditions or disability. This project is driven by evidence delivered through the Partnership that showed many employers don’t have the experience or confidence to support people with a health condition or disability in the workplace.

Approach: Department of Education, Skills and Employment will lead this project. This work has significant importance with the recent impact of COVID-19 on the employment landscape.

Status: Commenced April 2021

Employer and workplace publications

Pillar 4 - Driving cultural and behavioural change

The Challenge

  • Only 1 in 5 employers could identify the benefits of employing someone with a health condition or disability
  • 50% of employers do not consider it a priority to recruit or support someone with a disability or health condition

Opportunities

Community awareness to normalise ill health and disability

Project Activities

This project is driven by research commissioned by the Partnership that showed 41 percent of employers did not consider it a priority to employ people with health conditions or disability and that most people experienced significant cultural barriers that impeded their pathway to gainful employment.

Approach: We are exploring opportunities to deliver an awareness program that will change attitudes and behaviours towards people with a health condition or disability and their connection to work.

Status: On-hold

Employer and workplace publications

Pillar 5 - Supporting General Practitioners (GPs) to facilitate work participation

The Challenge

The GP role in supporting work participation is complex and confusing with different systems requiring GPs to play different roles

Opportunities

  • GPs play a central role in supporting work participation for people with a health condition or disability
  • A team-based care coordination approach is needed between GPs, employers, providers and the systems to support work participation

Project Activities

The Partnership developed Australia’s first national Principles on the role of the GPs in supporting work participation. The Principles have been officially recognised as a Supported Position Statement by the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners and endorsed by the Heads of Workers’ Compensation Authorities. Given the employment challenges with COVID-19, GPs play a critical role in supporting Australians to engage in ‘good work’.

Approach: This project involves working closely with employers, industry, medical practitioners, the ACTU, people with lived experience and the systems to help us design the best ways to practically and meaningfully implement the Principles. This project will engage with RACGP to provide information that could contribute to future reviews of GP curriculum.

Status: Commenced March 2020

Provider and GP publications

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Our work

Building on our past projects and research, we will continue to drive change guided by strategic objectives, priority pillars and outcomes.

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Publications

Designing and trialling best practice approaches to improve work participation.

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Our achievements

The Partnership is a national collaboration with strong representation across sectors and systems.


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