Having a choice about which Disability Employment Service (DES) provider you use is great – but it can be difficult to know how to find the right DES provider for you.

DES providers such as AimBig are organisations that support people with disabilities, health conditions or injuries prepare for, and engage in, employment.

Disability Employment Support providers create a bridge between you, the client, and your potential future employers. DES providers can also support you with up-skilling and getting your expenses reimbursed.

Here are 5 things you need to know when searching for a DES provider.

What sort of services I can access?

There are many services and programs that can support you in your search for work and once you start working.

Services and programs include:

  • Assistance to monitor and maintain Mutual Obligation or compulsory participation requirements
  • A skills assessment for support in managing whole-life issues
  • Training, education and work hardening programs
  • Job design – assisting employers to design jobs that incorporate necessary flexibilities
  • Job carving – analysing work duties in a given job and identifying other suitable tasks that may be appropriate to your skills and abilities
  • Accessing and arranging employer incentives such as wage subsidies, workplace modifications or the Supported Wage System (SWS)
  • Support services for people who need extra support in the workplace
  • Relocation assistance if you need to move to for your job
  • Work experience through the National work experience program (NWEP)
  • Programs to improve essential reading, writing, math’s and speaking skills
  • Personal support for people living with mental health conditions

The Employment Assistance Fund can help cover the costs of such things as workplace or work vehicle modifications, communication devices like Braille displays or embossers, AUSLAN interpreters, and disability awareness training.

What is required of me?

Most participants will have a job plan developed which will include Mutual Obligation Requirements such as attending appointments, attending activities and applying for a certain number of jobs per month.

What happens if I don’t meet the requirements?

If your payments are conditional on your Mutual Obligation requirements, then any failure to meet those requirements could mean your payments are reduced or even stopped.

Am I eligible?

According to the Australian Government’s Job Access, jobseekers are eligible for Disability Employment Services if they:

  • Are living with a disability, injury, or health condition
  • Are at least 14 years old (but not old enough to qualify for the Age Pension) and of legal working age in their state/territory
  • Have a future work capacity with intervention of at least 8 hours and less than 30 hours per week
  • Are not working at, or above, their assessed work capacityAre an Australian resident
  • Are not studying full-time (other than school leaver or transitioning from eligible program)
  • Be in receipt of an income support payment, except where the job seeker is exempt from Employment Services Assessment (ESAt) requirements, a current NDIS participant, pre-release prisoner or required to undertake a DES program to satisfy Program of Support requirements

How do I find a DES provider that is right for me?

You can search for a DES provider via the Job Access website but some things to consider include:

  • Ask people you know which providers they have had good (and bad) experiences with
  • Check providers’ star ratings and reviews
  • Check providers’ website to see if they provide all the services to meet your needs
  • Contact them – sometimes the best way to know if a provider is right for you is to speak directly with someone there
  • Try them out. You get to choose your DES provider, and you can change at any time.

AimBig Employment’s philosophy is bigger than employment. For more than 20 years, we have been going above and beyond in supporting people with a disability live up to their passions, strengths, and dreams.

We take time to get to know you, and what you want – and we aim to get you the job that is right for you.

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