NPA - Ongoing Support Assessors Series 4th Feb 2010

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					     NPA - Ongoing Support Assessors Series 4th Feb 2010

     Part 1

         Present:        (AR) Anne Rainger
                         (SW) Sue Williams
                         (PJ) Patricia James
                         (JM) Jacqui Moulang
                         (JB) John Bennett
                         (TEL) Telstra operator

AR      I’d like to welcome everybody today to the information session for the National Panel of
        Assessors, both for those people in the room and those people on LiveMeet. My name is Anne
        Rainger and I work in Employment Systems Group in the Provider Consultation team. Over the
        last 18 months our group has been doing a lot of consultation on the system for both the
        JobSearch Australia and Disability Employment Services IT release. We were wrapping up the
        consultation for the DES IT system build and we realised that there was a need for information
        to go out on the system for National Panel of Assessor providers. So we have coordinated this
        with our policy and training colleagues and that’s how these sessions came about today. I’ll just
        give you a bit of background about the consultation that we’ve done so far. We set up an IT
        advisory group that has representatives from peak bodies NESA, ACE, Jobs Australia, NDS and
        ARPA and the CEOs of those peak bodies meet with the department monthly and we get to
        discuss the big broader IT system build and where we’re heading with that, and they’ve also
        been asked to review some of the system prototypes and give us feedback from an industry-wide
        perspective so that’s been very useful. We have also sent a survey for our providers and we said,
        “What parts of the old system did you like? What parts of the new system do you like and areas
        for improvement?” We then got that and did higher level analysis and we’ve been able to use
        that feedback to hopefully build a system that’s a bit more user-friendly and intuitive. We’ve
        done 44 LiveMeets over the last six months whilst DES has been worked into the system and
        that’s covered both some of the high-level analysis of what providers would like to see in the
        system and then detailed analysis kind of, “This is what we’re thinking” and getting validation
        from the end-users of the system that that’s how they would use it in their day-to-day business.
        We conducted 16 face-to-face sessions. Again, about 20 people, a bit more intimate and that was
        going through the presentation showing some designs through our screen shots and they were
        very useful to getting feedback again from providers and end-users. We’re now in the dark
        green stages, with checks been going on the department’s side and also training. So the training
        was released in December and John will be talking about that later. Further information about
        the consultation, including recordings of past LiveMeets are available on the consultation web
        page and we also have the IT consultation inbox where you can send feedback from today, or
        any questions that you have, and then we pass that out and co-ordinate a response. Just a bit
        about today’s sessions; for those people in the room. The bathrooms are outside so there’s a
        temporary pass that you’ll have to get if you’d like to access the females on the other side of the
        lift and the males on this side of the lift. In case of an emergency, DEEWR has its own
        evacuation procedures so please listen to the PA and the DEEWR fire wardens. Today’s
        session, we will be looking at the business and service delivery for National Panel of Assessors,
        the IT system and then the training delivery for National Panel of Assessors. Just a notice for
        participants. We value your input, we value your questions, please feel free to ask questions
        throughout the session. Speak up so those people on the LiveMeet can hear the questions, and
     I’ll get to those participants on the LiveMeet shortly, but we don’t expect you to reveal any
     commercially sensitive information, so please feel comfortable in giving your feedback today.
     Also any information disclosed by the department during the consultation stages, including
     today, whether it be system functionality, prototypes or screen shots, is still draft and subject to
     change. For those people on the LiveMeet today, to ask a question, hit “* 1” and that will be
     queued with Telstra and then, after each session, we’ll ask some questions. For those in the
     room, please put your hand up. To cancel the question on the LiveMeet, you just hit “* 2”. For
     those on the LiveMeet, F5 will get the presentation to full screen; that might be more helpful to
     you. I will now hand you over to the first agenda item for the policy and service delivery
SW   As Anne has mentioned, my name is Sue Williams, I work in the Disability Employment
     Services branch at DEEWR. They would have provided you with an overview of the policy and
     service delivery arrangements for the National Panel of Assessors. I’ll be providing and
     presenting details of the Ongoing Support Assessments then handing over to Trish who will be
     presenting information regarding the Supported Wage Scheme and the Workplace Modification
     scheme. In the context of ongoing support assessments. The review of the Disability
     Employment Services was recently completed and has resulted in a new Disability Employment
     Services model. This model will effectively replace the existing Disability Employment
     Network, or DEN, and Vocational Rehabilitation Service, VRS, from 1 March 2010. The
     introduction of an independent assessment which is ongoing before an assessment is an
     important feature of the Disability Employment Services. Currently for DEN capturing there is
     a tool called the Disability Maintenance Instrument, the DMI, that is used to determine an
     appropriate level of ongoing support for the ESS system. The end-providers observe the
     participants’ ongoing workplace support needs over a period of three months’ rating. It offers
     participants of average ability support via the IT system. The DMI then takes this information
     and assigns each participant to one of four funding levels indicating the level of support required
     for the participants to maintain their employment. The OSA is not a tool and Ongoing Support
     Assessment considers the current and potential barriers and support needs of the participant and
     it determines the level of support required to address this. The completion of an Ongoing
     Support Assessment by an independent assessor will ensure that a participant who is in
     employment receives an appropriate level of support to maintain his employment. Because the
     OSA is here we expect DEEWR, DES and OSA providers will be working together over the
     next few months to fine-tune arrangements. When is an assessment due? Generally speaking,
     there are three main situations: (1) an assessment due date will be set 12 months after a
     participant has been placed in employment or 12 months after the last OSA has been completed
     (2) for Job in Jeopardy participants, those who have entered DES because their employment was
     placed in jeopardy given their medical condition, once they’ve been able to maintain their
     normal hours of employment, the 26 weeks leading to a Job in Jeopardy outcome for the DES
     provider, they will immediately be assessed for ongoing support and response needed or (3) If
     the DES provider determines that the participant’s circumstances have changed while they’re in
     ongoing support and they either require more support to maintain their employment or less, the
     provider can send them for an Ongoing Support Assessment at any time. For transition needs
     participants, we’re going to set the due date on transition for those participants who are currently
     being assessed for the Supported Wage Scheme to the same date that their SWS assessment is
     due just to reduce the need to have two assessments done in one year. The reports are different
     but generally there are overlaps and trends in place. Now, how are OSA work orders going to be
     allocated? When the OSA becomes due, the DES provider will initiate the allocation from an
     OSA work order to an OSA provider for the same Employment Service Area. This will happen
     up to four weeks in advance of the OSA being due. It is the DEEWR IT system that actually
     selects which OSA provider the OSA is allocated to. We suggest that providers check the IT
system at least once each business day to see if there has been any work orders allocated so they
may be rejected or accepted in a timely manner. If the Work Order has been rejected, it will be
allocated for another OSA provider within the ESA. The allocation will include contact
information for the participant, their employer and the DES provider and follows pretext
information that the DES provider considers relevant to include for the OSA provider.
Representatives of the OSA provider grant the authority to accept or reject each work order
when accepted for a contractor to perform the services which fall between the DEEWR and the
OSA provider. Once accepted, the OSA provider must aim to complete the OSA report by the
due date, provided in the work order, however there may be circumstances where this is simply
not possible; in such cases, the contract manager should be consulted. The DEEWR IT system
will take into account a number of factors in determining the OSA allocation. The availability
and capacity recorded by the OSA provider, partial coverage rules, based on postcode, for those
providers who are only service part of an ESA. Now, that is with the understanding that some
postcodes might go outside your area, say, a suburb that we have not actually put the suburb in
the system as a postcode. Also, conflict of interest exclusions; you won’t be able to assess your
own organisation’s participants and other conflict of interest relationships that may be identified
as we go along. All other things being equal, the system, attempts to share the allocations
between all the OSA providers that allocated in an ESA. Having accepted a work order to do an
OSA the OSA provider will determine and assessor within their organisation to complete the
assessment. There are three interview components for an OSA assessment. It is expected that
the vast majority of OSA reports contain all three elements. As the process is new, approval
from DEEWR will be required for any of the assessment elements to be completed but a contact
number will be advised for OSA assessors to call to seek approval. The DES provider, the
participant and employer. So for the DES provider, the ongoing support assessor should contact
the DES provider currently or is expected to arrange an OSA interview. It is expect that the
DES provider will prepare evidence relevant to the participant’s ongoing support needs for
preparation of the interview. Relevant documentation will be provided by the assessor so it may
be included as evidence for the OSA report. They will be asked if DES providers, when
interviews are arranged, to pull together all the documentation file notes and any other evidence
that they have access to in readiness for the interview. One should be given a file and asked to
go through it, ask the DES providers to supply the documentation for assessment. At the
interview with the DES provider, the ongoing support assessor should gain an understanding of
what the DES provider considers to be the current and potential barriers preventing the
participant from working independently. This will include discussion of the nature and amount
of support received and requiring a signature and what strategies have been put in place to
address those barriers now and what the provider feels is needed in the future. We’re also
suggesting that the assessor should co-ordinate with the DES provider for arranging interviews
by the placement participant and should facilitate introductions to the employer if permission is
given by the participant to contact the employer. We just feel that the DES provider should have
a relationship, if they wanted to have a relationship, with the participant and as such it should be
much easier for them to facilitate introduction to the employer and to arrange an interview time.
With the assistance of the employer interview, we would generally like to see that the employer
is contacted but wed do know that the participants have concerns about that and ask for it not to
go ahead, so that we have a fuller picture of what their needs are. So the participant interview. It
is important that both the ongoing support assessor and DES provider work together to ensure
the participant is comfortable with the OSA process. The participant interview should normally
occur in the participant’s workplace, however, if this is not possible, the interview may be in
conjunction with the providers at the DES provider site or in another mutually agreed location.
At the interview with the DES provider, the ongoing support assessor should aim to gain an
understanding of the participant’s current and potential barriers and include discussion of the
nature and amount of support they require. If a participant does not attend the interview, every
effort must be made to contact the participant to arrange another interview. If the participant is
unable to be contacted, the ongoing support assessor should contact the DES provider for
assistance. If that participant will not or could attend an interview then an ongoing support
assessor should use the DEEWR’s IT system to record the participant’s interview details and
request DEEWR to cancel the assessment. Likely scenarios is if they’re incapacitated or have an
emergency or even a mental health issue might arise. For employers, if the participant has given
permission to undertake a workplace component of the OSA, either the DES provider or the
ongoing support assessor should contact the employer to arrange an interview. The employer’s
contact should be the most appropriate person, for example an assistant manager or supervisor,
or the DES provider would make contact with their contact within that company. It is possible
that the participant has not disclosed all aspects of their disability with the employer and this
must be fully understood before any contact is made with the participant. As a workplace
assessor with the employer, the ongoing support assessor could discuss the following: the level
of support of the employer in case it is needed for the participant to maintain their employment,
the nature and amount of support provided by the employer in the job placement since the last
OSA, the nature and amount of support likely to be provided for the future and also the nature
and amount of support provided by the employer in general to all employees of DES within the
Where appropriate, the level of support that may be provided by a DES provider will assist the
participant to become an independent worker, and any other relevant information that the
employer wishes to provide. Now, completing the OSA report. We haven’t fine-tuned this,
we’re going to talk in general terms. As was mentioned earlier, before you <inaudible> and get
really good reports that are of value. So completing an OSA report. Once the OSA is completed,
the ongoing support assessor will compile all relevant information into the OSA report. The
OSA report will be recorded on DEEWR’s IT system, access is largely of “free text” areas
where the OSA assessor can document the evidence, including from the assessment interview.
The report is broken up so there is a section for each interview with the provider, participant and
employer. In each relevant section, the assessor should document evidence of the kind of
potential barriers identified that are preventing the participant from working independently, the
past and current support strategies identified for the participant which act as barriers. Only
support that addresses the actual support needs of participants relevant to their diagnosis should
be in it. The report should only document evidence that has been verified, cited and
substantiated by the assessor but there is no need to keep copies of the evidence. The summary
section of the report should summarise the reasons for recommendations based on the evidence
identified by the assessor. Recommendations. The main outcome of the report is the
recommendations for the ongoing support needs of the participant. If the recommendation is the
continuing support, then the needs of the participant are aligned with one of the DES
programme’s three ongoing support levels. The recommendation will be one of the following.
Exit. If the participant works independently then the recommendation will be to exit the DES
programme and the DES provider will exit then accordingly. If it is for continued support then it
is flexible ongoing support. This level provides a safety net for participants who may require
irregular or less predictable access to ongoing support. It enables DES providers to offer
flexible assistance, including short bursts of intensive support in the workplace and better
support assistance with mental health and other episodic conditions. Flexible ongoing support is
on a need-for-service basis, the DES provider can claim a maximum of six incidences of support
over a six-month period. An incident can cover or simulate a number of smaller contacts that
equate to approximately four hours’ service, for example, regular phone calls or emails or a
single incident of more intensive support, for example, visiting the workplace to adjust a
participant. If the six incidents in six months is reached the DES provider will need to arrange
for an OSA before further ongoing support can be claimed. Moderate ongoing support. This will
be for Employment Support Service participants only, what we have been calling Program B up
until recently. This will be looking at regular and ongoing support, at least an average of
fortnightly so if the support is required. When it’s high ongoing support, which are also only for
program B, we’ll be looking at an average of at least weekly. Note that with support needs for a
participant, as opposed to nature, such that a higher level of support may be required in the
future, but if support needs are needs are normally currently low or nil, flexible ongoing support
would be an appropriate recommendation rather than high ongoing support. If support needs
increase then a provider can initiate a change of circumstances for ongoing support assessment
to enable an increased level of support if that occurs. The provider can then decrease the level of
support once the participant support requirements have reduced again. OSA disputes. Where a
participant or DES provider considers that the content or recommendation of an OSA report are
inappropriate, the matter should be raised with the ongoing support assessor as soon as possible.
Details of reasons for review of the OSA’s report should be provided to the ongoing support
assessor within 28 days of the report. Initially the participant or DES provider should contact
the ongoing support assessor and explain their views, presenting the reasons and evidence for
questioning the report. The ongoing support assessor should consider the information provided
by the participant or provider and what amendments to the OSA report may be required. If the
ongoing support assessor considers that changes to the ongoing support assessment report are
required the ongoing support assessor should contact the DEEWR contracts manager to request
that the OSA report can be under review. Then the recommendation summary section of the
OSA report can be updated and should include why the review was requested and the review
outcomes, including a summary of the changes required to the report as a result of the meeting.
The ongoing support assessor should make any other necessary amendments to the OSA report
including any change to the recommendation appropriate to recent report advice. Where the
dispute outcome is not accepted by the DES provider and there is further evidence available the
issue can be referred to the contracts manager to review and determine an outcome. DEEWR
will monitor OSA disputes and their outcomes very closely, particularly as business process
improve. So we’d like to see a discussion into the incident and see if we can have it resolved at
that level before going any further. Preparation for day one. Here in the IT section, you’ll be
able to see the screen. In addition to reviewing the documentation provided that the learning
centre is providing for them, OSA providers will need to identify their availability and capacity
for their OSA allocation. Initially all OSA providers will be recording to DEEWR’S IT system
and ready and available to be allocated. OSA puts no limit on capacity. OSA providers that do
not have the capacity to accept OSA work orders on day one in any of the areas they offer
services, will need to ensure that they access the DEEWR employment service system and
update this availability for every ESA performance. This will need to be done as soon as
possible on the morning of 1 March 2010 to avoid being allocated unwanted work. OSA
providers who will be unable to do this on day one should contact their contract managers so the
present system can be updated on their behalf. The OSA provider should then update the system
when access is finishing and when available as your capacity changes. So availability is whether
you’re available at all, so you can say yes or no to that. Once you’ve said yes to that, you can set
the number for capacity to indicate how many work orders that you can take on at a time.
Where an OSA provider is delivering partial coverage, they will only be allocated OSA work
orders for participants who are in corresponding postcodes. This is far from an exact science
and sometimes results in inappropriate allocation. To minimise this please contact your contract
manager to review these postcodes and ensure they are the best possible match for you. We’ll
just send out a listing with work around partial matched postcodes for ESAs based on market
shares and allocations in the documentation. We think we’ve got it right but it has been sent out
     to the account managers to have a look at it and there should be contact with them shortly to
     ensure that we have got it right. And now I will hand you over to Trish.
PJ   Hello. My name is Trish James , I’m from the National Office in the Department as well and I
     actually manage Employer Incentives The Supported Wage System is not new, it commenced
     in 1994 to create opportunities, particularly to help people with a disability to gain employment
     inside the labour market. It’s developed over many years of conversation with employer and
     industry bodies, unions, disability peak bodies, State and Commonwealth Government. It is only
     for people who cannot work at full productive capacity compared to their co-workers or
     compared to a minimum industry standard. The Supported Wage System is Australia’s main
     system of productivity-based wages for people with disability. This provides the industrial
     relations framework that enables employers to claim productivity-based wages to eligible people
     with disability. Most modern awards now contain a SWS schedule and there are other industrial
     relations instruments containing the SWS decision as well, including the special [PRIDS]
     Over recent years the Supported Wage System has assisted about 5,000 people annually to gain
     and retain employment. Most of these people are registered with a Disability Employment
     Service Provider, however, some do not have a service provider. SWS assessments. The
     purpose of SWS assessments is to do an independent assessment of the Supported Wage System
     participant’s productive work capacity relative to the minimum acceptable standard for that
     workplace and for that job. The SWS assessor will use the methods of observation of the
     Supported Wage System participant and of a suitable co-worker to derive a productivity grade.
     The productivity grade is used to calculate the wage payable. There are two types of Supported
     Wage System assessment: an initial assessment is required after an applicant has submitted a
     Supported Wage System application form on the JobAccess website. It is usually asked that the
     Supported Wage System participant has recently commenced working in that job and has usually
     not been in that job for more than 12 weeks and a review assessment is required and normally by
     the anniversary of the date the SWS wage assessment agreement was last signed. A review
     assessment may also be required if there is specific change in the person’s productivity or job
     task. The department’s Supported Wage Management unit in each case will allocate Supported
     Wage System assessments. They usually allocate them between six and 10 weeks in advance of
     the date the assessment must be conducted. Supported Wage System providers must accept or
     not accept the work order online on the JobAccess IT system. The existing paper-based orders
     for service will be replaced by this online method from 1 March. The Supported Wage System
     assessment reports must be submitted online on JobAccess within seven business days of the due
     date of the assessment. After the provider has accepted the online work order and allocated it to
     an approved SWS assessor, the assessor must prepare for the assessment. This involves
     checking all the information on JobAccess about the assessment to familiarise yourself with the
     relevant assessment details particularly the work classification, nominated industrial instrument,
     specified duties and tasks and the participant’s productivity rating, where available. If it is an
     initial assessment, you can access details about the job, employee, employer and applicant from
     the applications screen. If it is a review assessment you will also be able to access the details
     about previous SWS assessments completed for that employee. So the assessor contacts the
     employer, and the DES provider where there is one, to agree on a time to conduct an assessment
     at the workplace, to explain the SWS assessment process, to obtain and verify background
     information about the duties and tasks, work environment, hours worked, the job description and
     any other supporting job medication to determine what the productivity performance standard is
     going to be; for example, which co-worker is going to be used as a measure to compare
     performance, concern if there are any special OHS and building access requirements, concern
     who will be present during the SWS assessment and ask the employer if there will be a union
     representative. Ideally, this should be done as a meeting with all parties prior to the assessment.
After the parties to the assessment have agreed to the assessment process the SWS productivity
assessment occurs at the person’s workplace. The SWS assessment is based on observation and
timing of the participant as they are doing the agreed duties in a comparison of this performance
against the minimum-established standard which will usually be established by the observation
and timing of suitable co-worker performing the same duties. This is the methodology
underpinning the Supported Wage System Assessment Tool which is available to each assessor
online on JobAccess when they access a work order. It is where the assessors will input the
benchmark standards and produce tasks and timings of the Supported Wage System participant.
Assessors are required to describe each duty and task in the SWS assessment report. The
description must be sufficiently detailed so that another assessor can understand what is assessed
when they do a review assessment in the future. Assessors are required to allocate a time that
the participant spends on each duty, usually per week, but it can be per day. The time weighting
is important in the overall productivity calculation. The assessor then observes and times the
SWS participant as they perform each task to record the timings which are then entered in the
assessment tool on the JobAccess system. The Supported Wage Assessment Tool will then
calculate the overall productivity rate. The final productivity rating must be rounded up or down
to the nearest 10%. This is a requirement of the Supported Wage System industrial relations
provisions. Usually the rounding will be a simple process, for example, if the assessor’s
productivity rating is between 65% and 69% it will be rounded to 70% or, if it is between 61%
and 64%, it will be rounded to 60%. However, the assessor may use their discretion in the
rounding. For example, when the participant requires, additional supervision and support from
the employer to maintain their workplace, it may be rounded down. Similarly, if the SWS
participant is highly reliable and works at a consistently steady rate, it may be agreed to round
up. Rounding of the productivity rate can only then begin at the 10 percentile band. In this
example, the final productivity rate can be no more than 70% and no less than 60%. The
assessor then advises the employer and employee, and any union representative or employee
nominee present at the assessment, of the final productivity assessment results. Next, the
employer, if the agreed final Supported Wage System productivity rate calculates the
productivity wage on the hard copy of the Supported Wage System wage assessment agreement.
The assessor takes a pre-populated wage agreement form to the assessment. The assessor should
check the accuracy of the wage agreement at the assessment and should get the employer to
agree to and sign the agreement on the day of the assessment. The assessor should check the
lodgement requirements in the SWS wage assessment agreement and offer to lodge the
agreement with the relevant industrial relations authority on behalf of the employer. In most
cases, this will be Fair Work Australia, however, in Western Australia there will still be state-
based awards with different lodgement requirements. There are still some transitional
arrangements for the new industrial relations system as well. The assessor then provides a copy
of the completed final SWS wage assessment agreement to the parties to the assessment.
Assessors must submit on the JobAccess IT system their Supported Wage System assessment
report, including the date that wage assessment agreement was signed. This data is used for the
basis of determining the next SWS review assessment which is due in 12 months time. The
assessment report must be submitted within seven business days of the date of the assessment.
The assessment fee can then be claimed through DEEWR’s ESS IT system. The assessment fee
information is outlined in your deed of standing offer. The Supported Wage System unit checks
your Supported Wage System reports, so you can actually claim the Supported Wage System
fee. The system reports that are available, if at any time you need to work a Supported Wage
System assessment which is disputed, you dispute the result, they should contact the
department’s Supported Wage Management unit which will provide them with the necessary
information to assist a request to review the assessment. Often there’s a lot of processes that you
go through before you actually get to lodge a review form. Supported Wage Management units
      are available to assist you, they can be contacted on 1 800 065 123. Fair Work Australia should
      be your key source of industrial relations information. You can search their database for awards
      on their website, and their info line on 13 13 94. Their website is also a good
      source of information about the industrial instruments that contain SWS provisions. Their
      advanced search mechanism on their website is good. There is also a Supported Wage System
      handbook on the JobAccess public website under the A-Z listing. The one that is currently on
      there is out of date; it does not have the most recent Fair Work Australia industrial relations
      information in it. That information will be updated very soon and available on the JobAccess
      website. That concludes my Supported Wage System policy information and I’ll just briefly
      turn to the workplace modifications assessment. Today’s session was not really meant to go
      through the workplace modifications assessment, it was mostly for the purposes of OSA and
      Supported Wage System. But I’ll just briefly explain what the process is for workplace
      modifications assessments. Workplace modifications assessments are managed by the
      JobAccess service provider. The JobAccess service provider will allocate workplace
      modifications assessments to NPA providers together with the details of the required assessment,
      contact details of the applicant and other parties that are relevant and a pro forma assessment
      report timeframe. Assessors email their completed reports to the JobAccess service provider
      together with their tax invoice for the workplace modifications assessment fee. The JobAccess
      service provider will pay the NPA provider as well. Further details are available about
      workplace modifications assessments in the Employment Assistance Fund guideline which will
      shortly be available on the JobAccess public website. The JobAccess website and the JobAccess
      providers on telephone number 1 800 464 800 are the main sources of information and
      assistance about workplace modifications assessments. So shortly, if you do do workplace
      modifications assessments, you should receive some information from the JobAccess service
      provider about the assessments and you should be able to access the Employment Assistance
      Fund guidelines on the JobAccess website as well. So that concludes my part of the presentation
      and I believe that we’re going to take some questions.
AR    Are there any questions in the room? Are there any questions on LiveMeet? I think I heard
      two? Hello.
TEL   There are no questions from the parties on the phone line. We now have one from Deborah
      Salamingo from Rehab Management. Go ahead, please Deborah.
M     Hi. It’s actually Marcella, but I’m here with Deb. Can you just go through the allocation of the
      referral of work orders to OSA assessors? It was just a bit hard to hear you before.
PJ    I didn’t quite hear all your question. Can you repeat it, please?
AR    Would you like me to repeat it, I heard it?
M     Yes.
AR    Deborah asked could we go through the information about how the OSA and the Supported
      Wage System assessments are going to be allocated again.
PJ    So I’ll just begin with the two wage systems, the assessment allocation methods. The
      department’s Supported Wage System units in each state will manually allocate Supported Wage
      System assessments to providers. The providers then will allocate them to a suitable assessor
      who’s available to deliver so the Supported Wage System provider must accept or not accept
      them within one business day of receiving the allocation. The allocation comes through on your
      JobAccess IT system so you must check that at least once every day and I’d be checking it
      twice; at least initially anyway until you get used to the way how they’ve been allocated. So you
      want to save as you get them and then allocate them asap to a suitable assessor and then the
      assessor could basically access the information about the assessment on the JobAccess system.
      So the Supported Wage Management unit, they try to allocate equitably between providers but
      will choose providers that are available or that are contractors to deliver services within that
      ESA or that region as part of an ESA.
M          Can I ask a question just in relation to that? If they allocate equitably, what happens if it is a
           review, will it go back to the first provider?
PJ         The question was what happens with an allocation with a SWS review if we try to allocate them
           equitably, do we just allocate it to the next person that’s going to come up or do we allocate it to
           the same provider that did the last assessment? I think that we attempt to allocate it to the SWS
           provider that did the last assessment unless there is some reason why – we try to allocate it to
           the provider that did the last assessment except if there’s information available like the last
           assessment was in issue because the participant had an issue with that assessor or he had a
           behavioural thing or other reason but as a general rule we do try to allocate it to the same person
           – sorry, not the same person, the same provider. So the OSA
SW         Ongoing support, this to be allocated four weeks out from the due date, the DES provider or the
           interested systems and allocations, the system will generally allocate randomly taking into
           account any conflict of interests and impartial coverage of the ESA. It will also try to take into
           account if a SWS assessment is already being undertaken for that participant and that client, if
           there’s a SWS assessment due or already allocated, it will allocate to the same provider that’s
           currently doing the SWS. The OSA provider has one business day to accept or reject the
           allocation, what they accepted, if there’s a work order for them to undertake the assessment. If
           it’s rejected, it just goes back into the system and it will be reallocated, based on the reallocation
           done in the system.
SP         Is that also done through the system?
SW         It will be done through the system.
SP         Will it be only every four weeks?
SW         No, every day. The DES provider will have a notification sent to them four weeks out from the
           due date to say, “You need to allocate this person for us” or, “You need to consider whether this
           person still requires ongoing support”. If they still require ongoing support they need to be
           assessed so they’ll allocate it.
SP         Thank you.
Provider   Hi. Are we talking about the ESS system that we’re going to have to log into and not the
           JobAccess intranet?
SW         That’s right. OSA is within the ESS.
Provider   ESS. So the new providers then will be supplied with the software for that?
SW         Yes.
Provider   To date we haven’t received them. We’ve received security tokens for that.
SW         I think, access to ESS, will you be discussing that Jacqui?
JM         I presume that you have all your information on how to get access.
Provider   We would have security tokens but the software for ESS –
AR         There should be a download so where the information about that download is, I think there
           might be information up on the Learning Centre about day one. But your IT area should get like
           a little kind of MSI, I think they call it but it will be put onto your computer by your IT
           department and then that should just be there to open on day one. Is that – I can send all the
           information out to you.
Provider   If you can follow it up afterwards, that would be perfect.
AR         Yes.
Provider   So when you go into ESS, so OSA will have its own discrete – you know, you get a list?
JM         Jacqui will fix it up in ESS and the screen shots and how it will look from –
Provider   If for some obscure reason someone is not able to access the system within one working day, is
           does the system intuitively think, “Well, you have to responded and I will reallocate”.
SW         It’s something that we’ll be monitoring.
Provider   Is the postcode mapping based on the participant’s home address?
SW        Home address. So we do realise that maybe in, especially in remote areas, we might have
          difficulty there so some discussion of that will take place as it comes up.
Provider With regards to the OSA, is there an accepted referral that the DEEWR has with regards to
          flexible, moderate and high assigning of clients to actually be referred at the end? Like, for
          instance, the funding that’s DES receives now, are you expecting it to stay similar with regards
          to the OSA so is there a percentage that DEEWR expects that the end result of an OSA will flow
          to high, moderate or flexible? I guess just there’s a concern – well, one is that current DES
          providers may want to have it done by assessors that choose higher support, so do you have an
          expectation of what method of referral –
SW        Well, DES providers won’t be able to pick their assessors for ongoing support assessments in
          allocating tothe Ongoing Support Assessment providers and I don’t have any preconceived
          ideas. Just the fact that we’re assessing people’s needs on a regular basis, a minimum of once a
          year, we think that will be – we’ll be able to justify the ongoing costs because we are addressing
          – assessing needs, giving people the appropriate level of support that they need and those people
          hopefully who progress to being independent workers will be exited. We believe there’ll be a
          high proportion to start with of people, as they become more independent, maybe moving to
          flexible so they can retain that space. And then if their condition flares up or they have a change
          in the workplace that they – things that require that extra support, so they still have that
          connection. But hopefully, people will become independent.
Provider Given that the OSA contracts have been given out can we have some expected numbers?
SW        We’ve started looking at numbers. Our initial numbers we’re looking at, I think, about 370 of
          nation-wide the first week. Because DES wants to do that, albeit our first week, we will be
          making – we have the ability to look into the system and actually go in and manually adjust due
          dates and we’re looking at the best way to adjust it so people don’t start day one and have OSAs
          allocated to them that are due that day. So we will be adjusting due dates to take into account
          that providers have to have four weeks.
Provider <inaudible>*59 mins*
SW        As far as I’m aware, we’ve only got access to day one on 1 March but we have input.
Provider <inaudible> will that be in the system and available on 1 March or <inaudible>
SW        Well, the OSA providers do actually see allocated work orders. DES providers will have to go
          in and actually put it into the allocation – yes. It depends on how the DES providers are and
          how much they allocate so hopefully they’re not there at 8 o'clock in the morning.
Provider <inaudible>
Provider <inaudible>
Provider Is there any planned training for new SWS assessors?
PJ        The training for SWS assessors is just the Learning Centre module and there’s a book coming
          up, I think it’s due to be released on 15 February.
JB        In fact, I’ll be running the complete training package
Provider Currently we will get an email for Supported Wage, it’s great that the paper is not happening, I
          love that, but is the email still going to come through or really it will
PJ        We weren’t planning on doing email in the future we thought that people should be on the IT
          system on a daily basis to be put up.
Provider And with regards to, I guess, reporting of some job accesses, it’s really immaterial to see the
          report whereas on SmartClient you’ve got great reporting ability. Is there any view to look at
          how we report and can draw data from JobAccess?
PJ        We’ll do some work on that about how we can – we can have a think about how we can figure
          out how to get some information from users about the priority needs are. At the moment there’s
          no plans to adjust the IT system or the wage system, we’ll try other means to get reports out.
AR        No more questions? I might pass you on to Jacqui now to look at the IT systems.
JM       Hi, my name’s Jacqui Moulang and I’m from Employment Systems. I’ve been working
on developing the system so I’ll be going through that. I’ll be telling you what we’ve been up to
and what we’ve got fixed up for you in the future. Just a bit of an overview of what I’m going to
be talking about. A quick look at the Employment Services System. That talks about Ongoing
Support Assessment and system functions and then about Supported Wage and <inaudible>.
Most of you have probably picked up that there are two different systems the OSA Employment
Services System supported by the DES system. Employment Services System, the system is just
to log in and out. Working with the Employment Services System we’ve brought all the
different programmes into one so instead of going in and then choosing that you want to do SWS
or DES is now accessible via ESS, the Ongoing Support Assessment process is in there and there
are some new process. The OSA process, just to quickly go over it again. The provider is
notified on their notice board. They allocate it and refer it to the NPA. The NPA does the
assessment and prepares the report and then that goes back to the DES provider who manages
the ongoing support and assessment levels that have been entered into the assessment. and then
in a year’s time it goes around again. The DES provider system functions. I’ll just give you a
bit of background because I can see that people are interested in the whole allocation side of
things so I’ll explain what they do and we can look at the trends they use. They get notified
when an assessment is due and they allocate it and then once the assessment’s completed, they
are notified that it’s been completed and they get the recommendations placed up on their
noticeboard pretty well as soon as the assessment is completed in the system. They can see the
completed assessments in a printed form and they can print them out and there’s the history of all
the assessments also that they can access and they can look through reports going back. This is
the OSA allocation between the DES providers. Up the top, we’ve got the list of people who
they need to allocate assessments for, down the bottom is a history of all the assessments that are
out there at the moment being done or have been completed in the last 28 days. When they want
to allocate assessments, they select one from the top, press the allocate button and the system
actually works out who it goes to. They get this detail at the top which guy it’s been allocated to
and a contact name and number and any additional information so that’s a contact name in that
ESA for that NPA site. They also fill in the employer details and job details and this comes
across to form part of the assessment. They put in their own contact details and they can put in
any additional comments that they feel is necessary information Once they’ve done that, they
click submit and the assessment get allocated. One of the things that Sue was talking about with
the OSA capacity and availability. That <inaudible> you’ve got your allocations <inaudible>
you can control the flow of the assessments by updating them and you can also enter and update
those contact details that you saw on the previous screen. This is the screen that you do all this
on. The outlet details screen gives you a bit of an idea of what your convention structure is
going to look like if you’re an assessor and this provides a contract section up there. The other
details screen is the screen that’s here at the moment, there is a regions tab, and that lists all the
ESAs that you’ve got business in you can select each one individually and update the availability
with a yes or no, and if not available you can say no and you won’t get any allocations. You can
also update capacity but, as I say, every ESA is separate so you’ve got to select each one from
down the bottom to do it. This screen is actually out there at the moment. I don’t have access to
it but it was due for release in December but you can see it has the contact details, that will be
coming in March. The capacity is what you set your capacity to and the current is an account of
how many assessments you’ve actually happening at the moment plus the current max capacity.
You won’t get any more until the current ones are complete. OSA assessment system functions.
So we’ll have a look at the system you will get assessor. If you search the list of assessments
assigned to your organisation, I suggest that you do this daily, you can accept or reject the
assigned assessment. Assign them to an individual assessor. Create and update the queue and
save and delete assessments so that’s all the parts of the report the way it’s going to be set up.
     This is the menu you’ll see <inaudible> so there’s a planned assessment section, search the
     details of the reports through the history. And that SWS, there’s a link that will take you into the
     JobAccess website. There’s a payments section there where you can claim payment and
     Providers and Contracts where you put your outlets and Tools. This is the assessment search
     screen. This is where you’ll manage your caseload of assessments. When an assessment is
     assigned to you or allocated to you by the DES provider it will appear on this screen with a status
     of unassigned there at the top and you can select them and have a look at the information so you
     can do the assessment. Other things up here like error, completed assessments, assessments that
     you’re working on and the completed, and any ones that you reject or, cancelled, but it will not
     be likely that you will have any, they will stay on here for 28 days so that you can have a better
     <inaudible>. Other things that the system has for you is that if there is say an SWS assessment
     for this job seeker then it will, the job seeker ID, will appear, in that Concurrent SWS ID
     column, that is something that might be assigned to you or it might be actually underway, either
     active or recently completed. The system is organised by ESA, it can be sorted up or down so
     you can click on any of those folders <inaudible> and also it can be grouped so you drag your
     heading up and group and you can do as many as you like so you can do sub group. There’s also
     a right click that will allow you to copy, copy cells. .
Provider Are the drop down standard drop downs free text?
JM         The reason is for reasons that OSA have preferred.
Provider But are there like standard ones you can choose or is there free text?
JM         They’re the ones that remember Sue was talking about a different reason for an OSA.
Provider No, I was just asking whether that’s a pretext thing or is it a selected. Like, there seems to be a
           consistency of –

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