One of the most incredible shifts in life will come from how you invest your waking hours and for many in the disability services industry, that investment returns a level of peace, security and fulfilment that few can replace.
But for a select few who were uninformed and inexperienced at the time of entering said industry, it has been the opposite experience.
The reason? They simply didn’t know what to look for.
At Platinum Healthcare Group, we’ve compiled what we hope will be a helpful list which you can work with, so you don’t have the same experience and can forge a career and life that helps you meet your personal goals.
When applying for work with a disability provider, confirm with them what duties the role entails. Will you be expected to drive a van or car, or provide personal care?
Don’t be afraid to ask for clarification on information provided, as this will help eliminate uncertainty and misunderstandings about what is expected. This will help you decide if this is what you are looking for in a role.
Competition in this market is tough and some companies will not be forthcoming about the pay rate. Ensure you find out what the pay is and shop around the different companies to find a rate that you are happy with.
Different qualifications attract different pay rates – find out what they are and whether you have the qualifications required for the role, at the rate that will provide for your needs.
What additional benefits does the company offer and how do they support their employees. For example, do they provide a uniform, or are you expected to buy your own? Is there a dress standard that you will be expected to adhere to? Is a vehicle supplied, if not, will they pay you a rate per mile to use your own car?
Ask them what training opportunities are available and if there are career development options and prospects for promotion.
Look for a company who will provide flexible working hours and will tailor the working hours to fit the circumstances of their workers. For example, will they allow you to work school hours, if you have school age children? Or can you work evenings?
If support workers feel the company will listen to their employees and be flexible with work hours, they will more likely keep a stable, happy workforce, which, in the long run, will benefit workers and company alike. Employees will be more likely to go the extra mile and work as a team, if they feel management is on their side. A progressive, inclusive company is one you would want to work for.
Work culture should support the support workers and their needs, to create a strong and supportive work environment. Social connection is important with other workers – staff need to feel they are not just another number, but that they are valued.
Does the company embrace all cultures, and do they allow their employees to celebrate special days that are important to them?
Do they provide team building activities and the opportunities to have staff gatherings to strengthen relationships? Does the company provide opportunities for all staff to attend special events in their own area, for example, staff picnics North and South of the River?
At the end of the day the workers are the company’s greatest asset and should be recognised as such.
Be sure to check out the reviews of the company on Google, as happy staff will post good things about the company online, and adversely, unhappy staff will also make their feelings known.
When you call the office to inquire about a role, or pay rate etc., do you get a response when expected? If they don’t respond in a timely manner to your query, how are they going to support, or respond to you in the future, as an employee.
Is the office easy to find and are they readily accessible? Do they make you feel welcome? Are they professional? Do you feel comfortable with them?
If you know someone who is working for a disability provider, talk to them about their experience. Are they happy? Are there things they would like improved? People are generally happy to talk or share experiences they or their friends have had.
In conclusion, before you join any company, ascertain what the role entails and what the pay rates are? Do you see yourself staying with that employer for the rest of your working life? Have a plan, short term, medium term, and long term and ask yourself if this employer will help you achieve your career goals.
Look at the reviews of the company before making any decisions. Look at what support is offered and
determine from this how valued you will be as an employee. You don’t want to go to work feeling unhappy and undervalued and then find yourself looking for work elsewhere, as this is a waste of your time. You want to work for a company where you feel at home.
If you’re looking for an organisation which values its employees and is actively committed to redefining healthcare, take a look at our job vacancies or give Platinum Healthcare Group a call today on (08) 9470 4075 to learn more about how we are putting the heart back into healthcare!