New employment services announced

Joint Media Release
  • Leader of the Government in the Senate
  • Minister for Employment
  • Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for the Public Service
  • Senator for Tasmania
  • Assistant Minister for Employment

The Australian Government today announced the organisations selected to be part of its new employment services system, to be known as jobactive.

From 1 July 2015, there will be 66 organisations delivering one or more jobactive services to job seekers and employers across Australia.

Minister for Employment Senator Eric Abetz said the Government is investing $5 billion over three years to replace Labor’s failed Job Services Australia system and improve the quality of services delivered.

“The Coalition Government introduced the contracted model of employment services in 1998, as it provides better value for taxpayers’ money and ensures job seekers have access to the services they need right around the country,” Senator Abetz said.

“Unfortunately, under Labor the employment services system was changed to reward process over results, training for training’s sake and had become mired in red tape.

“This has let down job seekers and employers, and reduced public confidence in employment services.

“Last year the Government reduced the red-tape burden and commenced a formal tender process to strengthen and reinvigorate employment services after years of Labor’s neglect.

“From 1 July 2015, the Coalition’s new jobactive system will provide clearer incentives to ensure employment service providers are focused on better preparing job seekers to meet the needs of local employers and helping people to find and keep a job.”

The new model will provide outcome payments at four, 12 and 26 weeks to ensure job seekers are supported to take up all work opportunities, including seasonal work.

“Real jobs – albeit of a short duration – provide a break from welfare, as well as assist job seekers into more permanent positions,” Senator Abetz said.

“Data tells us quite clearly that those that have undertaken a few short-term employment opportunities are substantially more likely to gain permanent positions.

“The new model includes wage subsidies to support the employment of young job seekers, Indigenous job seekers, the long-term unemployed, the Restart subsidy for older workers, as well as the Government’s Relocation Assistance, which is helping people move to take up a job.

“Work for the Dole will be rolled out nationally to help job seekers to learn new skills and remain socially active and engaged while looking for work.

“Work for the Dole allows job seekers to show that they are keen and willing to work while also giving something back to the community that is supporting them.

“The new jobactive system will ensure that job seekers receive the practical help they need to move from welfare to work, and that employers are being sent candidates that have the skills and attitudes that meet their business needs.

“Minister Hartsuyker is to be commended for personally undertaking this substantial reform.”

Assistant Minister for Employment Luke Hartsuyker said there had been strong interest in the Government’s new employment services model and 184 organisations had submitted a tender.

The competitive tender process was conducted by the Department of Employment in accordance with the Government’s procurement rules and signed off by an external probity adviser.

“The 66 organisations that have been offered contracts were selected on the basis of their capacity to deliver services that will meet the needs of local job seekers and employers, their past performance in service delivery, the strength of their management teams and their governance structures,” Mr Hartsuyker said.

“The Government was conscious of the need to move the employment services sector to a more competitive and sustainable basis, while at the same time ensuring an appropriate mix of organisations on the ground.

“An important change is that we are offering five-year contracts instead the current three years, which will give more certainty for all concerned.

“I am delighted to see that there will be a strong mix of for-profit and not-for-profit organisations delivering services to job seekers and employers.

“New partnerships and sub-contracting arrangements have been formed, allowing organisations to pool resources and expertise to best meet the needs of local job seekers and employers.

“Organisations have also proposed a number of innovations to assist job seekers and employers, such as the greater use of technology, extended opening hours, dedicated points of contact for employers, and specialist staff to meet the needs of Indigenous job seekers, youth and people with a disability.

“I congratulate those organisations that have demonstrated they have the skills, capacity and determination to achieve results in the new jobactive system.”

The Department of Employment today offered contracts to 66 organisations to deliver one or more jobactive services in 51 new Employment Regions:

  • 44 organisations have been offered contracts to deliver employment services to help people find and keep a job;

  • 19 organisations have been offered contracts to deliver Work for the Dole Coordinator services to identify activities and places in local communities;

  • 21 organisations have been offered contracts to deliver the New Enterprise Incentive Scheme to help job seekers start their own business; and

  • five organisations have been offered contracts to deliver the Harvest Labour Services and one organisation the National Harvest Labour Information Service to connect job seekers to harvest work opportunities.

A full list of the organisations selected to deliver jobactive services is available at the Employment Services procurement website www.employment.gov.au/employment-services-procurement-information

In coming months, job seekers will receive advice on which organisation will assist them with their job search after 1 July 2015.

In the meantime, job seekers should continue to work with their existing Job Services Australia provider.

Job Services Australia staff who may be affected by the change are able to register their details on the Employment Services Industry Jobs Board at www.jobsearch.gov.au/esijobs/

Likewise, successful organisations that have a need for staff may record details of job opportunities on the site.

Further information on jobactive is available at the Employment Services website employment.gov.au/jobactive, via the Department of Employment’s employment services purchasing hotline espurchasing@employment.gov.au or on 1300 733 514.

For more information

Media line: (02) 6240 8667, media@employment.gov.au