Constant pressure has been applied to human services providers – especially those in government and not for-profit organisations – since the early nineties. In terms of finding efficiencies, the pressure to reduce cost and improve performance initially favoured those with poor governance and process, who could apply relatively straightforward means to reduce resource inputs. More than two decades on, sustained input reductions and expectations to increase the quality of service and outcomes – not only from funders but from the service recipients themselves – have forced an examination of the fundamental business models. Measuring process effectiveness, in-depth quality management programmes and a strong focus on monitoring and responding to customer feedback are now basics. The National Disability Insurance Scheme and the regulatory changes driven by the Australian Charities and Not for-profits Commission are two outstanding examples of the depth of change in this Sector’s environment.
Thornton Mack supports the human services sector to reform and realign its governance and service delivery systems to proactively drive enhanced efficiency, and simultaneously deliver better ways of engaging with and supporting clients.
Government organisations and not for-profits have used our services to:
- Develop implementation plans for introducing major funding changes
- Set up advisory boards to support strategic development of services
- Implement new data collection systems on a state-wide basis, to support epidemiological research
- Restructure an entire business
- Facilitate board development
- Design and implement a work planning system to ensure that objectives are prioritised and that achievement is tracked and measured
- Review the effectiveness of a communication function
- Develop a help desk to support state-wide programme delivery
- Implement collaborative strategic planning across the business
- Develop operating models for both support and service delivery functions
- Coach managers to improve organisation effectiveness
- Facilitate team development and culture change
Developing a training strategy and plan
A new, standardised approach for allocating and managing a performance based funding arrangement across a government owned health services network was planned to enhance process efficiency and drive quality outcomes. To achieve a successful transition, all impacted employees would need to understand the rationale for, and adopt, new business processes, procedures, system and reporting requirements.
A training strategy and plan was developed to support the transition. Insight was gained through analysis of current plans and consultation with key stakeholders and business managers with responsibility for delivery of project outcomes. Audience groups were identified and roles and responsibilities defined. Based on an understanding of the changes and impact on employees, a variety of learning solutions and support materials were developed to provide a targeted response to meet individual learning needs. Practical methods of training and re-usable materials were designed in consideration of logistical constraints and staff availability.
An overall framework for learning, incorporating a blended learning approach, was adopted by the client and the training schedule, which defined the audiences, facilitators, duration, location and dates for each learning solution was successfully implemented.