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April - June 2016

The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) rollout continues to create job opportunities in management, particularly within small to medium sized organisations that are still restructuring. Such employers typically look for professionals with experience driving fee-paying services in the private or NPF healthcare sector, as well as strong organisational change management skills. In addition, in South Australia there will be an increased need for registered medical professionals to deliver care plans as well as administrative staff to review compliance as we move toward the end of financial year.

Experienced Case Managers who are degree qualified are in very high demand in the areas of child protection, children and families and out of home care.

Newly qualified Social Workers and Psychologists find it increasing difficult to secure their first role as services within the Not-for-Profit (NFP) sector are being targeted on outcome deliverables to ensure funding renewal. This has created leaner teams to make the most of the funding and experience.

Demand in the aged care sector shows no signs of slowing, both at the entry level end roles and PCA’s, as well as increasingly for senior management. Aged care providers are vying for business minded Nurse Managers who can maximise ACFI and finances as well as offer strong people management and leadership. Candidates with a nursing background are preferred, although larger providers are open to senior managers from hospitality and related fields for larger multi-functional sites.

Demand for allied health professional is still very high, particularly for Physiotherapists in both private practice and aged care. Niche areas such as podiatry have also seen increased demand in the last 12 months.

There has also been increased demand for Mental Health Practitioners in both the private and NFP sectors.

Funding model changes in the NFP sector has seen movement from permanent to more fixed term contract roles. Apart from this, the preference from most employers is to recruit on a permanent basis.

In geographic trends, skill shortages continue for degree qualified Psychologists, Social Workers, and Physiotherapists in Darwin and remote locations. Salaries are assumed to be higher in the Northern Territory but this is not the case, dissuading candidates from moving to the Top End.

South Australia has experienced a significant shake up within mental health and aged care services as the State Government redefines its community service offering. NFP organisations that have Tier 1 status for service provision to government will continue to increase headcount for services delivered in the areas of mental health, aged care and other disability support services. Registered Nurses, Clinical Nurses and holders of DCSI security clearances will continue to be in demand.

Child protection is a significant focus within South Australia, and a report from The Royal Commission into Child Abuse will be handed down. Qualified Social Workers, particularly in regional areas, will continue to be in high demand. 

Skills in demand 

Mental Health Practitioners are in increasing demand due to funding of community mental health programs.

Aboriginal identified healthcare workers are also in solid demand for their expertise and to increase the diversity of teams.

Allied health practitioners with interdisciplinary experience are needed as we move towards the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) roll out and greater collaboration within allied health streams.

Meanwhile, degree-qualified Social Workers with the right qualification and extensive demonstrated relevant work experience are in short supply in many locations.

Also in short supply are qualified Psychologists with extensive work experience as well as Senior Managers degree qualified in social work or psychology with considerable managerial experience.

In the Northern Territory General Practitioners are always needed and there is also a shortage of qualified Physiotherapists looking for long-term work in Darwin.

Experienced Endorsed Enrolled Nurses (EEN) are in demand in many locations, while in South Australia Registered Nurses, Clinical Nurses and holders of DCSI security clearances are needed.

Facility Managers
for aged care facilities in rural areas are also needed but are in short supply.

Candidate trends 

There is still a high volume of graduates looking for work in the Northern Territory but the demand is for highly skilled healthcare professionals who have extensive demonstrated work experience within their field of expertise.

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