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Top 10 tips to hire the best Disability Support Workers in Australia

Hiring amazing disability support workers is crucial to ensure quality care and support for individuals with disabilities. If you hire carers that are reliable, responsible and have a great work ethic, you will save yourself some major headaches when it comes to having carers turn up to work and be conscientious on the job.

Here are ten tips to help you find and hire the best disability support workers:

  1. Clearly define your requirements

    Before beginning the hiring process, create a detailed job description outlining the specific qualifications, skills, and experience you're seeking in a disability support worker. Type it out and consider it your vision board for who you want on your team.

  2. Get professional

    Set up a Facebook business page to attract applicants as well as clients. Ask your family and friends to share your page on social media. Post regularly about your workers, your services and ask clients to post reviews. A regularly updated page will rank higher on search results.

  3. Advertise in relevant channels

    Utilise both online and offline platforms to advertise the job opening. Post on reputable job boards like Seek, support websites such as Mable, and social media platforms. Consider paying for a Facebook advertisement, which is probably less than you think. You can start out with a $50 posting; more or less depending on the geographical area you are targeting and the number of days you wish to run the advert.

  4. Screen applications thoroughly

    Review each application carefully, looking for relevant qualifications, certifications, and experience. Consider conducting phone interviews or pre-screening questionnaires to further assess candidates before scheduling in-person interviews. Before bringing the person on board, it is essential to check their qualifications and certifications. If they have a working with children card, check the number online to ensure it’s still current.

  5. Conduct face-to-face interviews

    Meet with shortlisted candidates to gauge their interpersonal skills, communication abilities, and compatibility with your organisation’s values. Prepare a list of questions to assess their knowledge, experience, and problem-solving skills in disability support.

  6. Seek references and conduct background checks

    Contact references provided by the candidates to gain insights into their past performance and reliability. You’d be surprised what information you can get out of referees. Additionally, request the applicant provide you with a National Police Check to ensure the candidate has a clean record.

  7. Assess empathy and compassion

    Disability support workers should possess empathy, compassion, and a genuine desire to help others. During the interview process, ask scenario-based questions to evaluate their ability to handle challenging situations and demonstrate empathy.

  8. Evaluate relevant experience 

    Look for candidates with prior experience working with individuals with disabilities or similar roles in healthcare, social services, or community support. Experience in supporting specific disabilities or age groups can be an advantage.

  9. Consider cultural competence

    Individuals with disabilities come from diverse backgrounds. Ensure that your support workers have cultural competence and are sensitive to the needs of individuals from different cultural, linguistic, and religious backgrounds.

  10. Offer competitive compensation and benefits

    Consult the SCHADS award to determine what the award pay is and consider what you can add to it. To attract and retain the best disability support workers, provide a competitive salary and benefits package. This includes considering the pay scale for the role, offering opportunities for professional development,, providing a supportive work environment and a great Christmas party.

Remember that ongoing supervision, training, and professional development opportunities are essential for disability support workers to enhance their skills and provide high-quality care to individuals with disabilities.

Regularly review the performance of your support workers and provide constructive feedback to ensure continuous improvement.

Most of all, treat your employees like gold. They are the backbone of your business and will respond to a positive company environment.

Happy hunting!

Amanda Watterson

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