The Launch of JobsABILITY

The JobsABILITY initiative was officially launched by Minister Petrusma on behalf of Premier Will Hodgman on Friday 18 November at Parliament House. The launch established the importance of addressing workforce shortages by attracting all sectors of the labour market.

National Disability Services (NDS) has developed the JobsABILITY initiative to support employers in addressing their labour supply challenge. JobsABILITY provides a pathway to securing work-ready staff via engagement with their website and free 30-minute consultations.

A number of Tasmanian industries have already put their support behind the JobsABILITY initiative, including the Tasmanian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Tasmanian Hospitality Association, Tourism Industry Council Tasmania, TasICT and the Tasmanian Small Business Council.

The JobsABILITY launch attracted over 80 attendees from across the political spectrum, as well as representatives from the business community, the state government, and the employment services sector. TCCI Chair, Susan Parr also attended the launch, explaining that she “encourages all employers to consider the opportunities that people with a disability could bring to their business.”

Guest Speaker, Stephen Long, Workforce Development Manager for the Tasmanian Hospitality Association (THA) spoke of their newest staff member; 22-year-old Ross Kent. Ross is THA’s new Social Media Analyst, working primarily in the THA Great Customer Experience Program.

Mr. Long explained that it was clear through the interview process Ross had the requisite skills for the role and quickly grasped the THA’s needs and expectations. Ross is punctual, very reliable and fits easily into the workplace.

Ross was born with cerebral palsy, which of course hasn’t stopped him from becoming a valued staff member of the THA.

Among Ross’s duties is the analysis of social media platforms for customer engagement and satisfaction, with Tasmanian Tourism and Hospitality venues. In particular, Ross focuses on customer interactions on TripAdvisor and Facebook. The information Ross obtains is valuable to businesses who undertake the Program to improve the customer experiences in their venues and build customer loyalty. Ross’s work enables Program presenters and venues to get a better picture of how venues are being experienced by customers and which facets of their social media engagement can be improved.

In an acknowledgement of the value Ross brings to the THA, he has recently had his initial contract extended for a further six months.

Tasmania has the highest rate of disability in the country at 25 per cent, yet only around 46 per cent of those of working age participate in the labour market. This highlights that there is a pool of work-ready people available with a variety of skills and qualifications just like Ross.

Did you know:
• 87% of the public prefer to give their business to companies who employ people with disability
• Over 33% of working Australians with disability are employed in managerial, professional and administrative roles
• Loyalty, punctuality and a positive work ethic are some of the common attributes among people with disability

If you need staff for your workplace, contact JobsABILITY to book a free 30-minute consultation.