Updated: Mar 29, 2019
How big and small businesses and disability service providers can make the most of the NDIS
There are now 140,000 Australian’s benefiting from the NDIS and we’re only a few months away from the roll out in and around the Brisbane and Gold Coast areas. More than 90,000 Queenslanders are expected to be accessing NDIS supports by 2019, and government spending on these supports Australia wide, will more than double – reaching around $22 billion per year.
This is significant for all types of businesses, both in and outside the disability sector. It allows you to explore business growth opportunities by tailoring or adding new services for the expanding sector.
Who can benefit under the NDIS?
The introduction of this client-centred funding model means that at the end of the NDIS rollout, the existing disability sector will look much the same as other commercial industries. The providers in the market will be competing – not for disability funding – but for customers whose independence, and quality of life depends on their services.
The choice and control these clients (aka participants) are awarded from these changes, means they can decide who they engage to help them. Here are some examples of business opportunities outside the sector (this is by no means an exhaustive list).
Personal Training and Nutrition – You might be work with a range of different customers with disability and rehabilitation needs.
Cabinet making, carpentry and plastering – Modifying kitchens and areas of the home to allow freedom of movement and higher levels of independence in day to day life.
Painters, landscaping, home maintenance and garden care – You might work with participants to help them build the skills they need to look after their yard to ensure they can uphold the conditions of their lease and maintain accessibility.
Commercial cleaning – You might assist people with disability to take care of their domestic cleaning duties inside and outside their homes.
Hotels, camping grounds and tourist attractions – People with a disability need accessible holiday destinations with inclusive activities. If you own a holiday park or hotel, you might consider partnering with local attractions to offer destination and activity packages.
You can see here, how the NDIS provides business growth opportunities for a range of business types.
Understanding what is ‘reasonable and necessary support’
Once you’ve decided your business has the capacity to assist participants to achieve their goals, it’s helpful to understand the approach the NDIS takes to support people. The NDIS describe this as:
“A lifelong approach to disability that’s been developed around two core principles:
1. Giving people with disability better choice and control over their funding and supports;
2. Helping them reach their goals through reasonable and necessary supports.”
Understanding what makes your services reasonable and necessary, will help you ensure that your products or services will be funded but as you can see, there are opportunities for a range of industries to cater for participants under the NDIS. If you want to find out more information – check the NDIS website for more details.
How First2Care can help you achieve business growth
First2Care is an NDIS Management App for NDIS participants who are self-managing or self-directing their supports. It helps them apply for and manage their plan – but importantly for you – it connects them with support providers and businesses offering services to people with disability.
We currently have hundreds of participants using the app to pre-plan in the lead up to July when the NDIS rolls out in Queensland. Once their plans are finalised, they’ll be looking for support services like yours.
If you aren’t a registered provider you’ll get a two-minute call from us to verify your profile before you can set it all up.
Then it’s time to complete your profile to attract new clients. These tips will get your profile working for you.
Make your profile engaging and easy to read
There are several elements to your profile that will enable you to optimise it so that it appeals to potential new customers. We recommend completing every field if you can.
· Provide an eye-catching logo, or photo of your smiling staff in uniform.
· Complete all your contact details so customers don’t have to go searching.
· Add all your social and website links to enable people to learn more about you.
· Add your ABN (note I didn’t complete it in the example below but you should do so).
· Write a brief bio that compels your customers to want to know more about what you do.
“Keep It Regular is an efficient and affordable cleaning company that helps people in need stay on top of everyday cleaning tasks. Our team of professionals can assist you inside and outside the home, doing as much or as little as you need us to do. We'll even provide training. Contact us today.”
Set your service locations by postcodes, suburbs or state so that you appear in searches for people in those areas. Remember, if you’re offering assistance with pre-planning, Plan Management or Support Coordination, you can often provide these services remotely using First2Care, so you may wish to expand your service area to include those remote locations.
Existing clients can invite you to connect inside their profile and set permissions for you to read or edit different sections within the app. Save time and money on admin tasks by asking therapy or support staff to assist participants with their scheduling during their shift.
Add all your services using the comprehensive list under each NDIS Support Category, as per the NDIS Price Guide. If you haven’t checked the Price Guide for your region, we recommend you download a copy to get a list of the prices for NDIS services that have been set by the NDIA. These prices are updated on an annual basis, effective on the 1st of July each year, so you’ll need to check each update every year.
If you aren’t a registered provider, use the closest matching service to yours.
You might be a Personal Trainer, which means you’ll find your services under Category 12 of the Price Guide – Improved Health and Wellbeing. Just tick the boxes that apply to you.
Build confidence in participants by guiding them through pre-planning using the First2Care template.
Participants are already searching for help with Advocacy and Planning from within the app right now. If you haven’t claimed your profile, then you could be missing out a chance to connect with and build positive relationships with new clients.
When these clients have their plans approved, they might turn to you for Support Coordination or other support. Don’t miss out on this opportunity.
Participants who have approved plans can use First2Care to help them manage their NDIS budget, their goals and schedule their support staff – and while doing so, they’ll tick off the support they need using a checklist of items under each Support Category. Each Support item in the list connects to a provider.
Access these business growth opportunities by listing the products and services you offer within First2Care.
Manage your organisation within the app, by inviting staff to create their own profile, each with different roles and permissions under your Provider Profile. If you’re a Service Provider who offers Plan Management, support scheduling, assistance with goal tracking or a relief pool of support staff, you can assign access to the organisation’s profile to assist different participants with different functions.
Help more participants and grow your business with disability services as the sector booms.
For more information about how First2Care helps connect participants to your services. Find out more on our website.
Over to you
We’d love to know if you’ve thought about becoming an NDIS registered provider, or have any questions about your profile within First2Care. Let us know in the comments.
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