This report presents results from an evaluation of the implementation of the Multi-Tenant Service Centre (MTSC) Pilots Project, which was completed in June 2008. This project was conducted by the Department of Communities (DoC), Queensland Government as part of its Strengthening Non-Government Organisations Strategy which began in July 2004.

The Strengthening NGOs project
This project aimed to find practical ways to support NGOs funded by the Department of Communities and Disability Services Queensland. This was based on a vision for community services that included one where:

  • Clients’ needs are met holistically, effectively and efficiently.
  • Clients can enter the service system through a number of channels and are assured that
  • the service they get will be consistent and quality.
  • Funded organisations are responsive, capable and sustainable.
  • Service providers ensure that clients’ needs are met and are able to effectively identify
  • additional and relevant service providers for their clients and refer them on appropriately.
  • Services are well connected and operate efficiently and effectively to provide appropriate
  • access and packages of support to clients.
  • Scarce resources, including funding dollars, paid staff and volunteers will be supported in
  • administrative and other tasks promoting a greater focus on service delivery (Department
  • of Communities, 2005, p.2).

One of the strategies towards reaching this vision was to help establish closer working relationships between NGOs by encouraging greater use of shared services and collaborative arrangements.

The Multi-Tenant Service Centre Pilots Project
This project was included in the Strengthening NGOs strategy because of its potential to assist NGOs to improve client outcomes, increase service viability, and build capacity. The objective of the MTSC Pilots Project was to co-locate separate service providers in an
appropriately located centre, operating with effective and transparent management, which enabled service providers to improve client services by:

  • Coordinating and/or integrating service delivery across the co-locating services.
  • Making cost savings through the sharing of service delivery activities, space and
  • administrative resources and through systems such as shared book-keeping, information
  • technology services or joint strategic planning.
  • Redirecting costs and time saving into service delivery.

Three MTSCs consortiums in Mackay, Caboolture and Toowoomba were selected as the pilots over a four year period from 2006 – 2010. Each MTSC was encouraged to develop their own co-location model focussed on the best way to deliver services within their own community.

Part 1 of this report presents Learnings and Case Studies from the evaluation. It includes an overview of models of shared service arrangements, case studies of the three pilot projects, and key learnings from the evaluation. Part 2 provides Guidelines and Resources for Establishing Shared and Collaborative Services. These are divided into Guidelines for Non Government Organisations and Guidelines for Project Managers and Coordinators.

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