The community services industry is undergoing significant transformation. The industry has demonstrated expertise in identifying and responding to client and community need, but is now facing new challenges, such as an ageing population, workforce shortages, sector-wide reforms, technological advances and economic uncertainty.

The rapid pace of change taking place in the industry is creating significant challenges and opportunities for organisations. These include:

  • new models such as place-based approaches and person centred care
  • the move of funding control from the organisation to the individual
  • the move from input to outcome and ultimately impact measurement and the associated shift to results-based funding
  • important reforms being formulated and implemented in areas like disability, child safety, homelessness, mental health, community mental health and aged care services
  • demographic shifts such as the ageing population and the growth in population in terms of number, age and diversity
  • the community’s changing expectations about their growing needs for care.

It is becoming increasingly important that the industry make short, medium and long term plans to address these challenges.

To prepare for the service delivery and workforce impacts of these reforms, community sector organisations will need to critically examine their business model. In many cases this will require organisations to adjust their model to support their future operations and ensure they can continue to meet the requirements of the community and maintain viability.

Having a successful business model and strong business practices is relevant in all sectors, including the not-for-profit sector.

Business success will mean different things for different community services organisations, but it's likely to include high quality services, highly satisfied customers, capacity to adapt and grow and achievement of outcomes. To achieve business success, organisations will require financially viable business models, strategic governance and leadership and fit-for-purpose staffing models.

The Business Development Package aims to support organisational readiness for the changes occurring across the community services industry.

The package is funded by the Queensland Government as part of the Sector Readiness and Workforce Capacity Initiative, led by the Health and Community Services Workforce Council and Queensland National Disability Services.

The Business Development Package contains the following components.

    Organisational development toolkit

    Three online self-assessment tools to guide organisations through:

    • strategic review
    • organisational capability self-assessment
    • capability development plan

        Organisational development modules

        Four online training modules that provide more detailed information and support in the following key areas:

          • collaboration
          • workforce planning
          • costing, pricing and budgeting
          • leadership

            Business development resources

            Links to publicly available resources across a range of business development areas to support organisational readiness.

            Leading Through Futures Thinking, is a strategic foresight resource designed for disability service providers to engage in challenging current thinking and practice and create alternatives to how services and supports are currently offered. To access this resource, click here and go to Topic 9.

            Strategic assessment of your organisational viability and sustainability is critical to your preparedness for the introduction of the National Disability Insurance Scheme to Queensland. To access resources to help you with your preparation, click here and go to Topic 10.

            Other changes and reforms

              Read more about the change and reforms impacting the community services industry in the influences and reforms within community services fact sheet, or visit the following websites:

              National Disability Insurance Scheme and the establishment of the National Disability Insurance Agency

              Your Life Your Choice: Self-Directed Support Framework

              Queensland Child Protection Commission of Inquiry

              Queensland Mental Health Commission

              Australian Charities and Not-for-Profit Commission

              Health and Community Services Industry - Building a stronger economy and a fairer Queensland

              Health and Community Services Industry - Skills and Workforce Development Report

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