NDIS Quality and Safeguards Framework: Best practices for preventing compliance toothaches

Just like the recall letter for a dental check-up NDIS providers in SA and NSW have recently received their letter from the NDIS Commission outlining the start date for registration renewal. TheNDIS quality application for renewal will involve a self-assessment followed by a field audit conducted by a NDIS Commission-approved NDIS quality auditor.

While some providers are already expected to start the process by October, others are due for their check-up in 2019. Most providers are aware that the new Quality & Safeguards Framework has introduced a list of requirements however we have noticed some misconceptions about compliance which we aim to brush away:

Misconception # 1: You only brush your teeth when you see the dentist.

Continue reading…


Supercharging your customers’ NDIS goals

Over the next 18 months while NDIA struggles to catch up with the delayed NDIS roll-out nationally, we expect that the quality of formal NDIS plans being generated by planners will continue to be mostly sub-standard, simply because planners can’t afford adequate time to facilitate thorough planning.

What to do?

Well, in NSW and SA, NDIS providers are already compelled to prepare a participant ‘Support Plan’ in relation to the services they are providing, per the NDIS Commission’s Practice Standard Core Module Part 4 section 19. The Support Plan must support achievement of goals as described in a client’s NDIS plan.

We suggest that this is the perfect opportunity to address any shortcomings of the NDIS plan, and to get to know your customer better by working with them to prepare a good quality plan for the services that you will provide them. Naturally your support plan will need to link to the all-important funded goals in the NDIS plan, but this is an opportunity to go much further and breathe life into the NDIS participant’s life aspirations.

What does a good quality person-centred plan look like? A good plan will articulate SMART goals, something we see only occasionally in NDIS plans. Continue reading…


Seven key actions to deliver the NDIS sustainably

Prof Bruce Bonyhady is Executive Chair and Director of the Melbourne Disability Institute, an inter-disciplinary research institute at the University of Melbourne, and was the inaugural chair of the NDIA from 2013 to 2016. As one of the original architects of the NDIS, Prof Bonyhady still holds true to the founding principles, which are becoming somewhat lost in the face of a very challenging implementation schedule. Prof Bonyhady spoke at a recent CBB event for disability service providers in South Australia. Here are his recommended actions that governments should take in order to get back on track and deliver the NDIS sustainably, many of which are aligned to the conclusions of the Productivity Commission Review of NDIS Costs, published late last year. Continue reading…


NDIS: not business as usual – NDIS invoicing and payment requests

On 19 July the NDIS announced changes to the provider and participant portal.  Providers and participants will now be able to edit, or immediately cancel, service bookings. If the provider rejectsNDIS invoicing and payment requests a revision, a reason or explanatory note can be posted.

These are major improvements to NDIS service bookings which we discussed in the second instalment of this three part series. NDIS processes are constantly evolving. It highlights the need for providers to stay up to date and to readily adapt their processes and procedures. Ensure staff roles are clearly defined – who keeps abreast of NDIS changes, who updates procedures and who communicates changes to staff, and potentially to your clients?

In this third and last instalment we discuss NDIS invoicing and payment requests for your service delivery. We also give ideas on how your organisation can create a focus on continuous improvements to your NDIS business processes. Continue reading…


NDIS: Not business as usual – Part Two

NDIS service bookingsWhen setting off on the NDIS journey it is tempting to pretend that it is business as usual without thinking whether your organisation and customers are fit for travel and what’s the best way to get to the destination. In our first instalment in a series of three we discussed how to support your customers for their first NDIS planning meeting and how to ensure timely plan implementation for the NDIS services they would like to purchase from you.  In this second instalment we give guidance on NDIS service agreements, service bookings and record keeping of your service delivery. Continue reading…


NDIS: Not business As Usual

As the NDIS rolls out providers are urged to transform their business processes and systems. The move from block funding to payment for hours of service provided requires good preparation, NDIS: Not business as usualorganisation and commitment. Registering as a NDIS provider is only the first step. New ways need to be developed, trialled and adjusted as part of your NDIS planning to interact with your customers and the new way of funding.

We have identified ten steps along the NDIS customer journey that you must take when your customer becomes a NDIS participant and selects you as a service provider. Continue reading…


NDIS Overheads

In our last two instalments, we explained how to calculate gross margins and net margins for each of your NDIS service lines, and discussed non-chargeable time and how to minimise it. We’ve left the most challenging subject until last – NDIS overheads.

The reason this subject is difficult is that the longer you’ve been in business and the bigger your organisation size, the more difficult it will be to squeeze or remove overheads.

The unfortunate fact is that current NDIS providers of core supports who have transitioned from block funding to NDIS funding will probably be bleeding cash, for three reasons: Continue reading…


NDIS $ margins

Our ‘ex-accountant’ Brendon Grail shares some of his Activity Based Costing knowledge, in accessible terms that are relevant to NDIS.

Retail businesses understand (and are arguably obsessed by) their gross margin for every product on the shelf. Alas, we don’t meet many NDIS providers who can quote the percentage margins for each of their NDIS services.

In the world of tight, capped NDIS pricing, we suggest that every CEO and CFO should have those figures top of mind. Boards are also likely to be increasingly interested in this subject if they see balance sheet runways (i.e. the number of months of operating costs they hold in current assets) shortening.

The question we often get asked by disability providers is, how can we calculate margins without going through a complicated activity based costing exercise?

Here is how in four easy steps: Continue reading…


Will NDIS turn your organisation upside down? The answer lies in your business model (Part 3)

In Part 1 of this piece, we looked at the ‘understanding your market’ and ‘service delivery’ aspects of a business model in the NDIS world.

In Part 2 we looked at ‘marketing and sales pipeline’ – one of the most challenging aspects for most NDIS disability service providers.

In this the final instalment, we look at financials. How you generate revenue is the key driver of your business model. Continue reading…