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genU and Barwon Health partnership

genU and Barwon Health partnership brings Disability Action Plan to life

Nearly 20 job seekers living with disability are now enjoying employment as the result of a collaboration between Barwon Health and genU’s disability, employment and training services.

One of Australia’s largest regional employers, Barwon Health provides extensive health services to the local community.

When their Environment Services team was unable to recruit for the high volume of cleaning and other roles needed in locations across the region, they looked for a creative solution.

A conversation between Leah Twaits from genU’s disability Employment Pathways and Jacinta Kenny, Talent Acquisition Manager at Barwon Health, sparked a productive partnership that enabled the organisation to implement their Disability Action Plan into new areas, connecting with new quality candidates who live with disability.

Barwon Health Talent Acquisition Officer Jackie Matthews said the partnership was a great opportunity to recruit people into the roles.

“There can be quite a few steps in the recruitment process, including checks, and paperwork when first joining the health industry as we all share a responsibility to protect vulnerable consumers, ourselves and the community,” Jackie said.

“Sometimes that can be overwhelming for people but Barwon Health, Matchworks and genU together can support candidates the whole way through.”

With MatchWorks support, the Talent Acquisition team simplified and documented the recruitment process to be more inclusive. As specialists in disability employment services, MatchWorks consultants worked one-on-one with candidates to meet the requirements of working in the large healthcare organisation.

genU Training also created a tailored and comprehensive five-day orientation program to ensure new employees had a positive introduction to the organisation. This was complemented by ongoing support from the MatchWorks team so successful candidates could settle well into their new roles.

Barwon Health has a Disability Participation Action Plan and some of the key deliverables around employee experience this year is to review current recruitment processes, create toolkits and resources for hiring managers to assist them and to hire more people with any type of disability including neurodiversity.

“This partnership is only the beginning of some of the great work to come. Everyone should have the opportunity to work, build connections and know that they are giving value. I am so proud of the work we are doing together,” Jackie said.

The success of the partnership to date has given the team at Barwon Health additional experience and valuable insights so that they are able to start to expand their focus into different types of roles in other areas of the organisation to further develop their Disability Participation Action plan.

Norlane resident Kim Lockwood was one of the successful candidates to benefit from the genU and Barwon Health partnership. After a significant break from work dealing with multiple health issues, Kim now works as a cleaner in Environment Services at Barwon Health North.

“I’ve got a talent out there and I’ve found it… They showed how and gave me a demonstration and encouraged me to go for it,” said Kim.

Kim continues to benefit from finding work that suits her and her life.

“I’ve really opened up in the last few months. I know it’s a happy time and that’s my happy place.”