A major staff survey in the National Disability Insurance Scheme Quality and Safeguards Commission (NDISQSC) has revealed shocking rates of staff dissatisfaction and widespread concern about workplace culture and management.

The Community and Public Sector Union says the survey, completed by 72% of staff, confirms issues previously raised by union members - that workloads are excessive, staff are burnt out and workplaces are toxic.

Workers at the agency, which oversees regulation, registrations and complaints relating to the National Disability Insurance Scheme, have overwhelmingly reported significant issues with workplace culture and work practices:

  • 46% reported workloads that were well above capacity, while only 15% said workloads were at the right level.
  • Only 37% believe internal communication within the agency is effective.
  • Just 31% believe change is managed well.
  • While 73% of respondents report their workgroup has the appropriate skills, capabilities and knowledge to perform well, only 28% believe they are provided the tools and resources needed.
  • 63% say they are pursuing another job outside the agency.

Following the release of the survey results, CPSU representatives met with NDISQSC management and the workplace safety regulator, Comcare, to address the issues raised.

Despite the high survey response rate, Comcare claimed the APS census was ‘not really factual’ and couldn’t be relied upon, while NDISQSC management deflected union concerns, claiming the new Chief Operating Officer, who commenced after the survey was conducted, and has made positive changes.

CPSU representatives say survey responses make clear that staff have had enough of management’s dismissive attitude to their concerns and need to seriously engage staff and their union representatives to address the issues.

Quotes attributable to CPSU Deputy Secretary, Beth Vincent-Pietsch:  

“While the NDISQSC staff survey results are shocking, they are unfortunately not surprising. CPSU members have been raising the alarm on exactly these issues and pushing for urgent improvements for some time.

“Our members have put forward solutions to improve work practices and workplace culture, but NDISQSC management has failed to listen to their own staff.

“The dismissive attitude of management to staff concerns is made clear in the survey responses – with only 36% saying they believe the agency will act on issues identified in the survey.

“These workers believe strongly in the importance of the work they do – 93% say they believe strongly in the purpose and objectives of the agency.

“Staff want the agency to function well so that it can fulfill its role in improving the delivery of the critically important National Disability Insurance Scheme and resolving concerns of participants and providers.

“NDISQSC management needs to sit down and work with staff and the union to urgently address the issues raised and get the agency functioning well.”

Media Contact: Liz Bower 0408 405 121