Founded in 1986, Australian Home Care (AHC) provides customised personal care and home help for people with disabilities, people recovering from illness or injury, to aged clients, people in their homes, residential services, workplaces and schools.
AHC’s 1,300 personal carers work alongside over 5,000 Australians every year and are respected as experts in post-surgery support, assisting with daily care and living routines, and supporting more intensive care needs.
In May 2018, AHC was acquired by Zenitas Healthcare. The sale means that more comprehensive services will be available, the larger entity will be able to compete more strongly in the market for the best employees and is better equipped to continue the quality of care that both brands are known for.
Natalija Kotinis, HR Manager at Australian Home Care Services, says that personal carers are ‘vital’ to the business.
“They help us achieve our ultimate goal and our commitment to making a difference in people’s lives,” she says. “It is their provision of quality services that supports individuals to achieve their goals and independence.”
The way AHC recruits personal carers and support workers has always been a little different.
“We use a range of outsourcing models,” says Natalija. “In-house recruiters tend to have a fairly standard way of recruiting. We’ve found that if you can work with the right provider or providers, they will have the technology, the drive and the stamina, and the perspective that really helps.”
Working with Newly
Natalija and her team have worked with Newly on an ad hoc basis since 2015.
More recently, AHC decided to trial a range of recruitment options. One of the models they investigated was working with a provider who invests in tailored quality candidates. They didn’t want a labour hire strategy with a ‘volume’ objective.
“Newly came up trumps because their values aligned with this approach,” says Natalija.
“It’s been a great model for us working this way,” she adds. “Employers tend to be a bit scared of outsourcing recruitment, but for us it’s been a great success.”
Natalija says that Newly has provided AHC with quality candidates and tailored solutions, and that they have enjoyed the ongoing partnership because Newly ‘helps you to achieve your company goals, they work with you and don’t just bill and run.’
Newly is now a major provider to AHC in New South Wales and Victoria.
“Competition for the best talent continues to intensify as the gap between candidate supply and demand continues to grow in key industries and geographies,” she says. “Expert, niche providers will have a key role.”
In order for AHC to be able to meet the needs of the future workforce, they need to consider as many options as possible to deliver the skilled and productive workforce required.
The new consumer directed models of care will mean a greater skills mix is required in existing and emerging roles.
“Addressing the gap in skill sets of support workers is critical to laying the foundation for them to be well equipped, successful and committed to client programs and care. If managed effectively, the structure will maximise the chances of the employee ‘fitting in’ to the organisation, demonstrating a positive attitude to their work and ultimately being retained by AHC,” explains Natalija.
“This will see significant savings in employee turnover and retention, and be indicative of AHC’s ongoing commitment to client care.”