The word ‘independence’ is a term that not everyone understands, especially when it comes to the NDIS and disability support services. It’s an exciting time to work in the disability sector – there’s a lot of transformational change happening and it affects how we’ll deliver our services.
OnSide is paving the way for this change but it’s not without its challenges. Our business model has had independence baked into it from day one, both for our customers and for us as a company. Let’s unpack what this looks like and how we’re working to change things for the better.
When we talk about independence for our customers, we’re really talking about how we can support them in making more informed decisions about what they need. We walk alongside our customers and offer unbiased, independent support coordination geared towards achieving the goals set out in their NDIS plan.
As an independent provider, we don’t have financial affiliations with any other providers, nor do we offer other services in-house. Our job is to connect our customers with the right services at the right time and link them in with their local community at the same time. And because we only offer the one service, there’s no conflict of interest and we can focus on offering flexible support that’s at a pace tailored to the individual.
It’s about capacity building
Independence is just one part of what we offer at OnSide. We’re always asking ourselves: how can I put the customer in the driver’s seat? This will look different for each person as disability is a broad category and people’s needs vary over time.
OnSide Support Coordinators are hired for their experience in the industry and are incredibly passionate about what they do. We embrace a ‘small steps’ philosophy to capacity building.
Often our customers aren’t used to making decisions about their own needs and even having a choice about the gender of their Support Coordinator might be the first say they’ve had in the kind of support they need. And because we’re there, every step of the way, encouraging them to take the wheel and steer, capacity can be built steadily at a rate that’s comfortable for the customer.
It’s about choice and control
Unlike other non-independent providers, our customers won’t get stuck with services they don’t like or aren’t a good fit. In a recent Q&A, Kollen Sussman (founder of OnSide) explained: “we are able to access the specialist for what you need, when you need it and to be able to monitor and adjust as required. If something isn’t working, we can approach it from another angle.”
This flexibility, combined with a professional practice model, is what makes OnSide different to other service providers (even the ones that provide support coordination). The services a customer needs can evolve and change at any given time, so it’s important that we can evolve and change our approach in parallel.
It’s about putting customers’ needs first
When a customer first receives their NDIS plan, it’s an exciting time. However, often the excitement wears off because the plan is quite complex and doesn’t reflect the detailed personal needs they discussed in their initial meeting.
And even though every plan has a portion of NDIS funding set aside for support coordination, it can be hard to know what to do or where to go. We get it – and we’re here to demystify the process.
Independence at OnSide isn’t a ‘cookie cutter’ approach. If you or someone you know is looking for assistance with their NDIS plan, contact us and we’ll get back to you within 24 hours with what your options are. From there, you may be invited to book a free, no-obligation meeting with one of our Support Coordinators to talk about your options.