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Annual Report 2019 - 2020

Programs aim to keep staff healthy and safe at work

Supporting our staff to stay safe and be well

This year saw a focus on further embedding the new work, health and safety management initiative, Being Well, to support our long-term vision of a healthy workplace that supports staff.

We started the expansion of the Being Well framework to include Recover at Work, a component to cover staff recovery and rehabilitation from workplace injuries.

Delivering flexible work practices

We completed three flexible work pilots in early 2019 and the consultants’ reports were received in July and August 2019. Insights from the reports informed drafts of our core flexible work documents including:

  • Flexible Work Policy
  • Flexible Work Procedure
  • Flexible Work Managers’ Guide
  • Flexible Work Toolkit, and
  • a range of forms and factsheets to support both managers and employees.

Introducing new safety and wellbeing initiatives

We commenced our implementation of the Safety, Health and Wellbeing Policy and Strategy.

Employees continue to be supported through the provision of early intervention with non-work-related health matters and reasonable adjustments such as ergonomic assessments.

New ergonomic processes and resources were developed to support employees and were soft launched in June 2020.

Other initiatives included:

  • Promoting a positive and proactive approach to mental health through our employee assistance program (EAP), Benestar. Usage of the EAP during 2019 was 6.71 percent, with an increased rate of 15.31 percent in 2020.
  • Supporting 92 employees through the provision of reasonable adjustments.
  • Coordinating support for 51 employees with non-work-related health matters.

Mental health first aid officers

We increased the number of mental health first aid officers (MHFAO) across the organisation, now with 57 trained MHFAO across 21 office locations. These officers maintain their knowledge and skills through weekly updates on mental health topics and by attending webinars.

Unreasonable client behaviour

We partnered with the Centre for Corporate Health to write a face-to-face training program on working with clients with (or who demonstrate) unreasonable behaviours. This content will be converted into an eLearning course for all client-facing employees to undertake.

The Centre for Corporate Health will be engaged to conduct the face-to-face training with employees who have been nominated as subject matter experts and to provide annual masterclass refresher sessions.

Workers compensation claims and associated costs

Staff recorded 156 workplace incidents this year. There were 28 injury/illness notifications reported to the insurer, of which 15 were cost-impacting workers compensation claims.

Mechanism breakdown for injury/illness notifications

Mechanism2017–182018–192019–20
Chemicals and other substances1
Vehicle incidents and other733
Falls, trips and slips869
Hitting objects with a part of the body111
Being hit by moving objects143
Body stressing757
Mental stress334
Total292328

Of these claims, 63.4 percent were related to unreasonable client conduct and/or threats from clients, which is a decrease of 5.5 percent since 2018–2019.

There was an overall 24 percent reduction in incidents recorded since last year.

Fifteen workers compensation claims were accepted. The total net incurred cost of these claims was $160,514.

  • 73 percent of claims (11 claims) related to physical injuries, accounting for 20 percent of claim totals, and
  • 27 percent of claims (4 claims) related to psychological injuries, accounting for 80 percent of claim totals.

Year ahead iconThe year ahead

  • We will create a framework and resources relating to a mentally healthy workplace.
  • We will develop a policy around managing vicarious trauma.
  • We will create and distribute a Connect to Support Guide to all staff that details how they can access support and assistance.