NDIS workforce longitudinal research study

We undertook a study of the Victorian disability workforce to understand their experience of transition to the NDIS and to support them better.

What is a longitudinal study?

A longitudinal study collects data over time and makes comparisons. We asked many of the same questions each year, and then compared the results. It allowed us to identify changes in behaviours and opinions from one survey to the next.

Why we did this

The NDIS means a big change for participants, but also for people working in the disability sector.

In some areas in Victoria the disability workforce will need to grow considerably to meet the needs of participants.

The NDIS also demands new skills and new ways of working. This may affect the structure of the workforce and employment arrangements.

With greater understanding, we can build a skilled, diverse workforce that delivers high-quality, innovative support and feels valued for the work it does.

What we're doing to understand workforce needs

In partnership with the Health and Community Services Union, we commissioned IPSOS Public Affairs to conduct three annual surveys of the workforce, starting in 2018.

The project is a key component of Keeping our sector strong: Victoria’s workforce plan for the NDIS. This is a whole-of-government approach to workforce and skills development for the NDIS in Victoria.

What we asked

We asked the workforce to tell us about:

  • demographics and occupational data
  • training and qualifications
  • working conditions
  • perceptions of the NDIS
  • how people feel about their work

We'll use the results of each study to tell us what we can do to support the NDIS workforce as well as participants. 

2018 survey results

In 2018:

  • 779 workers responded to the survey
  • 37 workers participated in focus groups
  • 55 workers participated in in-depth interviews

Key findings

  • 52% felt positive about their work and most workers wanted to stay in the sector
  • workers are passionate about what they do and support the vision of the NDIS
  • they want more career opportunities and pathways
  • they're concerned about job quality and security
  • they want more time for non-participant facing work, such as training
  • they want better information about the NDIS

Read the 2018 report

2019 survey results

The second year of the study confirmed what we learnt the previous year.

In 2019:

  • in total, 722 workers responded to the survey
  • 394 workers participated in the survey for the first time
  • 32 workers participated in focus groups
  • 55 workers participated in in-depth interviews

Key findings

  • key findings from 2018 are still relevant
  • workers continue to be passionate about what they do and support the vision of the NDIS
  • they understand the NDIS has potential to increase innovation and create new opportunities
  • they’re concerned about job quality and security, and safety
  • they feel there is less time for collaboration and learning
  • their experiences differ depending on what type of worker they are and what stage of rollout they are in

Read the full 2019 report

2020 survey results

The results of the 2020 study are being finalised and will be available soon.

Our response

We would like to thank the many disability workers who have participated in the study for sharing their experience of the transition to the NDIS.

We're working to help overcome the challenges identified during the study by:

Reviewed 19 July 2021

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