Em­ploy­ment pro­gram go­ing the ex­tra mile

Dubbo Photo News - - Front Page - By NATALIE HOLMES

WITH 40 per cent of Dubbo’s un­em­ployed made up of Abo­rig­i­nal peo­ple, one of the city’s largest em­ploy­ers is tak­ing steps to al­ter the sta­tis­tics by us­ing a strate­gic ap­proach.

Fletcher In­ter­na­tional Ex­ports in­tro­duced their FACES pro­gram as a way to break down bar­ri­ers and get more indige­nous peo­ple into the work­force.

The com­pany’s HR and com­pli­ance man­ager Maddy Her­bert has been in­volved in rolling out the pro­gram.

“We have a real aim of get­ting peo­ple into the work­force and fo­cused, with a view to keep­ing them go­ing long-term,” she said.

WITH 40 per cent of Dubbo’s un­em­ployed made up of Abo­rig­i­nal peo­ple, one of the city’s largest em­ploy­ers is tak­ing steps to al­ter the sta­tis­tics by us­ing a strate­gic ap­proach.

Fletcher In­ter­na­tional Ex­ports in­tro­duced their FACES (Fletcher Abo­rig­i­nal Cul­ture Em­ploy­ment Strat­egy) pro­gram as a way to break down bar­ri­ers and get more indige­nous peo­ple into the work­force.

The com­pany’s HR and com­pli­ance man­ager Maddy Her­bert has been in­volved in rolling out the pro­gram since its in­cep­tion six months ago.

“What we’re aim­ing to do is to get lo­cal peo­ple, par­tic­u­larly indige­nous peo­ple, into the work­force with the sup­port they need,” she said.

Miss Her­bert ex­plained that the com­pany of­fers trainee­ships in meat pro­cess­ing and their aim is to re­tain em­ploy­ees long-term.

“We have a real aim of get­ting peo­ple into the work­force and fo­cused, with a view to keep­ing them go­ing long-term,” she said.

“We’ve of­fered sup­port in dif­fer­ent ways – by help­ing them find ac­com­mo­da­tion, trans­port, even child­care.

“When you start a new job, your whole life changes. For the longterm un­em­ployed, ex­ist­ing sup­port is cut off. We of­fer sup­port through that crit­i­cal pe­riod, they can come for help to ap­ply for pri­vate hous­ing, trans­port, get­ting their li­cence.

“We are do­ing ev­ery­thing we can to as­sist peo­ple in any way we can, to pro­vide sup­port and men­tor­ing, to get them through the door and keep them here. The idea is to keep them go­ing long-term,” Ms Her­bert told Dubbo Photo News.

“What’s good for the FACES pro­ject is good for the whole work­force.”

Ear­lier in the year, the Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment an­nounced the Tai­lored As­sis­tance Em­ploy­ment Grants as part of its Indige­nous Ad­vance­ment Strat­egy to con­nect Abo­rig­i­nal and Torres Strait Is­lan­der peo­ple to jobs and more Aus­tralians into work. HR and com­pli­ance man­ager at Fletcher’s, Maddy Her­bert, has been in­volved in rolling out the FACES pro­gram since the be­gin­ning. “We have a real aim of get­ting peo­ple into the work­force and fo­cused, with a view to keep­ing them go­ing long-term,” Ms Her­bert said.

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