When I'm at work: Supported employee induction Trainer's guide
Key topics and strategies
You can customise the learner’s workbook to your organisation and to each new supported employee, depending on their needs. In the areas that are highlighted in grey, insert relevant induction information from your workplace to create a customised workbook for each new supported employee.
Here are some examples of content and suggested inclusions that may or may not be relevant to your organisation. You also need to decide on the details to be covered in each topic, depending on the new supported employee’s needs.
The Disability Services Standards
- The Disability Services Standards exist to clearly establish what is expected of Disability Business Services, and to encourage the continuous improvement of service quality through partnership between service providers, service recipients, and the Australian Government. The Standards have been developed to implement a shared common goal to improve service quality to better meet the needs of people with disability.
- Describe the specifics of the job for the new supported employee. Make sure you have the induction kit, any keys, cards, or PPE that will be required on the first day.
- Select the appropriate version of the DVD ‘When I’m at work: Supported employee induction’, and show it. This will provide the new supported employee with an introduction to what is expected of them. Tips for showing the DVD, aimed at maximising its usefulness, are included in the DVD section of this guide.
- After you have shown the DVD, discuss with the new supported employee their expectations of the organisation and explain in detail your expectations of them at different times during their employment with the Disability Business Service.
Overview of the workplace
- New supported employees, whether they have work experience or not, will
be unfamiliar with their new environment and its associated procedures and
processes. Therefore, it is important that the new supported employee is
inducted into the organisation as early as possible, and that they understand:
- that they are a valued worker
- what their position is
- how they fit into the ‘big picture’.
- Explain to the new supported employee:
- the industry
- the nature and structure of the organisation
- roles of key people in the organisation
- key jobs, tasks and responsibilities.
- One of the main stressors for the new supported employee may be having to remember who their new colleagues/team members are and the positions of those people in the organisation.
- It is important to not only tell the new supported employee who these people are, but to actually introduce them. This is where an induction buddy is particularly useful. Pair the new supported employee with a worker who can ‘show them the ropes’ during the first couple of weeks. This induction buddy can support the supervisor/team leader in explaining the work and procedures to the new supported employee, and make the new supported employee feel at home more quickly.
- It is also helpful to explain to the new supported employee what the induction buddy’s job involves and how they will interact with the new supported employee.
- Try and have the person responsible for each area available during the walk around to welcome the new supported employee, and introduce the other employees.
Map of the workplace
- A sample workplace map, as shown in the learner’s workbook, follows. It is a good idea to have a map like this available for the new supported employee to use until they become familiar with their new workplace. You can draw arrows on the workplace map to show the new supported employee where they will be working, and other important areas.
- Time should be taken to go through this map while conducting the walk around, referring the new supported employee to it regularly.
Emergency procedures and phone numbers
- Show the new supported employee all the locations of emergency contact numbers.
- Give the new supported employee a copy of the contact numbers they might need to access quickly or regularly.
Code of conduct
- Talk the new supported employee through the organisation’s policies, taking time to explain each of them in detail, providing copies where appropriate.
- If necessary, take the new supported employee to the relevant area when you are explaining different policies, for example, to the finance department when discussing pay.
- Beyond policy, induction should also cover such things as how to carry out common administrative tasks, like ordering stationery and explaining key information systems.
- Standards of dress are important in any organisation. Explain the organisation’s dress/uniform requirements in full. Have the uniform (if applicable) available on the day, along with any specific PPE required.
Roles and responsibilities
- Explain the new supported employee’s role as it pertains to the organisation’s business, as well as where it fits in to the overall production of the end product/service, how important it is and that there is an expectation of them to do their best.
- During the walk-around to familiarise the new supported employee with the workplace, physically point out areas where smoking is and is not allowed. If the organisation has a printed policy, have it available, or include it as part of the learner’s workbook. Ensure that additional inclusions are made to highlight items that might exist in other policies and not in the standard workplace smoking rules, such as smoking in work vehicles.
- Refer to any policy documents highlighting how important it is for all employees to understand that consumption of alcohol, or being at work while under the influence of alcohol, is not allowed, as it can be a danger to others as well as themselves for various reasons, including physical safety.
Working hours and meal breaks
- Have the relevant industrial relations award available to explain specific hours of work. Meal breaks and the minimum hours that must be spent at work should be specified in the letter of agreement. You should highlight this to the new supported employee.
Applying for leave
- Have a copy of the leave application procedures and each type of leave form with you, and explain each one. Fill out a couple of ‘dummy’ forms with the new supported employee, and show them what the process is after the forms have been filled out.
Training at work
- Explain the training timeline to the new supported employee and that they will be assessed on an ongoing basis. Emphasise that training does not stop after the initial employment training, but builds as they grow in ability, providing more skills that in turn will result in pay reviews. Let them know that the team leader/ supervisor is always willing to talk about training, not only regarding the skills required of the new supported employee, but also regarding the employee’s possible desire to acquire more skills.
Access and equity, and equal employment opportunity
- Have copies of the organisation’s access and equity policies on hand and lead the new supported employee through them, leaving the employee with copies of policies that are appropriate to them. Introduce the new supported employee to the staff members who are responsible for access and equity workplace processes.
- Explain the meaning of equal employment opportunity. If the organisation has an equal employment opportunity officer, introduce that person to the new supported employee and outline the contact procedure.
Complaints about work
- Explain the Complaints Resolution and Referral Service (CRRS). Ensure the new supported employee has easy access to the CRRS contact phone number (1800 880 052) and knows that this avenue can be taken should the organisation’s complaints process not be satisfactory. Explain that the supervisor/team leader should always be available to help with the complaints process.
- If the organisation has a disability liaison officer (DLO), introduce that person to the new supported employee and outline the contact procedure.
Harassment and bullying
- Make reference to relevant organisational policy documents that highlight that harassment and bullying in the workplace is not tolerated.
Privacy and confidentiality
- Everyone has the right to privacy and confidentiality. Explain where and how confidential information about employees is kept and the organisational procedures followed for disclosure that are followed.
Occupational health and safety (OH&S)
- Have copies of the organisation’s OH&S policies on hand and lead the new supported employee through them, leaving the employee with copies of policies that are appropriate to them.
- Explain the OH&S policy, safe work procedures, and the roles and responsibilities of OH&S representatives to the new supported employee.
- Highlight hazards in the workplace, how they are controlled, how to report safety issues and how the new supported employee will be kept informed about health and safety issues.
- Show and explain the paperwork required in the event of a workplace incident. Have human resources (HR) and/or an OH&S committee member available to explain the process if possible.
First aid procedures
- Provide details about locations of first aid kits, employees with first aid qualifications, procedures for emergencies, phone numbers.
Other suggested topics for the induction process include:
- pay details
- Employee Advisory Group
- employee representative
- support services
- security of personal belongings and vehicles
- public transport
- petty cash and reimbursement of claims