No matter whether you work with registered or unregistered providers, it’s essential to find people with whom you feel comfortable and happy. Consider these tips for building strong, long-lasting connections with your providers.
1. Use service agreements
Service agreements may seem like a formality, especially if you’re working with someone you’ve known for years. However, these agreements are important for setting expectations and stating the responsibilities clearly of both providers and participants. Clear service agreements protect both parties and reduce the likelihood of disagreements or misunderstandings. Your agreements should include:
Once your service agreements are in place, don’t forget to send a copy to your plan manager so that they’re aware of the terms you’ve made with your providers.
2. Know your rights and responsibilities
Remember that you are ultimately in charge of your care and well-being. NDIS providers can make recommendations, but you should never feel forced to act on a suggestion. A good service provider will give you guidance and help you understand why they’re suggesting a particular course, care, or action.
On the flip side, participants have responsibilities too. You should know your plan and goals. If you have questions about something a provider has suggested, do research on your own or check with your support coordinator or plan manager for guidance.
3. Mutual respect and kindness
Great personal and professional relationships start with respect and kindness. It’s always important to maintain these values, even if you don’t see eye-to-eye with your providers 100 percent of the time. Treat your providers kindly and expect the same in return from the people you work with.
4. Good communication
Like respect and kindness, communication is another skill that can make or break your provider relationships. You don’t have to be a talented speaker or a “people person” to succeed at communication - you just need to be clear, honest, and respectful as you talk with providers.
Further, don’t forget to be considerate. If you’re preparing to switch providers or discontinue a service, give your current provider notice ahead of time so that they’re aware. Review your service agreements regularly so that you know your provider’s terms for cancelation or changes.
5. Backup plans
Your NDIS providers will occasionally need to take a break or go on a holiday. If you know that your provider is going out of town, arrange for backup help so that you don’t have to contact them while they’re away. Even if they’re happy to help you while on a break, it’s a kind gesture to give them space until they return to work.
6. Persistently search for the right people
It’s not unusual to switch providers during your NDIS journey. Your goals and needs will evolve over time, providers will move or retire, and you’ll find that some people just aren’t the best fit for your personality. Searching for providers can feel overwhelming, so be sure to rely on others for guidance.
Your support coordinator or plan manager can give you a list of providers for specific areas. Additionally, internet searching can be helpful for finding recommendations and reviews of specific individuals. Finally, you can use agencies like Mable, HireUp, or Karista to find providers for hire.
Providers are one piece of your support team puzzle. Plan managers such as All Disability are also valuable additions to your NDIS team. We help you with all the financial aspects of your NDIS plan, from budgeting and planning to invoicing and payments.
We work with both providers and participants for a smooth experience. Best of all, our services come at no extra cost to NDIS participants - it’s all included in your NDIS plan.
Contact us today to get started.
Watch one of our members, Braydon, talking about his NDIS journey and how he’s achieving his goals: