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issue thirteen july 2008

EDGE steps into a new partnership

In April 2008 EDGE signed an agreement with The Australian Employer’s Network on Disability to facilitate its highly successful Stepping into . . . program - a unique paid internship program for university students with disability.

Stepping into . . . provides participating students with four weeks’ paid work experience within a professional organisation, assisting them to develop their technical and professional skills and to gain practical, hands-on experience in their chosen field.

The program was launched by the Australian Employers’ Network on Disability, with the initial program "Stepping into Law" commencing in 2005 and running in Sydney only. Since then the program has gone from strength to strength and been extended to more disciplines. The Australian Employers’ Network on Disability has now expanded the program from Sydney to Melbourne, Brisbane, Canberra, Adelaide and Perth.

EDGE has been approached to be its Western Australian partner. In 2008 Stepping into . . . will include:

  • Stepping into Law;
  • Stepping into Banking;
  • Stepping into Accounting;
  • Stepping into Human Resources;
  • Stepping into Information Technology.

Participating employers include the Department of Defence, Westpac, ANZ, KPMG, Merrill Lynch, Qantas, the Australian Tax Office, Freehills, the NSW Attorney General’s Department, Baker & McKenzie, Henry Davis York, RailCorp NSW and Telstra.

With Australia in the grips of significant skills shortages, it is increasingly important for employers to develop barrier-free recruitment processes so that talented people with disability who are looking for employment are not (directly or indirectly) discriminated against.

Participating employers learn to:

  • Recognise barriers in their recruitment processes;
  • Successfully recruit from the entire talent pool;
  • Improve the quality of application, interviewing and selection processes;
  • Build expertise in implementing workplace adjustments for people with disability;
  • Develop barrier-free work environments;
  • Meet their diversity and Corporate Social Responsibility objectives simply by providing equitable employment opportunities for people with disability.

More help for school leavers with disability

EDGE Employment Solutions has been awarded all three National Disability Coordination Officer positions in Western Australia. The NDCO Program aims to assist people with a disability to move successfully between school, vocational education and training (VET) and university, to succeed in their chosen studies and to secure suitable employment.

The current NDCO, Trevor Paterson, is joined by Nicole Cox and Kylie Rogers as the new NDCOs. All three operate from Perth can be contacted on 9286 6600 or by emailing:

The National Disability Co-ordination Officer Program is a national initiative funded by the Australian Government Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations.

EDGE increases Patersons’ stocks

Jonathon Lander with Karen Hawkins .

Patersons Securities is Australia’s largest independently owned, specialist stockbroker, providing a wide range of financial services from stockbroking and financial planning to investment banking and institutional dealing.

The firm, which is 100% owned by management and staff, now has more than 280 employees in ten offices throughout Australia including Sydney, Melbourne, Perth, Brisbane, Canberra and five regional centres.

Patersons approached EDGE at the start of 2008 to fill their office junior role. Patersons’ human resource team met several applicants put forward by EDGE and eventually hired Jonathon Lander. Working in partnership, Patersons and EDGE staff have assisted Jon to successfully hold down a full-time job in the corporate world.

"Jon has been working with us as an Office Assistant for four months and during that time has proven to be a valuable member of our staff. He is conscientious, methodical and dedicated to his job. But more importantly, he is such a pleasure to work with", said Patersons’ Client Relations Officer, Karen Hawkins.

"It is rewarding to see his confidence grow and his relationships with his co-workers developing. Our experience with EDGE has been most rewarding, not only in having Jon work with us, but for the support that EDGE have provided along the way. I cannot recommend them highly enough," Karen said.

Careertips: start here . . .

Careertips website has the information and resources to get your careers on track.

EDGE has developed a web-based information and resource guide for school leavers, TAFE students and university students with disability. Careertips is designed to help people with disability get their careers on track from the outset by helping to clarify what they would like to do in the future, what courses would best assist them to secure later employment in their chosen career, how to access and successfully complete those courses, and how to get the job they want after they graduate.

Many other people and services can help students with disability to achieve their study and career goals. Careertips also has sections for career counsellors, lecturers, disability support staff, disability employment agencies, mentors and prospective employers.

Careertips is a practical, up-to-date and easy-to-read guide that has received thousands of hits since it launch four years ago, has earned plaudits from around Australia and has been incorporated into the curricula of a number school programs around the nation.

EDGE’s Managing Director recognized as a Woman of Influence

Woman of Influence Award presented to Sue Robertson.

The List Inspire Awards, sponsored by SGIO, Chevron, Curtin School of Marketing, Kailis and Lunch Box Lunch List recognise Western Australian business women "doing extraordinary things and providing inspiration in workplaces and communities across the State."

The Managing Director of EDGE Employment Solutions, Sue Robertson, was recognised as an "inspiring woman in a key leadership role in the community" and was presented the Woman of Influence Award at the event held on the 30th May at the Hyatt.

In the presentation speech, Sue was described as "a powerful and persuasive spokesperson for the rights and abilities of people with disabilities to work effectively in open employment. Her compelling business case, backed by the track record of thousands of people with disabilities she has placed, has seen EDGE develop long term partnerships with most of WA’s, and a number of Australia’s, biggest employers. In driving home her message she has assembled a corporate Board that would be the envy of any major company in the State, all of whom give their time freely. She regularly speaks publicly on her strategy and vision."

Copyright © 2002 EDGE Employment Solutions Inc. - All Rights Reserved. No part of this newsletter may be reproduced in whole or in part without written permission. All guest articles are copyright to their respective owners and are reproduced with permission.

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