The New Employment Model (NEM) is a huge opportunity for Aruma's Supported Employees. Here are the answers to some frequently asked questions about NEM.

The New Employment Model for Supported Employment

The National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) has announced a new price guide for 2020-2021 for your NDIS supports and a new funding model for employment.

Aruma’s transition to the New Employment Model (NEM) is a huge opportunity for all Supported Employees to reach their goals with increased training opportunities and other individualised supports in the workplace.

These new prices started on the July 1, 2020. You can find more information on the NDIS website.


Each person’s plan is different, and the new prices will affect your plan in a different way to others.

  • Under the previous systems, the funding for employment supports was in the Capacity Building Budget of your NDIS plan, and were called ‘Finding and Keeping a Job’
  • The funding amounts previously put in place were not based on individual support needs
  • The New Employment Model (NEM) aims to fund specific employment supports to meet your goals and aspirations, giving you greater choice and control over your workplace supports
  • The NEM means that funding for workplace supports will be more flexible, and you will have more control over your funding
  • The funds are now called ‘Supports in Employment’ and these sit under your core supports.

Service agreements are signed at either:

  • The start of employment
  • Start of a new NDIS Plan
  • Any other relevant changes made by you, Aruma or the NDIS.

The changes to the pricing and the new line items mean that you will need to sign a new Service Agreement and a new Schedule of Supports with Aruma.

Please be aware that this will take time. We need to talk to each supported employee at Aruma so that everyone understands their new agreements.

We will work with you to move over to the new funding model when your next NDIS plan comes up for review.

There will be no change to your current work contract or employment supports due to NEM if you have a current agreement in place that was signed before the July 1 changes. We will speak to you once your NDIS plan is up for review.

Aruma will use the employment supports funding to provide one-to-one and group-based supports.

Support includes things like:

  • Learning new work skills
  • Direct supervision by Aruma staff
  • Off-the-job training sessions
  • Arranging non-face-to-face supports like report writing, developing task breakdowns, or creating individualised support tools
  • In some areas, providing transport to and from your home or work.

A Schedule of Supports will be developed with you by Aruma’s Employment Coordinator and your Business staff.

The Schedule of Supports talks about the:

  • Frequency of support – how many days a week you work
  • Intensity of support – the support from Aruma staff that you receive during your work day.

A Schedule of Supports is when we work out what your typical pattern of support in the workplace is over a 12-week period. This program means we can claim a weekly amount of funding from your plan for delivering supports in employment over a 12-week period.

Towards the end of the 12 weeks, your Aruma staff will have a conversation with you to discuss if any changes are needed to the agreed Schedule of Supports.

The New Employment Model will give you more choice and control over your work life.

At your next NDIS Plan review meeting, the NDIS Planners or Local Area Coordinators (LAC) will ask you some questions:

  1. Where do you work?
  2. What jobs do you do?
  3. How many hours do you work each week?
  4. What support do you get at work?
  5. What new skills do you want to learn at work?
  6. What other jobs would you like to try?

Aruma will work with you to get the information needed for your next NDIS Plan review meeting, and that you have the information to answer these questions about workplace supports at Aruma.

Under the previous system, the funding for employment supports was in the Capacity Building budget of an NDIS plan. These funding amounts didn’t cover the costs of employment supports already provided to you. The New Employment Model (NEM) aims to make up this short-fall, and fund specific employment supports to meet your goals and aspirations.

This means that future NDIS plans may see a higher amount for employment supports, but this will depend on each person’s circumstances, goals, aspirations and support needs.

Currently Aruma is using the NDIS’ transitional funding arrangements in the NDIS price guide, as we work with each employee to move over to NEM. This means that employment support invoicing stays the same and is based on a weekly fee for now.

For employees who are due to change over to their new NDIS plans now, the NEM employment supports will be funded by an hourly rate. Aruma will need to move to charging hourly-based employment supports for all supported employees before January 2022.

Aruma expects the New Employment Model will result in better outcomes for Supported Employees, with greater choice and control over your career and more resources available to you to achieve your employment goals.

No, it won’t. The money provided for workplace supports from a NDIS Plan is separate to your DSP and the wages you are paid for your work.

That’s not necessary, but where you as an NDIS participant choose to work, and who you engage to provide workplace supports is your choice. However, the changes to funding supports apply across the disability employment sector – all employment support funding will change to the new model, regardless of the chosen employer.

We hope so! We will continue to provide employment supports if you choose to work at Aruma as a Supported Employee, and you have the funding to support your career goals.

Under the New Employment Model there is potential for working hours to change. This can be discussed with the staff at Aruma and is based on each person’s support needs, their NDIS budget for employment supports and the needs of the Business.

NDIS funding budgets may increase in other areas, if you name goals that are reasonable and necessary. It’s important that you discuss with your Planner or LAC your goals and aspirations and the level of support you require, to ensure the right level of funding is provided.

Your Aruma Supervisor or Employment Coordinator will provide you with a letter of support to take to your next NDIS planning meeting.

Your NDIS planner will want current information about your employment supports, so please give us at least two weeks’ notice to allow us to prepare your letter of support properly.

Your NDIS Planner will want to know how often you work and what kind of support you get from your staff at work. This is called the intensity and frequency of support and will be covered in your support letter.

If you have any questions or are worried about how this affects you, please talk to your Supervisor or Employment Coordinator.

Our Aruma Customer Service Team are available to take your enquiry and help you get the answers you need. Just give them a call or send them an email.

Customer service
1300 538 746

Please let them know where you work so your Employment Coordinator can contact you directly to discuss and answer any questions.