In recent years there has been an increase in professional development opportunities for healthcare assistants. But what about those who want to pursue a more administrative career path? INsite looks at the exciting new business and management qualifications that are specifically relevant to the health and aged care setting.

Naomi Nailer is keen to pursue Careerforce’s new Level 6 business qualification, the Diploma in Leadership and Management for the Social, Health and Hygiene sectors.

“I think it is really needed,” she says, “Lots of places offer management qualifications, but there is nothing specific to the aged care setting.”

Nailer also thinks the Level 5 and 6 courses really reflect the fact that they are working at the front-line within a service industry.

“I think people forget that we are offering a service, not just a rest-home/hospital environment. When you take into consideration what we are offering residents, it is just like a hotel or motel. We are offering more than just a bed, or a meal, or assistance with cares – we are offering an entire service and the residents are our customers,” she says.

Nailer is excited about the prospect of gaining a qualification that is relevant to her position as village manager of Springlands Lifestyle Village. Having come from a background in banking where she progressed from teller to bank manager, Nailer is well-versed in general management.

When she first took the Springlands role six years ago, she soon discovered that many of her skills were transferable; dealing with sales, staff management, auditing and finance were all familiar territory for her. However, other aspects, like clinical management, were completely foreign.

Nailer has a clinical manager who ably fills this gap, and she says the organizational set-up “works very well”.

But the chance to gain unique management expertise in the healthcare setting was an opportunity too good to miss, and Nailer hopes to begin the diploma when it is released later this year.

Industry training organization Careerforce developed the Level 5 and 6 leadership and management qualifications with managers like Nailer in mind – those who have transferred from other industries and those who have worked up the ladder. It sees the diploma as a way of recognizing their skills and experience.

“We are ensuring that everyone who is part of the system is recognised, supported and has an opportunity to upskill,” says Gill Genet, Careerforce’s General Manager, Business Development. “We asked employer what managers and leaders needed and built these competencies into the training programmes.”

“Some people are more inclined to lead,” adds Careerforce chief executive Ray Lind. “The new business leadership and management programmes will give healthcare and support work staff another career pathway option.”

“It will build on their existing knowledge to manage and lead their team to become more effective, efficient and cohesive,” says Lauren van Costello, Careerforce Product Manager.

The programme will introduce tools and strategies of modern business practice to allow managers to adapt them into their own workplace setting. The diploma is expected to be released in the third quarter of this year.

The diploma will likely become the coveted qualification at the top of the ladder – but what about those who are at the earlier stages of their career and wish to pursue a business, administrative or management pathway within the healthcare industry?

The recently released Level 3 and Level 4 business administration and technology qualifications are the perfect starting point for office administrators, or healthcare assistants who want to pursue a different pathway to that which they started out on. The beauty of these qualifications is that they can be completed on-the-job, with no need for time away from work.

“Administration staff are often overlooked when considering training and development for employees,” says van Costello. “In response to demand for a qualification for administration and reception staff, Careerforce have developed a workplace training programme designed to respect and recognise these staff.”

Ray Lind echoes these sentiments.

“Administration staff, supervisors and managers at all levels contribute to improved health and wellbeing outcomes,” says Lind. “We want to support them in empowering their teams and leading them to achieve their objectives. We want to enable them in making the right decisions for their organisations through modern business practice tools and strategies. It is our hope that those decisions ultimately benefit the clients who are often the most vulnerable in society.”

The business administration and management pathway

Certificate in Business Administration and Technology for the Social, Health and Hygiene sectors (Level 3)

A qualification for your reception and administration staff.

Overview:The aim of this programme is to support reception and administration staff to expand their knowledge and skills within their role. It is designed for administration staff  who work under limited supervision and within a team; and for those experienced and new to the role.

Certificate in Business (First Line Management) for the Social, Health and Hygiene sectors (Level 4)

Strengthen the leadership skills of your first line managers.

Overview: The aim of this programme is to support staff in first line management roles to expand their knowledge and leadership skills. This programme supports team leaders and supervisors with limited management experience to develop key leadership skills including managing relationships, motivating a team and conflict resolution. This programme is also for staff who are looking to develop their leadership skills for future career development, and new to their role

Expected release: First quarter 2017.

Diploma in Leadership and Management for the Social, Health and Hygiene sectors (Level 5)

Develop a high performing management team.

Overview: This programme is for managers responsible for ensuring the smooth running of organisational operations. They understand the strategy of your organisation and manage the operational responsibilities of their team to achieve this strategy.

Expected release: Third quarter 2017

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