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A guide on how to choose a DES provider that best suits you

Firstly, what is a Disability Employment Service (DES) provider?

Providers of Disability Employment Services are called DES Providers. 

DES providers help people with an injury, illness, or disability to find and keep a job.

They support participants to get ‘job ready’ and then connect them with suitable prospective employers.

After participants secure employment, the provider will continue supporting them to maintain this employment.

It’s important to note: All DES participants have the option to choose and change providers if their current provider isn’t meeting their needs.

Check out the DES eligibility criteria or learn more about how to register.

5 things to look for in a DES provider

1. You are supported and understood

A good Disability Employment Services provider will listen and support you. This is without a doubt the most important factor when considering which provider to choose.

Your provider needs to listen to you – to ensure they understand your background, needs, barriers, and aspirations. Understanding your needs is how they will create the best job plan for you. A plan that is going to help you meet your goals.

If you’re not listened to, you’re not going to have a pleasant experience. The DES program was created to help you, it should feel that way.

2. A dedicated Jobs Advisor that believes in YOU         

You need a dedicated Jobs Advisor that’s in regular contact with you, and available when you need them. Someone supportive and non-judgemental who you’re able to build rapport with.

Your journey to finding meaningful employment might not be linear. There’s going to be ups and downs. So, it’s important that your Jobs Advisor is on your side and there to support you.

They should also be proactive. Things to consider: Are they looking for opportunities that suit you and can help you get ‘job ready’ – whether it’s employment, training, or community services?

3. Clear and consistent communication

Your DES provider must be great at communication. This is key. With all the changes that happen within the Employment industry, it’s important to have a provider who keeps you up to date.

Appointments and communication options should be offered in a flexible way, based on your circumstances.  Whether it’s face-to-face, over the phone or electronically.

Your experience and job search should be as easy as possible.

4. Connections and strong networks

It’s important for your DES provider to have a strong network of employers and community connections. This means you will have multiple options if your first choice doesn’t work out.

A strong network usually correlates to a good reputation, and a good reputation is determined by positive experiences from customers.

5. Transparency and honesty

A huge factor to consider when choosing the right provider, is whether they display integrity and transparency. To you and your potential employers.

Your DES provider is there to help you achieve your employment goals. You want them to be upfront with you.

If you feel your provider is withholding information from you, or not listening to you, there are plenty of other providers to choose from. You can switch at any time!

Do you want to talk to someone about the DES Program?

Call our friendly team on 1800 007 400 or fill out the Enquire Now form on this page.

How to join or change DES providers

How to find DES providers near me

The DES program gives participants flexibility and choice in the services they receive and how they receive them, with participants able to choose their preferred provider when they first enter the program. 

Some ways to choose the best DES provider include:

Word of mouth – Ask around your networks! Whether positive or negative, people tend to relay their experiences to others.

Internet Search – Google DES providers in your area! This option gives you the chance to check reviews and also visit a company’s website to learn more about its values, services, and community involvement.

DES star ratings –The Australian Government’s Department of Social Services releases quarterly performance ratings for all providers. The DES Star Rating system measures the relative success of providers in achieving longer-term employment outcomes for participants.

Jobseach website – The Australian Government lists all DES providers for your area on the Jobsearch website. You can access a list of local providers by visiting their ‘Find a Provider’ page.

Want to choose ETC as your DES provider? Find out if we have an ETC office near you >

How to switch DES Providers

The Disability Employment Services Program makes it easy for you to choose who you would like to help you to find meaningful work that supports your injury, illness or disability.

If you’re unhappy with the services you are receiving, you can change their provider at any time by calling the National Customer Service Line on 1800 805 260.

Participants can change their provider five times, no questions asked, during their time in the program.

If you would like to discuss your current situation, contact our specialist team, or if you feel you meet all of the eligibility criteria you can register directly with us.


Do you want to talk to one of our DES specalists?

Call our friendly team on 1800 007 400 or fill out the Enquire Now form on this page.



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