Hope yet for Workways employees

The chief executive of employment organisation Workways Australia says he is “very confident” local staff will be offered “ongoing employment in the sector” in the wake of a major contract loss.

Thirteen offices across Gippsland, including 20 staff in the Latrobe Valley, were thrown into limbo this week after Workways was unsuccessful in its bid to provide the Federal Government’s ‘jobactive’ program in Victoria and New South Wales.

In a statement, Workways chief executive Bryan McCormick described the tender process as the “most competitive since employment services were outsourced by the Federal Government in 1997”.

“The sad thing for Workways is we are losing some highly-valued staff who have provided first class support to unemployed people and employers in regional areas over many years,” he said.

However, Mr McCormick told The Express yesterday Workways had been approached by incoming providers to effectively take over the running of Workways offices and retain their existing staff.

“They’ve (staff have) got employment through to 30 June and I would expect most of them would be offered ongoing employment with a new provider,” Mr McCormick said.

“There’s normally an agreement reached between providers and they settle on a date where transition would take place, shortly prior to the start of a new contract.”

Successful employment organisations who will provide the jobactive program to the Latrobe Valley are Mission Australia, Sureway and Max Employment.

Workways has operated for 25 years and started in Bairnsdale.

Through the tender, it was successful in gaining new business in Queensland.