Independent Review of the Job Seeker Compliance Framework

The Independent Review of the Job Seeker Compliance Framework reported to Parliament on 30 September 2010.

The report acknowledged the framework had the broad support of welfare organisations and employment services providers and made some recommendations around further improvements.

The Government carefully considered the findings and recommendations of the review and is implementing a range of initiatives to further strengthen job seeker compliance.

The 2011-12 Budget provides $49.8 million over four years to implement a range of measures associated with the Independent Review of the Job Seeker Compliance Framework including $11.2 million to improve the operation of Comprehensive Compliance Assessments, $14.2 million to fund joint interviews between employment services providers and Centrelink with job seekers who are having difficulty meeting their requirements, $22.5 million to improve communication between Centrelink and providers on compliance matters through a greater degree of information shared between the IT systems as well as simplification of training material and guidelines and $1.9 million to align daily penalty amounts for short–term financial penalties.

These measures continue the Government’s focus on balancing the responsibilities for job seekers to demonstrate that they are looking for work or undertaking job preparation activities with providing opportunities and assistance which helps them improve their employment prospects.

The Government is also implementing other improvements to the job seeker compliance framework, such as regularly releasing clearer and more transparent data, conducting research on job seeker compliance, a review of a random sample of compliance cases and the re-estimation of the Job Seeker Classification Instrument.

In addition, the Government announced the review of remote participation and employment services ahead of the 2011-12 Budget.

A copy of the Report of the Independent Review of the Job Seeker Compliance Framework and a Summary of the Report is available.

Background to the Review of the Job Seeker Compliance Framework

In July 2009 the Government introduced a new job seeker compliance framework to support the operation of Job Services Australia. The legislation which gave effect to this new framework required the Government to establish an independent panel to review the impact of the new compliance arrangements after their first year of operation.

Terms of reference for the review were prescribed in the Social Security (Administration) Act (1999) (the relevant provision was repealed once the review was completed). The review panel was required to provide a written report to the Minister for public release and tabling in each House of the Parliament by 30 September 2010.