EY insights helps community services industry

The community services industry is changing at an unprecedented pace, disrupting the way many organisations operate.

With the introduction of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) and changes to funding, now is the time to shift the focus of your business to build a sustainable future.

But how do you do this?

The team at Ernst & Young (EY) have a team dedicated to support organisations through change, using a proven framework and process.

Their EY.insight methodology has successfully helped other community service organisations refocus on their business, secure other avenues of funding and prepare for a new future.

During times of change, organisations and their leadership teams often have insight into their problems.

EY insight helps leadership teams reach consensus on their immediate priorities, creates accountability for taking action and unleashes the team to deliver results.

Most importantly, this team is different from other consultants as Operating Partner David Hewish explains.

“When we work with an organisation, our aim is to upskill their leadership team so that in the future they can tackle any issues as they arise,” David said.

“To do this, our experienced team support the leadership team to develop solutions and tools, as well as implement them.

“Our process is simple and gets to the heart of the issue. We use a carefully planned and researched online questionnaire completed by all the leadership team to start the process. This is analysed so we can take a deeper dive through interviews and workshops to identify key issues, opportunities and priorities. All of this is worked through our framework, to help with focus and solutions that build a better business for you.


Sunrise Way is a Drug and Alcohol Rehabilitation Centre in the heart of a regional city that is experiencing an increase in the use of the drug known as ice.

A private gift from a local family enabled Sunrise Way to establish and operate for three years. When the funding was coming to an end, CEO Wendy Agar needed to find a new revenue to support the delivery of their holistic drug and alcohol rehabilitation program.

With the support of her board, she sought a consultant that would help shape the package they needed for approaching potential funders. The EY team were the best fit to help her take her story, and what she wanted to achieve, and package it into a well-rounded document. Thanks to the work she did with the team, Wendy secured Queensland Government funding with the Health Minister attending the centre for the announcement.

“I had the bones of information, like a clearly laid out budget and understanding of the organisation, but what I needed help with was packaging it together,” Wendy said.

“I needed potential investors to know we understood our finances and what we were going to achieve in the clinical and business part of the organisation. I wanted them to know we were low risk and worth investing in.

“The process with the EY team was fantastic and they were able to pull different expertise from the wider organisation to support me.

“I spent a number of days locked away with two of the team so we could focus only on the development of the plan. I learnt so much and had access to all their resources,” Wendy said.

“They supported me to develop the business plan, guiding me along the way, which means that when I need to create the next one, I am confident to do it myself.

Wendy was able to use the budgets and planning work she had previously completed and put it into a marketable format that worked.

But that wasn’t all: “They showed me how to use the strongest data in the document too,” she said.

“The EY team also took the time to understand the heart of Sunrise Way, the passion at the heart of what we do and so we kept that through the business plan.“My board was so impressed with the format we have adopted it as our annual business plan structure,” Wendy said.

The final product that was delivered to the CEO was a draft business plan with 12-month case forecast. This document outlines:

  • The social need for the business
  • Transparency over the historical and future financials of the business
  • The operating model and strategy
  • Risks
  • Business resilience initiatives
  • Short to long term goals of the business
  • Resources required to achieve these goals.

Does this sound like something your organisation could use?

We are looking at developing a forum so you can understand the framework, ask questions and see how it could work for you. Email your expression of interest to [email protected]

Otherwise contact the team directly via David Hewish on (07) 3243 3777 or Lisa Hughes on (07) 3011 3170.