Managing the administrative and financial side of the NDIS is a stressful and time-consuming process. This is why many NDIS participants choose plan management. This option eases the burden of self-management. It also ensures more choice and control – when working with a Plan Manager, participants can access both NDIS registered and non-registered providers.
Plan Management requires that the participant select a professional NDIS registered Plan Manager as a partner in their NDIS journey. So, what does a Plan Manager actually do day-to-day?
What are a Plan Manager’s responsibilities?
A Plan Manager takes care of the administrative and financial obligations of the NDIS on behalf of the participant. Service providers directly invoice the Plan Manager for the participant’s services and the Plan Manager takes care of the rest. Their responsibilities include:
● Managing and allocating the budget in line with the participant’s NDIS plan
● Suggesting service providers
● Helping negotiate to price with service providers
● Paying service providers on time
● Liaising with the NDIS on the participant’s behalf
● Maximizing outcomes from funding
● Financial reporting and record-keeping
● Financial and administrative compliance to ensure the participant is meeting their obligations under the NDIS
How are Plan Managers qualified?
One of the drawcards of working with a Plan Manager is that they are experienced, financial managers. Often they will be qualified in accounting or finance. They are skilled in budget management and financial reporting.
How can participants access a Plan Manager?
To partner with a Plan Manager, participants must include plan management in their NDIS plan. The Plan Manager will then be funded through the participant’s NDIS funding at no extra cost to the participant.
What should participants look for in a Plan Manager?
For a participant to trust a Plan Manager with their NDIS funding is a significant undertaking. That’s why it’s so important that participants select the right Plan Manager for them. Every participant will have different needs but here are some things participants may want to look out for in a Plan Manager:
● They take the time to understand the participant’s NDIS plan inside and out
● They are qualified and knowledgeable
● They come recommended and/or have received positive feedback
● They are responsive and in regular contact with the participant
● They are an active not passive partner in the process
● They continually look for ways to extract more value from funding and make the most of the participant’s NDIS plan
● They upskill the participant in financial and organizational requirements and provide training when required
Ultimately the participant must have a good relationship with their Plan Manager, feel that they can trust them and that they are on the same page when it comes to their NDIS plan. A good Plan Manager will always put the needs of the participant first, cut through the clutter and help participants get the most value from their NDIS plan.
By Raheel Chaudhry,
Director, RMC Plan Managers