Social enterprise works.
The Payment By Outcomes trial is the first of its kind in Australia. The Department of Social Services is partnering with White Box Enterprises and 16 social enterprises to measure the effectiveness of jobs-focused social enterprises in creating long-term meaningful employment for people who face barriers to work.
The trial specifically focuses on individuals living with a disability or those eligible for the Community Development Program, who have been out of work for at least nine of the last 12 months.
Social enterprises are being paid for the first time for job outcomes they create at six, 12 and 18 months. These payments are designed to cover the costs of wrap-around supports.
First year results of the trial show that social enterprises are effective in creating meaningful employment with retention rates at 86%, well above the predicted rate of 62%.
Further research undertaken by White Box shows how social enterprise compares to existing Disability Employment Services (DES) with a social enterprise outperforming on retention, individual earnings and cost savings to government. The full report is available below.
Retention rates: social enterprise v Disability Employment Services (Taylor Fry report, June 2023)
The positive ripple effects
Aisha* is a 31-year-old woman who while using Employment Service Providers, spent years completing training courses and volunteering at Vinnies for retail work experience. As an epileptic person, she was often sick and not confident to travel on her own. Now part of the Green Collect team, Aisha's health condition has improved, she enjoys upskilling at work, and her ambition is to become a team leader.
“The people here are so caring. They understand what your mental health is.”
– Aisha*, Green Collect.
Data reports including CSI's First Year evaluation and Taylor Fry's report can be found below.
First year results of the trial
As at 30 June 2023, there were 102 participants who re/entered work and enrolled in the PBO Trial.
participants are in
award-wage employment with a social enterprise
transitioned to mainstream employment
higher than the predicted retention rate of 62%
individuals have left
participating social enterprises
Of the 102 participants:
are aged 18-29 years
the percentage of
females to males
live in a major city
– 15.7% live in
Average fortnightly income earned by participants working with a social enterprise
have been earned*
*13-fortnights working with a social enterprises and earning at least $513 per fortnight,
and/or 13-fortnights working with a competitive employer and earning at least $855 per fortnight).
Our mission at White Box is to mainstream social enterprise.
To do this we’re building our case with data so our country’s key decision makers can see just how valuable social enterprises are to individuals, our communities and the economy.
Participating social enterprises
This is the third PBO trial launched under the Australian Government’s Social Impact Investing Initiatives, however the first involving impact investors. A special thanks to Macquarie Group Foundation, Tripple and Hand Heart Pocket Foundation, the trial would not have been possible without your support.
1/309 North Quay, Brisbane 4000
PO Box 590, Fortitude Valley 4006
Cremorne Jobs Hub
Building 3, 658 Church St,
Richmond, VIC, 3121
Social Enterprise District
– Mt Gravatt
1030 Cavendish Rd,
Mount Gravatt 4122
White Box is always on the lookout for people that have social enterprise in their blood. We don’t have any positions open at the moment but we are always recruiting. Find out more.
Acknowledgement of Country
We are proud to work with social enterprises all over Australia. We acknowledge and pay our respects to the Traditional Owners of the land we work and live on, recognising that Sovereignty was never ceded. We pay our respects to the First People of this country, their culture and Elders past, present and emerging.