Rehab Management Holdings
2019 Innovation Name: BusyBeans Program – Bigger Than Coffee
Awards: 8th Most Innovative Health Industries Company
BusyBeans is a social enterprise initiative that gives people with a moderate intellectual disability, on the Autism Spectrum, training and support as workplace baristas. Adults with Autism face discrimination and are under-represented in the mainstream workforce. Challenges that even high-functioning people with Autism face include difficulty concentrating, understanding social interactions and dealing with change. In small groups at ‘coffee schools’ across Australia, our participants receive job readiness and customer service training from qualified barista trainers. Participants are then placed with supportive businesses for paid full-time employment. Workplaces are provided with their barista, a coffee machine and a tablet with our custom-designed app to process orders and notify staff when their coffee is ready.
We provide personalised support and coaching before and during the work placement to build confidence and skills. Baristas are not placed into public, customer-facing roles (ie cafes, restaurants), eliminating time pressures and handling money. BusyBeans allows employers to access a talent pool of highly committed, loyal job seekers. It challenges perceptions, improves workplace relationships and meets community needs – all while enabling employers to experience diversity and fulfil their corporate social responsibilities (CSR). The BusyBeans program has created an innovative employment market through redirecting office expenditure in cafes.