Kathy is the twentieth Audiology Partner to join Specsavers and will operate out of our Lavington, Albury and Wodonga stores.
1. Tell us a bit about your background.
Prior to joining Specsavers, an interest in Indigenous culture and social justice took me to the Northern Territory where I was employed within the NT Department of Health as a Hearing Health Program Leader.
My role was to create strategies and policies for leadership around all their hearing health programs with a particular focus on Indigenous children in remote communities.
I worked on preventable hearing loss underpinned by the socioeconomic status of the environments of these children. There were a lot of system and program challenges so I went through a reform process to integrate care pathways to maximise outcomes for these children.
2. Thinking about previous roles and years in the industry as a backdrop, what prompted you to join Specsavers?
I had been looking for a change in direction for my career, hoping to be based locally and get back into clinical services. Mostly I was keen to get back into hearing aids, audiology clinical work and working with older people.
What really attracted me to Specsavers was the joint venture partnership where you’re able to build your own business with the support of Specsavers behind you, reducing the risk that would be there if you set up your own business independently.
Specsavers’ ethics and values also really resonated with me as did their strong transparency on pricing. I was aware of questionable practices elsewhere in the hearing aid industry and as a previous Specsavers optical customer, I had confidence in the professional service and quality of service that would be delivered in the audiology business.
3. Having joined, can you describe your thoughts about Specsavers Audiology and the role it will play in the industry?
I’ve had plenty of friends and colleagues praise Specsavers’ approach to optometry and say what an excellent brand it is, synonymous with customer excellence.
I think they will achieve the same reputation in audiology, setting the benchmark and if others don’t follow they will find themselves no longer being viable in the long run.
4. What is Specsavers Audiology’s approach to professionalism and clinical practice?
It’s clear that Specsavers is customer-focused. With the quality of products available, the prices of those products, the processes and the support around the audiology business, Specsavers is the customer champion. If you take care of the customers’ needs, everything else will take care of itself. That appears to be a core value and at the heart of everything at Specsavers.
5. What would you say to audiology professionals considering a JVP with Specsavers?
I would say that it is a wonderful opportunity and it offers a brilliant career pathway and makes excellent business sense.
6. Why is a JVP with Specsavers a good model for audiology?
Specsavers has really set a new standard of exceptional clinical quality and value-for-money products with the customer front and centre. Because there hasn’t been a major player who has drawn this line in the sand, Specsavers will get noticed.
With Specsavers being such a big organisation, other hearing aid providers will need to adapt if they want to be seen as a viable choice for hearing care.