AXIS Employment Horsham has moved into a new building after almost three years of redevelopment.
Its new location is 9 Firebrace Street.
AXIS Employment is a disability employment service and is found across Victoria.
The agency bought the new building in 2014 with the hope of creating a bigger, modern home base.
General manager Collin Barnett said the agency had grown significantly since 2014.
“(Buying the building) was an opportunity to get something of our own. We thought it was a great opportunity to develop it to suit ourselves and to add to the aesthetics of the main street,” he said.
Monday marked the day everyone in the workplace moved into the new building.
The two-storey workplace is larger than the agency’s previous building, in McLachlan Street, and has plenty of natural sunlight bursting through the windows.
Corporate services manager Graeme Eldridge said managing the project and talking to architects about the design of the building was an enjoyable process.
“It was a good solid building but very run down.
“When we worked through some concepts and finally got a draft we liked … working our way through (the draft) and seeing what it is like today … it has been amazing,” he said.
Employment services manager Viv Watson said it had been a long and interesting process.
“There were a lot of learning curves for all of us.
“We have never done anything on this scale before, but when we look at the end result, (it’s) a beautiful building for all of our staff to come to work and have such a lovely environment to work in,” she said.
The new building will act as a head office for the employment agency in Western Victoria and south-east South Australia.
Mr Barnett said a change in the disability employment services program would be implemented in two years time.
This allows the agency some room for growth – not specifically in Horsham but throughout Western Victoria.
Mr Barnett said the agency would need to go through an application process to be able to grow within the region, and said he and the board saw this as an opportunity to help employment seekers in Western Victoria.
“We already provide outreach services to all the small towns (in the region). We’re (doing work) up to Mildura. One of our strengths is we do provide services to smaller areas,” he said.
The agency has a strong connection to the wider community and provides services which take AXIS employees to job seekers if they live in a smaller towns in the region.
Mr Eldridge said changing the landscape of disability employment was one aspect he was proud to navigate.
“When a lot of these services started out, they were either in houses or (had) very limited funding,” Mr Eldridge said.
“The change in that and to be able to present the facilities and services in the way that we do now has been one of the most satisfying things.”