Case Studies
Australia Post

Learn how a brand new approach to preventing workplace psychological injuries delivers outstanding results

The relationship between physical health and mental health has been researched extensively and is now well understood. Read how we were able to dramatically improve return to work outcomes for one of Australia’s most culturally and geographically diverse organisations.
A powerful and effective approach to managing physical injuries where psychological factors are extending recovery time

Australia Post


Transport Postal and Warehousing


80,000+ Employees

Issue / Objective:

Improve mental health outcomes for injured workers


Returned to full pre-injury hours 51 days (40%) more quickly
46% decrease in depressive symptoms
34% decrease in Orebro Pain Score



Australia Post is one of Australia’s largest and most culturally and geographically disbursed organisations.

Converge has a long-term partnership with Austalia Post. We provide a broad range of support and consulting services including a core employee assistance program, integrated onsite support at Australia Post’s contact and delivery centres, critical incident support nationally, onsite debriefing, professional supervision, as well as an extensive range of additional specialist assessments, conflict interventions, training and development.

It was through this long-term partnership that Converge was invited to participate in Australia Post’s Early Matched Care at Australia Post (EMCAP) program.

Research Context

An early research study, known as the ‘WISE Study’ was conducted by the University of Sydney, headed up by a lead researcher, Professor Michael Nicholas. The study found that preventing pain-related disability, coupled with increasing awareness and education of sufferers on quality of life and chronic pain, was vital to assist in achieving improved injury outcomes.

The Problem to be Solved

It has long been known there is a strong causal relationship between physical health and mental health. In 2019, Australia Post identified a strong correlation between the incidence of a primary physical injury and the development of a secondary psychological injury. Further, the data showed secondary psychological injuries are also associated with the length of time that injuries take to recover and claims resolved.

Australia Post elected to work with the University of Sydney to establish the research design to explore where a focused psychological intervention model of support would make a difference to injury and claim outcomes. A randomised control trial (RCT) was established. Australia Post then invited Converge to work with the intervention group in the research trial to deliver additional psychological support. The Early Matched Care Program (EMCAP) was born.

EMCAP had a range of objectives which included:

  • To reduce the incidence of injured workers developing secondary psychological illnesses and claims.
  • Provide early access to multidisciplinary care with a greater focus on psychological intervention for certain physical injuries where risk of secondary claims was deemed to be high.
  • For the treatment group to receive additional psychological support and pain management, which is where Converge’s team of psychologists were used.
  • Encourage earlier return to work rates and promotion of recovery in the workplace.
  • Promote the health benefits of work.
  • Improve workplace engagement and wellness metrics.

The Intervention Model

The RCT research design included an intervention group and control group. The control group received standard care. The intervention group received additional psychological services on top of  standard care.

Converge consultants worked with the intervention group only. Our team of psychologists worked in a multidisciplinary occupational rehabilitation model.

  • Each participant was able to access 6 counselling sessions with the potential of extension if outcomes had not been fully realised.
  • Clinicians utilised proven psychological treatment practices and pain management techniques.
  • The clinicians worked closely with general practitioners and physiotherapists and other members of the rehabilitation team.
  • Consultants utilised testing inventories to assess pain, functional progress over time and outcomes achieved.
  • Data capture and reporting was undertaken at the initial and last appointment.


The outcome data from the EMCAP research trial were compelling.  The intervention group experienced significantly more positive outcomes than the control group in a number of key regards:

  • demonstrably quicker return to work rates for injured employees who have participated in the study – an average 51 days earlier return to work than the matched control group
  • a 46% decrease in depressive symptoms when compared with the control group
  • a 40% reduction in mental health outcomes generally, and
  • a 34% decrease in their Orebro Pain Score.
  • Year 1 — trial with  120 participants, a calculated saving of $355,012 for the treatment group
  • Year 2 — a projected saving of over $4 million when fully rolled out across Australia Post.

Other impressive outcomes included:

  • A high engagement and participation rate in the program and improved quality of life reported.
  • Early identification of ‘at risk’ injured workers who were streamed for early referral f0r psychological and rehabilitation treatment.
  • Greater education and assistance for line managers in identifying mental health issues in the workplace and engaging effective support.
  • Positive impact on injured staff members’ level of engagement attributed to increased levels of support.

Australia Post has gone on to be win major awards for this exceptional research and support program with  the 2021 Comcare National Conference and Awards, and the 28th National Safety Awards of Excellence. Converge congratulate Australia Post on these achievements.

WorkReset — a new product for Converge

We have learned a great deal through working with Australia Post and the University of Sydney.

We have now refined our model for working with injured employees for whom there is a high level of risk of secondary psychological injury. We call our product WorkReset. Speak to one of our helpful team to learn more about it.

Employee at Australia Post
"The introduction of Converge EAP felt like a weight had been lifted not just from individual shoulders but the whole organisation."
Critical Incident Response
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