social purpose sector: it’s both a market and a movement, made up of some of Australia’s most innovative and inspiring social changemakers and is estimated to be worth $510bn per annum. It’s also an industry underpinned by a culture of self-sacrifice and systemic overwhelm, with these same innovative social changemakers experiencing widespread burnout and almost half of the sector reporting they are often or always stressed and anxious.

Statistics show that social disadvantage in Australia is alive and well. Inequality – particularly, the gap between the rich and the poor – has significantly increased in the years between 1995 and 2010. The social purpose sector exists to solve these problems for Australians, yet, those working in the sector are experiencing burnout at greater levels than ever. Funding and budget constraints, government fluctuations, the ever-changing pandemic landscape and lack of access to support, resources and expertise are just some of the challenges facing those in the social purpose sector. More than 80% of social purpose sector businesses are small, without the budget to access support and advice and without the exposure to have their challenges recognised on a larger scale.

Born from a deep desire to recognise and respond to the sectors largely unseen struggles, visionary sector specialist Julia Keady drew upon her 12+ years of social impact sector experience to create and cultivate The Xfactor Collective. The Collective is a community of social changemakers combining to support each other and ultimately, the sector, in facilitating impactful social change. Underpinning the name “X-factor”, Julia refers to that “fire in the belly” phenomenon that unites social changemakers, regardless of the cause they fight for or the social condition they seek to change – a shared value system uniting those who take action to create change.

The Xfactor Collective is pioneering a social purpose sector “support on demand” model; an Australian-first integration of social changemakers for social changemakers. Founder Julia Keady has brought together a collection of more than 50 multi-disciplinary specialist consultants and professional services, with more than 100 simple “packaged”, fixed priced and easy to understand solutions to meet the multi-faceted needs of the social sector.

The unique Concierge service is the central touch point for leaders in the social purpose sector to seek support, advice and collaboration; a channel that allows organisations to look for opportunities that work for them, choose the collaborators that align with their vision and actually help identify what it is that they need. Founder Julia Keady asserts her belief in the “power of ideas” and The Xfactor Collective’s Concierge channel reflects that belief, by meeting organisations where they are, in order to support their ideas from start to finish and everywhere in between. In the two years spanning 2019-2020, The Xfactor Collective team have engaged in more than 150 concierge conversations, building a trusted and reliable service solution for changemakers to support their journeys. Specialist Consultant members have a series of set networking and collaboration events they can join remotely every month, to share who they are and what they do, help others and ask for support and referral opportunities from other members.

A core driver of the Collective has been to meet the unique needs of the social purpose sector, underpinned by the team’s understanding of the challenges faced by organisations in this space and commitment to values of fairness, courage, care, respect and kindness. With that in mind, it’s recognised some organisations will not have the funding and budget for services and to meet the needs of these business leaders, the Collective have developed a library of video resources and delivered more than 30 webinars and live shows; providing access to expertise for all, leaving no changemaker behind.

With capacity building at it’s core, the Collective extends beyond its specialist service offering, with an additional charity arm. The Xfactor Collective’s registered charity, The Xfactor Collective Foundation, is the platform for the Collective’s research and development in the sector. Underpinned by concern for the wellbeing and resilience for the social purpose sector and its people, the Foundation’s first project was RESET 2020 – a large-scale research survey project seeking to understand the impact of Covid-19 on social purpose organisations and determine their needs to deliver the provision of support and advice to these organisations during the pandemic. RESET2020 was made possible by the support of Equity Trustees and all of the data and Insights compiled are available on the Seer platform. You can read about this research project in more detail here.

The Xfactor Collective specialists offer expertise in multiple specialisation areas, delivering services including consulting, coaching/mentoring, outsourced teams, education and training. Our very own expert, Seer Data and Analytics Co-Founder, Kristi Mansfield, features within the reputable rolodex of The Xfactor Collective specialists, with Seer’s services recognised as fundamental to facilitating change, supporting changemakers and positively impacting the social purpose sector. If you are working in the sector, we highly recommend you consider joining the collective. Why go it alone when there is a supportive and positive network of sector specialists waiting to meet you?

With The Xfactor Collective, the social purpose sector is #strongertogether