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A Day in the Life of Senior Consultant Rachael Kennedy

People Stories 30 Nov 2023

What exactly does an Accredited Exercise Physiologist do in a day as a KINNECT Senior Consultant? To find out, we spoke to Rachael Kennedy who has been with KINNECT for two and a half years as an Occupational Rehabilitation Consultant in Cairns. On a daily basis, Rachael draws on her clinical knowledge and expertise, project management and communication skills to work with clients for a variety of KINNECT’s services. In this article, Rachael tells us what her role looks like.


About Rachael


  • What is your working background?

I came to KINNECT shortly after finishing university. Initially I worked for a different occupational health company for around four months but wasn’t enjoying my time there. It was a small team, and I didn’t have a team manager accessible in my clinic – we were tucked away In someone else’s office.

I went to university with Megan Rose (current Gold Coast Team Manager) who had been recruited to KINNECT. She told me about a Senior Rehabilitation Consultant role that was available and encouraged me to apply. I had a phone chat with the Team Manager at the time, which turned into an interview, and then I was offered the position.


  • What’s your favourite thing about working at KINNECT?

I like the variety of my role, being able to do pre-employment assessments, and work on the occupational claims side and the projects side of things.

The best thing is being able to go onsite to see clients. I’ve been to sugar mills, a fire station at the airport, a coal mine. It’s the only job that I can think of that allows you to see these environments without being contracted to work there yourself.

I love the culture of the company. I’ve played a large role in the culture myself as the Kulture Captain – it’s something I’m quite passionate about. I’ve had other jobs where the culture is horrible because they just employ anyone. At KINNECT the interview process is specific so they can consider if a person has a good personality fit when they hire.

Rachael Kennedy & the Cairns Team

Working in an awesome team helps, too. Recently I had a bad morning at home, but I knew that at work I’d be surrounded by people I enjoy spending time with, and it made my day better.


  • What do you hope to achieve at KINNECT?

I don’t aspire for advancement now, but I’d love to take on more responsibility with client relationship management, particularly with some of the bigger clients like government departments where I’ve built up great relationships with people. I’m looking forward to going to Brisbane soon to meet with claims advisors from Local Government WorkCare and Workcover Queensland who I speak to a lot to continue our relationship and grow our business. I’d like to tap more into my skills in that area.

I participated in the Emerging Leaders Program (ELP) this year. The ELP is a big eye opener as to why KINNECT is how it is, and how we do what we do so well. It gives you a different perspective of leadership and how to empower the people you are around, even if you aren’t a leader. Even being the Kulture Captain, you’re not there to direct, you’re there to empower everyone around you.


  • Do you have any advice for people looking to follow a similar career path?

We recently had a new starter who came on board with six years of clinical experience, and we talked about working in the clinical world where people don’t speak highly about occupational health as it’s not treatment based. My advice though is to give it a go. When you’re working in a clinic you’re bound to the same four walls, whereas with occupational health you get to travel around. I’ve been as far as Cooktown, Bamaga and Collinsville – places that I wouldn’t have gone before but work has given me the opportunity.

You’ll be amazed at what you’ll do, too. We do everything from manual handling training, pre-employment medicals and functional assessments, to claims management, job dictionaries, physical conditioning services and functional capacity evaluations.


A day in the life of a Senior Consultant

This was one of three project days where I went to MSF Sugar Mills in Gordonvale and South Johnson to collect information to help me create a manual handling training program.

While some of the program contains standard information that everyone needs to understand, it’s more engaging and digestible when there are workplace health and safety statistics, photos from their workplace and when the training is tailored to their own jobs.


I hopped into the car early for a drive to the Gordonvale site. There I met with their safety teams to confirm what they were looking for on the day and how it was going to run.

I was then handed over to various team managers and superintendents to identify key functional components and injury concerns in their teams.


To collect information, I put my steel cap boots, high vis vest and hard hat on and went into the mill site to investigate a range of job roles. I took photos and spoke to the workers about their key concerns about fatigue and injury, what they thought the hardest part of their job was and asked them to demonstrate what they do.

Then it was back in the car to drive home. When I went back to the office later that week, I started preparing the training that we’ll deliver between February and June 2024.


What else do our Accredited Exercise Physiologists (AEPs) do?

Our AEPs undertake a broad range of activities, such as:

Workplace Assessments

  • Conducting detailed assessments in wide-ranging environments, which includes a detailed review of the requirements of the role against current function, with the provision of education i.e. pro-active self-management, pain control, health literacy etc.
  • Identifying and solving problems to address biopsychosocial risk factors.
  • Developing Recover at Work Plans.

Medical Case Conferences

  • Facilitating open and transparent recovery and return to work planning with NTD, NTS, THP, Employers.

Functional Capacity Evaluations (in clinic or onsite at the Employer)

  • Conducting comprehensive musculoskeletal assessments to match functional capacity to job demands.

Case Management

  • Collecting THP updates from fellow AEPs, Physiotherapists, Psychologists etc.
  • Giving meaningful updates to all stakeholders on recovery progress.

Injury Prevention 

  • Conducting manual handling training, pre-employment assessments, ergonomic assessments and more!


If you’re interested in a role where no two days are the same, why not join us? For information about current vacancies, visit our Careers Centre.