Discovery is a time limited process meant to assist an individual in uncovering his or her interests, aptitudes and preferences surrounding employment. The end result is a discovery profile, written by Housing Independence’s Certified Employment Specialist, which provides an outline for the job or types of jobs to be pursued during the next phase of job development.

When skills, interests or conditions for employment (need for unique schedules, locations, type of work, etc) are identified, the Employment Specialist will assist the job seeker in identifying what jobs match up with the job seeker’s ideal employment situation and will arrange visits to job sites for volunteering, observation or informational interviewing so the job seeker can aquire further information about what the job entails and whether he or she is interested in pursuing it further. Visits to various job sites will allow the Employment Specialist to observe the participant in new situations and help the participant make an informed choice regarding their interest in the given industry or position.

At the conclusion of the Discovery process, the Employment Specialist will prepare a Discovery Profile which will serve as a guide during job development by outlining the conditions needed in a job for the individual to be successful

Job Development

Housing Independence is a contracted vendor with Vocational Rehabilitation for job development; the process of helping individuals find and obtain jobs.

Depending on the type of job sought and the supports needed by the individual, job development can vary greatly. Some individuals may need assistance with filling out job applications for advertised openings, learning to present themselves well in an interview and determining how to request necessary accommodations. In other cases, individuals may not be a good fit for openly advertised jobs, and may utilize a job developer to communicate with employers on their behalf to create a new job which specifically utilizes their skills. For example, a person interested in working in a store stocking shelves but not cashiering may use a job developer to negotiate with an employer to create a unique position not generally hired for, that will serve the needs of both the jobseeker and the employer.

Job Coaching

After a job is secured through job development, Housing Independence offers job coaching to set the individual up for success in their new position.

Initially, job coaching is used to help an individual transition into their new job and understand training and expectations. Job coaches can attend training with the client and create systems to help the individual learn their new responsibilities and develop natural supports. This depends on the client’ s learning style, but might include written or picture schedules, hands on practice or verbal cues. Job coaches can also help clients communicate with their new managers, advocate on their behalf, and help managers and coworkers understand the client and how best to support them.

If an individual’s brokerage determines that they will need ongoing job coaching past the training period, Housing Independence offers long term supports. Depending on need, this can vary from weekly meetings with a job coach to problem solve to having a 1:1 job coach for all hours at the job site. Job coaches can assist clients with communicating with management, learn new tasks and provide ongoing supports to perform job tasks.