County of Alameda

Employment Counselor Trainee (#6783)

Bargaining Unit: SEIU 1021 - Social Workers (005)
$30.12-$35.95 Hourly / $2,259.00-$2,696.25 BiWeekly /
$4,894.50-$5,841.88 Monthly / $58,734.00-$70,102.50 Yearly

Under close supervision, to learn all phases of how to manage and counsel participants and facilitate and monitor their progress through an education, training and/or employment program system towards self-sufficiency; to conduct orientation and appraisals; to evaluate test results, determine a preliminary employment goal, appropriate components and support services; to negotiate participant contracts and make appropriate referrals; to provide supportive casework to help participants overcome barriers to program participation; to liaise with service providers; and to do related work as required.


Incumbents of positions in this classification receive training in the application of their professional counseling abilities to manage and counsel participants through a systematic program designed to assist them in becoming independent and self-supporting. Participants are public assistance applicants or recipients. GAIN Employment Counselor Trainees normally promote to GAIN Employment Counselor after six months of experience. GAIN Employment Counselors are in a journey-level professional counseling class, and are expected to perform their duties independently, including complex and unusual cases, subject to review by a GAIN Employment Counselor Supervisor. GAIN Employment Counselor Trainee positions are found exclusively in the Employment Programs Division of the Social Services Agency.

NOTE: The following are the duties performed by employees in this classification. However, employees may perform other related duties at an equivalent level. Each individual in the classification does not necessarily perform all duties listed.

1. Attends orientation and training sessions to become familiar with departmental policies, procedures, codes, regulations, laws and methods.

2. Manages and tracks participant activities through an education, training and employment program using casework and on-line computer case management methods.

3. Meets regularly with participants to provide goal-directed counseling, casework and continuous motivation.

4. Interviews participants to obtain factual information on barriers to participation, supportive service needs and education, work, training and social histories. From this information identifies participant needs, determines available resources, evaluates test results and provides services or makes appropriate referrals for specialized assistance.

5. Schedules appointments with participants and follows up with participants who do not appear. Identifies noncompliance, makes cause determinations, negotiates conciliations and notifies eligibility staff in a timely manner if participant fails to meet program requirements.

6. Explains participant rights and responsibilities and generally explains the program; assists participant to set a preliminary employment goal; determines appropriate program component for participant, and explains, negotiates and approves participant contracts; approves or disapproves deferrals or self-initiated training programs; authorizes appropriate supportive service payments.

7. Writes and maintains chronological case dictation to support case activity.

8. Discusses with and counsels participants in demonstrating work ethics, good work habits and attitudes, effective problem solving, decision making, communication, interpersonal skills and proper employment attire.

9. Develops and maintains a good working relationship with service providers, other professionals and agencies to advocate for participants, makes provider site visits when necessary. Mediates between participants and service providers to resolve complaints and problems.

10. Conducts group or individual orientation sessions.

11. Compiles data for statistical purposes.

12. Compiles, maintains and updates resource and referral lists of service providers in the community for a GAIN resources library and for individual use.

13. Identifies operational problems or suggestions for improvements and reports them to management.

Either I


The equivalent of two years of experience as an Eligibility Technician II or an equivalent or higher level social service classification in the Alameda County classified service. (Non-classified includes District Attorney’s Office, Hospital Authority, and the Consolidated Courts.)



The equivalent of three years of experience in employment-related case-management, employment counseling, or in providing employment-related services in a recognized public or private agency.

NOTE: Graduation from an accredited college or university with 30 semester or 45 quarter units in sociology, social psychology, vocational counseling or a closely related social science field may be substituted for one year of experience in either of the above qualifying patterns.


Possession of a valid California Motor Vehicle Operator's License is required.

NOTE: The Civil Service Commission may modify the above minimum qualifications in the announcement of an examination.

NOTE: The level and scope of the following knowledge and abilities are related to duties listed under the “Examples of Duties” section of this specification.

Knowledge of:

• Principles of counseling, motivation, casework and case management.
• Education and employment requirements and labor market conditions.
• County, State and Federal laws governing employment, labor conditions, and public welfare.
• Computer systems and applications.
• Community service providers and resources.

Ability to:

• Provide effective individual and group employment counseling.
• Apply principles of counseling, motivation, casework and case management.
• Interview, maintain effective working relations with, and foster a supportive environment for participants.
• Input and maintain all case record data via on-line computer system.
• Interpret and apply complex regulations and procedures.
• Acquire and apply program specific technical knowledge and knowledge of community resources.
• Communicate in a clear and understandable manner, orally and in writing.
• Analyze and evaluate individual situations, make independent and sound decision and take appropriate action.
• Conduct group meetings.
• Plan and organize.

Old document: 1079h
New document: Jobspecs/6783
CSC Date: 11/20/91


Alameda County offers a comprehensive and competitive benefits package that affords wide-ranging health care options to meet the different needs of a diverse workforce and their families. We also sponsor many different employee discount, fitness and health screening programs focused on overall well being.  These benefits include but are not limited to*:

For your Health & Well-Being

  • Medical – HMO & PPO Plans
  • Dental – HMO & PPO Plans
  • Vision or Vision Reimbursement
  • Share the Savings
  • Basic Life Insurance 
  • Supplemental Life Insurance (with optional dependent coverage for eligible employees) 
  • County Allowance Credit
  • Flexible Spending Accounts - Health FSA, Dependent Care and Adoption Assistance
  • Short-Term Disability Insurance
  • Long-Term Disability Insurance
  • Voluntary Benefits - Accident Insurance, Critical Illness, Hospital Indemnity and Legal Services
  • Employee Assistance Program

For your Financial Future

  • Retirement Plan - (Defined Benefit Pension Plan)
  • Deferred Compensation Plan (457 Plan or Roth Plan)

For your Work/Life Balance

  • 12 paid holidays
  • Floating Holidays
  • Vacation and sick leave accrual
  • Vacation purchase program
  • Catastrophic Sick Leave
  • Group Auto/Home Insurance
  • Pet Insurance
  • Commuter Benefits Program
  • Guaranteed Ride Home
  • Employee Wellness Program (e.g. At Work Fitness, Incentive Based Programs, Gym Membership Discounts)
  • Employee Discount Program (e.g. theme parks, cell phone, etc.)
  • Child Care Resources
  • 1st United Services Credit Union 

*Eligibility is determined by Alameda County and offerings may vary by collective bargaining agreement.  This provides a brief summary of the benefits offered and can be subject to change.


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