Monday, April 6, 2020

Employment Specialist II, BHCS

Recruitment #19-6782-01


THIS IS A NEW ASSEMBLED EXAMINATION.  The eligible list resulting from this examination will cancel any existing list and may last approximately one year, but can be extended.


Applications must be in the possession of the Human Resource Services Department by 5:00 p.m. on the Last Day for Filing.  Applications will only be accepted on-line.


Supplemental Questionnaire:  A properly completed Supplemental Questionnaire must be submitted with each application.  Applications and Supplemental Questionnaires must be in the possession of the Human Resource Services Department by 5:00 p.m. on the Last Day for Filing.  Failure to submit the Supplemental Questionnaire will result in disqualification.


Qualified bilingual persons who speak English and are also fluent in: Spanish, Chinese, Vietnamese, Cambodian, Laotian, Korean, Mien, Tagalog, Amharic, Farsi, Dari, Tigrigna, Russian, Romanian or Sign Languages are especially encouraged to apply. There is an additional bi weekly compensation for persons in positions designated bilingual. Qualified candidates may be tested to demonstrate language proficiency.



Alameda County, located on the east side of San Francisco Bay, is California's seventh-largest county.  The County employs 9,700 full-time employees and operates on an annual budget of $3.4 billion.  Oakland, the County seat, is California's eighth largest city.  One and a half million people call Alameda County home and live in a variety of incorporated cities, unincorporated communities and rural areas.  As a major urban county, Alameda provides a full range of services to its citizens.  The County is a blend of culturally and ethnically diverse communities, and its mixture of cosmopolitan and suburban areas provides the perfect environment for families and their active lifestyles.  The County offers extensive cultural resources, countless recreational opportunities and an array of fine public and private colleges and universities.  



Alameda County's Health Services Program is administered by the Health Care Services Agency and includes the following program areas: Behavioral Health Care, Public Health, Environmental Health, and Agency Administration/Indigent Health. The ultimate mission of the Health Care Services Agency is to provide fully integrated health care services through a comprehensive network of public and private partnerships that ensure optimal health and well-being and respect the diversity of all residents. Health Care Services Agency currently has multiple career opportunities for experienced professionals to become part of a service delivery team dedicated to the optimal health and well-being of Alameda County residents.  For more information about the Health Care Services Agency, please visit



It is the mission of Behavioral Health Care Services to maximize the recovery, resilience and wellness of all eligible Alameda County residents who are developing or experiencing serious mental health, alcohol, or drug concerns. We envision communities where people realize their potential, and where stigma and discrimination against those with mental health, alcohol and/or drug issues are a thing of the past.


Only through exemplifying the following Alameda County Behavioral Health values will we be successful:



Access - where every door is the right door for welcoming people with complex needs;

Consumer and Family Empowerment - through shared decisionmaking best practices, that clinically produce effective outcomes;

Best Practices - business excellence that uses public resources costeffectively;

Health and Wellness - by integrating emotional, spiritual and physical health care;

Culturally Responsive - appropriate services built on the strengths and life experiences of culturally diverse consumers and their families;

Social Inclusion - utilizing advocacy and education to eliminate stigma, discrimination, isolation, and misunderstanding of persons with mental illness and substance abuse.


For more information about Alameda County Behavioral Health, please visit



The Vocational Program has been operating since 1975, to help people with mental illness increase their independence and self-sufficiency by achieving success in the workforce. We partner with mental health clinics to help program participants reach their vocational goals. We believe that people will be able to get and keep a job that fits their interests and preferences. Our aim is to provide supports to help them accomplish this. These supports include vocational counseling and outreach, collaboration with mental health teams, benefits counseling, job development and placement, job coaching, and job retention follow-along services.


Our program uses the Evidence Based Practice of Individual Placement and Support (IPS) to help people find and keep jobs in their communities. This model has been heavily researched and has been found to be the most effective way to help people with psychiatric disabilities that want to work. We are supported through a partnership with the California Department of Rehabilitation. Our staff, which is comprised of employment specialists, rehabilitation counselors, mental health specialists, and a benefits planner, has helped many people achieve success in the workforce. Click here for more information about the Vocational Program.  



Under close supervision, to assist adults with severe mental illness in obtaining and maintaining competitive employment consistent with their vocational goals; and to do related work as required.

Employment Specialist I is the entry level and Employment Specialist II is the journey level of this class series. Incumbents provide services to clients assigned to the Vocational Program in the Alameda County Department of Behavioral Health Care Services. Employment Specialists deliver specialized employment services to a targeted client population who have severe mental illness and co-occurring disorders and provide follow-along support and job coaching in addition to job placement services. Incumbents are assigned various duties related to obtaining competitive employment for clients, including engaging, assessing, preparing, placing, and coaching clients.

Employment Specialists report to and receive direction from a Senior Employment Specialist. The Employment Specialist I is distinguished from the Employment Specialist II in that the Employment Specialist I requires close supervision during training whereas the Employment Specialist II exercises more independent judgment in the delivery of services.


These classes are flexibly staffed and the Employment Specialist I is expected to flexibly promote to the higher level upon demonstrating proficiency through satisfactory performance during the six-month training period.



In addition to meeting the minimum qualifications, ideal candidates: have direct experience working as vocational recovery-oriented coaches on multi-disciplinary teams serving people with mental health and substance abuse recovery issues; have demonstrated success supporting clients to become gainfully employed; are resourceful with a strong network of local employer contacts in a variety of industries; are creative in crafting supported employment and skills enhancement opportunities for clients, enable clients’ successful and sustained employability within the community. Additionally, the ideal candidate will be:


·         An effective communicator able to interview, counsel, develop and maintain collaborative relationships with clients, their families, employers, schools, mental health providers, community organizations, county staff, other agencies, and the general public

·         Someone who recognizes diversity as a core value and is able to work effectively with individuals of diverse cultures, interpersonal styles, abilities, motivations, or backgrounds; maintaining constructive relationships that result in diverse work teams that better serve our diverse communities. 

·         Someone who understands outreach concepts, principles, and practices of community employer sourcing, job development, and client placement; and is experienced at aligning human capital needs of employers. 

·         Someone with a recovery-oriented approach, who takes personal satisfaction and pride contributing as an Employment Specialist who intensively prepares and supports vocational service clients with finding and keeping jobs in the community based on their preferences and needs, and can adopt a “do whatever it takes” approach to the work

·         A strong program administrator with sufficient professional knowledge and skill to perform tasks and activities and prepare documents essential to the day-to-day operation of a Vocational Program providing specialized employment services to mentally disabled, addicted and dually diagnosed clients.

·         A collaborative spirit who inspires teamwork by being accessible, supportive, open-minded, proactive and contributing successfully as a member of a team

·         Someone who is well organized and able to plan activities and establish a course of action for self and others to ensure that work is completed efficiently.

·         One who is knowledgeable of County, State, and Federal laws governing employment, labor conditions, American Disabilities Act guidelines, and public welfare

For a detailed listing of the essential responsibilities and core competency requirements for this position, please click here for the job description.





The equivalent of six months of full time experience in the class of Employment Specialist I in the Alameda County classified service.



The equivalent of three years of full-time experience performing a combination of functions related to the vocational counseling and rehabilitation job solicitation and placement of adults with severe mental illness, substance use disorder, or co-occurring disorders, or the recruitment or sourcing of employers within the business community.


(Substitution: Possession of a bachelor’s degree from a recognized college or university in the field of sociology, psychology, rehabilitation, counseling, business administration, marketing or a closely-related social science field may be substituted for one year of the required experience.)



Possession of a valid California Motor Vehicle operator’s license is required for both levels.

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


The most suitably qualified candidates will possess the following competencies: 

Knowledge of:

  • Principles of vocational and employment counseling and training.
  • Educational and experience requirements for a wide variety of jobs and employment opportunities.
  • County, State, and Federal laws governing employment, labor conditions, American Disabilities Act guidelines and public welfare.
  • Social Security Administration Work Incentives.
  • Principles, practices and techniques of marketing, job development and client placement.
  • Outreach program development, implementation and evaluation.
  • Computer applications related to the work.

Ability to:

  • Interview, counsel, and maintain effective working relations with clients, family members, employers, schools, county staff and other agencies.
  • Develop individualized, practical and effective employment training plans.
  • Understand terms and best practices in both mental health and drug and alcohol treatment.
  • Develop and update curriculums with current career and employment resources.
  • Effectively market and represent a program, its clients and services to employers.
  • Work with a diverse client population.
  • Communicate clearly and effectively, both orally and in writing.
  • Administer examinations and draw valid conclusions from their results.
  • Work cooperatively and effectively with community agencies, service providers, school
    officials, and the public.
  • Write clear and concise reports.


The examination will consist of the following steps: 1) A review of candidates' applications to verify possession of minimum requirements. 2) Those candidates who possess the minimum requirements for the class will move on to the next step in the examination process which is a review of candidates' Supplemental Questionnaires to select the best qualified applicants to continue in the process. 3) Those candidates selected as best qualified will move on to the next step in the examination process, an oral interview examination which will be weighted as 100% of the candidate's final examination score. The oral interview examination may contain situational exercises.




We reserve the right to make changes to the announced examination components.


Alameda County utilizes a Civil Service Selection System founded on merit. Such a system is competitive and based on broad recruitment efforts and equal opportunity for qualified applicants to test in an examination process designed to determine the qualifications, fitness and ability of competitors to perform duties of the vacant position.  Many of our recruitments are targeted and specific to the needs of a current vacant position, in which case, the eligible list may be exclusively used for that current vacant position. Other recruitments may be more broadly used for both current and future vacancies, or for other alternate jobs with comparable scopes of work.


To learn more about our recruitment and selection process, please visit the “What You Need to Know” section of our website,

Selection Plan

Applicants will be informed via email with reasonable notice in advance of any examination process which will require their attendance.  The following dates are tentative and subject to change based on the needs of the Agency:  



Deadline for Filing

5:00pm, Monday, May 4, 2020

5:00pm, Monday, April 6, 2020

Review of Minimum Qualifications

May 11, 2020

 April 13, 2020

Supplemental Questionnaire Review for Best Qualified

May 29, 2020

 May 1, 2020

Oral Interview Exam**

TBD May 14-15, 2020

**The combined oral examination/hiring interview, in addition to establishing an eligibility list, may serve as the final selection interview for vacancies in this classification.




Alameda County and the Human Resource Services Department will make reasonable efforts in the examination and/or selection process to accommodate qualified individuals with disabilities and/or medical conditions in accordance/compliance with the State Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA), Federal Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Alameda County’s Reasonable Accommodation Policy and applicable statues.  To request an accommodation due to a disability/medical condition during this or other phases of the examination/selection process, please contact the assigned Human Resources Representative listed on the job announcement before the last date of filing. Alameda County requires applicants to provide supporting documentation to substantiate a request for reasonable accommodation. In order to qualify for a reasonable accommodation, applicants must have a disability/medical condition pursuant to the ADA, FEHA and applicable statutes.



For more information regarding our Reasonable Accommodation procedures, please visit our website,


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

  • 11 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.



All notices related to County recruitments for which you have applied will be sent/delivered via email. Please add and as accepted addresses to any email blocking or spam filtering program you may use. If you do not do this, your email blocking or spam filtering program may block receipt of the notices regarding your application for recruitments. You are also strongly advised to regularly log into your County of Alameda online application account to check for notices that may have been sent to you. All email notices that will be sent to you will also be kept in your personal online application account. You will be able to view all of your notices in your online application account by clicking on the "My applications" button on the Current Job Openings page.


Please take the steps recommended above to insure you do not miss any notices about a recruitment for which you have applied. The County of Alameda is not responsible for notices that are not read, received or accessed by any applicant for a County recruitment.


NOTE: All notices are generated through an automated email notification system. Replies to the email box are routed to an unmonitored mailbox. All notices are generated through an automated email notification system. If you have questions, please go to our website at You may also contact the Human Resources Analyst listed on the job announcement for the recruitment for which you have applied.


Nicole Lewis-Bolton, Human Resources Analyst II

Human Resource Services, County of Alameda

(510) 272-6468 •


Alameda County has a diverse workforce, that is representative of the communities we serve, and is proud to be an equal opportunity employer.  All aspects of employment are based on merit, competence, performance and business need. Alameda County does not discriminate in employment on the basis of:  race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy and gender identity), national origin, political affiliation, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, genetic information, age, membership in an employee organization, retaliation, parental status, military service, or other non-merit factors protected under federal, state and local law. Alameda County celebrates diversity and is committed to creating an inclusive, and welcoming workplace environment.

Click on a link below to apply for this position:

Fill out the Supplemental Questionnaire and Application NOW using the Internet. Apply Online
View and print the Supplemental Questionnaire. This recruitment requires completion of a supplemental questionnaire. You may view and print the supplemental questionnaire here.