Employment Resources Specialist I (Entry): Under close supervision, learns to apply regulations and procedures in accordance with established procedures to determine eligibility for multiple public assistance programs; to provide basic employment services to clients; and to perform casework management duties for both public assistance benefit and employment services, and performs related duties as required.
These classes are distinguished from Eligibility Benefits Specialist I/II classes in the scope of assigned duties and responsibilities. The Eligibility Benefits Specialist I/II classes performs duties primarily involving eligibility-only functions while the Employment Resources Specialist I/II classes performs duties in both eligibility and employment services functions. The Employment Resources Specialist I/II classes are distinguished from the Employment Resources Specialist III class in that the latter class functions as a unit leadworker and/or in a specialized eligibility/employment services assignment. Employment Resources Specialist I (Entry): This is the entry level of this series for employees seeking a career progression to an assignment involving both public assistance eligibility and employment services work. Positions are usually filled through promotion from the Eligibility Worker series. Incumbents attend training sessions and work under close supervision to learn regulations, work procedures, forms and public assistance and/or employment program requirements. After the initial orientation and training period, employees are placed in a unit where on-the-job training experience is gained to attain and demonstrate the level of competency in assigned duties necessary for promotion to the full working level of Employment Resources Specialist II. The Employment Resources Specialist I class is distinguished from the Employment Resources Specialist II by the need for immediate supervision and assignment of a limited, less complex set of job duties.
Examples of Duties
Conducts group orientations and workshops to orient applicants and recipients to the fundamental policies, programs, changes in rules, individual rights and responsibilities, and participation requirements; assists orientation participants in the understanding and completion of application and employment readiness evaluation forms for a variety of programs and services.
Interviews, advises and guides a diverse population of clients to ascertain employability, isolate barriers to employment, evaluate need for public assistance benefits, determines benefit eligibility, identifies need for ancillary services/payments, and authorizes benefits and ancillary services/payments.
Handles crisis situations by authorizing benefits within specific guidelines or makes appropriate referrals to other staff and community resources for immediate services and assistance.
Conducts initial appraisal of case records to assess client’s education, work experience, skills, abilities and job interest in order to place client in appropriate employment services component.
Assists client with transportation, training, and other ancillary needs through authorization of ancillary services/payments and/or referral to other community resources or by provision of other assistance.
Identifies clients with potential social behavioral, mental health, substance abuse, or other substantial barriers to employment for referral to other department staff or community resources.
Analyzes financial, employment, family, and personal information to determine and authorize initial or continuing eligibility for multiple aid programs.
Interprets and explains regulations, rules, and policies to clients; apprises clients of their rights, responsibilities and eligibility for program participation.
Ensures that application and declaration forms are completed accurately and thoroughly; obtains supporting information from clients and other sources.
Resolves problems and discrepancies with information provided by securing documentation, medical condition substantiation, employment records and aid confirmation from other agencies.
Conducts diversion evaluations to identify and approve lump-sum benefits for clients with immediate job prospects where receipt of such benefits would permit continuation or acquisition of employment.
Applies sanctions to clients and conducts reconciliation interviews to bring clients back into conformity with employment plan.
Inputs necessary information into automated systems; organizes caseload and takes required action with specific time limits established by regulation and local policy.
Maintains case record files, modifies employment plan and eligibility files as necessary, and monitors client compliance with program standards and agreements.
Consults with and coordinates case management with other staff and service providers.
Knowledge, Skills & Abilities
Knowledge of: Regulations and procedures governing eligibility determinations and granting of aid for assigned program areas; community resources providing social, health, nutrition, housing, employment, training, child care, transportation and other necessary client services; general goals and purposes of public social services programs; techniques for interviewing and gathering information from a varied population; basic labor market and needed employment skills and abilities; mathematics sufficient to interpret client income and expense information to calculate benefits within program requirements; group presentation techniques; standard office practices and procedures, including operation of standard and automated office equipment; record keeping principles and practices; techniques for dealing with a variety of individuals from various socio-economic, ethnic and cultural backgrounds; and basic computer applications related to the work.
Ability to: Read and understand complex social services regulations and procedures; apply and explain complex regulations and procedures; learn to conduct group orientations about County and local social services programs; perform basic employment readiness appraisals; route clients to the appropriate employment services component; learn the social services programs and community resource provided by the County; communicate clear and accurate information regarding clients to other staff; interpret and explain complex rules, regulations, procedures and technical information; establish, maintain, research, and verify client information and computer produced client data and files; interview and obtain accurate information from a diverse client population; interpret financial information and make accurate arithmetic calculations; prepare clear and accurate notes, reports, correspondence and other written materials; use automated technology to maintain records and files; resolve client problems within procedural guidelines; deal with a variety of individuals from various socio-economic, ethnic and cultural backgrounds, often under adverse and high stress situations.
Education and Experience
One (1) year of experience performing duties equivalent to an Eligibility Benefits Specialist II (Eligibility Worker II) in a California County Department of Social Services, OR
One (1) year of experience performing vocational guidance services, employment counseling or placement work in a government funded employment. AND
Completion of the equivalent of 15 semester units, 20 quarter units or 22.5 continuing education credits preferably in behavioral science in sociology, psychology, counseling, vocational guidance or coursework related to public assistance grant programs or the provision of employment services. This required coursework may be obtained through colleges, universities, university extension, business school, or employer provided career development training. A continuing education unit is equivalent to point sixty (.60) semester units. OR
A bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university preferably in behavioral science in sociology, psychology, counseling, vocational guidance or coursework related to public assistance grant programs or the provision of employment services or a closely related field.
Drivers License: Possession of a valid California Class C Drivers License may be required at the time of appointment. Loss of the Class C Drivers License is a cause for discipline. Individuals who do not meet this requirement due to a physical disability will be considered for accommodation on a case-by-case basis.
Language Proficiency: Some positions allocated to these classes may require bilingual skills.
Assignment Requirements: Some positions in these classes may require work in an out-station location or in a setting with other professionals integrated as a team.
Travel: Independent travel may be required.
Child Abuse Reporting: Selectees for employment must as a condition of employment sign a statement agreeing to comply with Section 11166 of the California Penal Code relating to child abuse reporting.
Typical Physical Requirements: Sit for extended periods; frequently stand and walk; sufficient manual dexterity to perform repetitive motion in various duties such as: key boarding, writing, filing, reaching and grasping above shoulder level; normal eye-hand coordination; body strength sufficient to lift and carry case files; corrected vision to normal range to read fine print and computer screen; corrected hearing to speak and hear sufficiently to communicate clearly over the telephone and in person; ability to use of office equipment including telephones, calculators, copiers, facsimile, computers, and other related peripheral equipment such as printers and scanners.
Typical Working Conditions: Work is performed in an office environment and includes continuous contact with staff and the public; may be required to enter private homes to make family home visits for purpose of investigation; work may involve stressful situations and includes dealing with erratic and sometimes threatening behavior; may travel to community areas that are potentially dangerous.