Employment Readiness refers to a person’s ability to obtain and/or maintain suitable employment. Individuals are considered employment ready after receiving Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) services, which may include, but not limited to equipment and training necessary to become gainfully employed.
Department of Services for the Blind’s (DSB) Vocational Rehabilitation Counselors (VRCs) assist individuals who are blind or visually impaired in developing and refining the skills that will enhance their ability to enter and maintain employment.
Employment readiness counseling activities may include assessments to determine a person’s strengths and support needs as related to a job – from technology use to activities of daily living – and then creating a training plan. The plan includes all of the activities needed to ensure the individual is employment ready.
DSB provides training to individuals to develop effective communication and problem-solving skills; adaptive skills of blindness, including instruction in orientation and mobility and assistive technology equipment use; job-seeking skills; effective workplace communication around their disability and an understanding of employer expectations. DSB may provide support to get higher education needed for a job, if the individual is underemployed, or certification needed to maintain certain positions.
VRCs help participants become employment ready and gain the requirements necessary to move into the career of their choice, include:
- Documentation ensuring the person has all appropriate information employers require.
- Completion of any required certifications or licenses.
- Determine accommodations that will be needed on the job
- Job-seeking skills for the current job market.
VRCs re-assess the participant's overall skills before declaring them employment ready. This includes ensuring that they possess adequate support and training needed to begin their job search. Individuals take the lead on their job seeking activities, in collaboration with the VRC, and occasionally provided by private contractors from the community.