Many of us have heard the saying, “Kick the tires” when purchasing a car. The phrase has expanded beyond car buying to other purchases. While no one is exactly sure where the phrase came from, most know that it means you should make sure what you’re buying is of sound quality before purchasing. No one wants a flat tire as soon as they drive their new car off the lot!
Choosing an Employment Services Organization (ESO) to provide you with job coaching is no different than when you purchase other services. While you may not be purchasing job coaching services directly, you should still make sure you are going to receive quality services. So, how do you ‘kick the tires’ on an ESO?
Here are several suggestions to ensure you pick the right ESO to help you reach your goals:
- Do your homework. Take some time to learn about an ESO from their website. What is the company’s mission, vision, values, and beliefs? If you cannot find them clearly stated on the website, you may have a hard time determining if the company’s culture is the right fit for you.
- Check their ‘references.’ Ask your DARS counselor or Support Coordinator what they know about the company. How is their relationship? How many cases has a counselor or coordinator worked with at the company? What were the outcomes? Most of the time, your counselor or coordinator will have a good feel for whether or not an ESO is a good fit for you.
- Interview the company. Yes, you can interview an ESO before choosing them as a provider for your job coaching services! Call and set up an appointment to talk to someone about their services.
Need some ideas for questions? Try these:
Are your services person-centered?
- “Person-centered” service means that you have control over the services you receive and the career path you choose. Your employment success depends on your job coach understanding how to provide person-centered service.
Does your company put Employment First?
- You have the ability and right to work if you choose. The ESO is there to support you in this pursuit and will focus on what you can do, not on what you can’t.
What type of employment services do you offer?
- Assessment, job development, job training, and long term employment supports are the core of employment services. But there are many other employment services, as well. Benefits counseling, behavioral supports, transition services, and real job opportunities are all other aspects of services to consider.
How do you train your staff, and what are your expectations from them for providing services?
- It’s important to know that you will have quality employment staff providing you job coaching services. An ESO should be able to tell you how they prepare their staff to help people find, get, and keep jobs. You want a job coach that will help you be successful.
Now you’re ready to kick tires! You can make your choice with confidence and find the Employment Services Organization that is the right fit for you.
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