Individual Placement and Support (IPS) Employment Specialist - Slough

Berkshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust
£29,828 to £36,311 a year Per Annum (Incl. HCAS)
Closing date
30 May 2023

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Other Health Profession
Band 5
Contract Type
Full Time
Job summary

We are looking for someone to join our team as an employment specialist, to champion our mission and help people with severe mental health issues - your clients - get into, sustain and retain paid work. For people who need mental health support, work can be a vital step on their recovery journey. But, although 90% of people with severe mental health issues want to work, only 8% of them are in paid employment.

Berkshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust's Individual Placement and Support Employment Service, now in its eighth year, has a diverse team and brings many strengths together. We welcome people from a range of backgrounds and with a variety of experience for this role - you don't need any specific qualifications or clinical experience but youmust clearly be able to demonstrate that you are able to meet the person specification. We'll train you in the Individual Placement and Support approach, giving you the tools you need to provide expert support and advice to clients, while also building positive relationships with employers, opening doors, and changing perceptions around mental health.

If you're looking for a job that believes in people and to work for a caring organisation this is the role for you.This is a full-time role starting as soon as possible.

Main duties of the job

You'll manage a caseload of up to 20 people at any time, following the IPS approach. These will be people who have severe mental health issues and are unemployed or struggling in work due to their mental health issues. Working directly with all relevant stakeholders - including clients, clinicians, consultant psychiatrists and employers, Job Centre Plus, and other employment support providers - you'll aim to enable most of your clients to gain, sustain or retain paid employment.

This is an incredibly rewarding role - you'll have the opportunity to transform the lives of your clients, to give them hope, direction and support their recovery journey. It's also challenging, so you'll need to be able to demonstrate perseverance, whilst being empathic and dedicated to finding clients a role that's right for them. As a people person, you'll build a good rapport with your clients, gaining a real understanding of their key skills, aspirations and career goals and finding them opportunities to match. You'll also spend time developing productive relationships with employers to identify and negotiate job opportunities, including in the hidden labour market.

The 'must haves' for you to be considered for this role:
  • Degree or equivalent experience
  • Experience of working with and supporting people who have mental health issues
  • Experience of supporting disadvantaged groups into employment
  • Strong and empathic communication and influencing skills
  • A high level of organisation and perseverance

  • About us

    Berkshire Healthcare has a record of achievement and success that places us as one of the best performing Trusts in the country. We are rated 'Outstanding' by the CQC, we have a history of strong financial performance, and we have a highly skilled and engaged workforce. We aspire to be an outstanding organisation for everyone: our people, our patients, their families, and their carers.

    Some of the benefits of joining our team:
    • Flexible working opportunities and a strong emphasis on your work, life balance
    • Annual leave - 27 days for new starters, plus bank holidays. Increasing to 29 days after 5 years and 33 days after 10 years NHS service. Pro rata for part time staff
    • Excellent learning and development opportunities
    • Salary sacrifice scheme for a new car
    • Generous maternity, paternity and adoption leave for eligible staff
    • Advanced IT enablement and support
    • Confidential telephone care service providing independent support and advice for staff.
    • And so much more

    We are committed to equal opportunities and welcome applications from all sections of the community, regardless of any protected characteristics. Reasonable adjustments will be made for disabled applicants where required.

    The Trust may close any vacancy prior to the advertised closing date due to the high level of responses we receive for some of our vacancies.

    Job description

    Job responsibilities

    Please see attached job description for more information about this role and working at Berkshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust.

    Person Specification



    • Degree or equivalent experience

    Continuous professional development


    • A good understanding of the principles and practice of supported employment
    • Trained in the IPS approach
    • Additional employability/careers counselling qualification, such as: - Level 3 Diploma in Employability Services Sector Qualification - QCF in Advice & Guidance (Level 3)

    Previous experience


    • Experience of working with and supporting people who have mental health issues (or other unemployed disadvantaged groups) into employment
    • Experience of supporting individuals on a one-to-one basis
    • Proven experience of meeting and exceeding outcomes and targets


    • Experience of carrying out assessments (eg vocational, health, occupational)
    • Experience of partnership working, negotiation and liaison with other agencies
    • Experience of opening up job opportunities with a range of employers
    • Experience of working alongside clinical teams within mental health

    Knowledge, skills and abilities


    • Able to demonstrate empathy, tenacity and hope when working alongside people with severe mental health issues
    • Knowledge of policy, practice and legislation in relation to employment, disability, equalities and mental health
    • Good numeracy and information management skills
    • Demonstrates a high level of perseverance; committed to seeing plans through to their conclusion within agreed timescales
    • Excellent motivational, communication and listening skills; able to build rapport and trust with a range of people, especially clients and employers
    • Well organised and confident working independently with own caseload and using initiative to identify and make the most of new opportunities
    • Able to collaborate successfully within a mixed-disciplinary team
    • Able to use Microsoft packages to advanced level


    • Good knowledge of the local employment market
    • Understanding of work-related benefits
    • Understanding of successful job search strategies - eg creating a compelling CV, presenting clients to hiring managers, preparing for interviews

    Additional requirements


    • Willing to travel within your locality and across Berkshire where required


    • Personal experience of mental health issues

    Any attachments will be accessible after you click to apply.


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