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Employment Specialist

Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust
£28,407 to £34,581 per annum pro rata
Closing date
8 Mar 2024

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Other Health Profession
Band 5
Contract Type
Full Time
IPS Employment Specialists B5 - Permanent Posts

3 full time posts for Liverpool

1 part time post (22.5 hours) for Wirral, based in Stein Centre

1 full time post for Warrington based in Wakefield House

An exciting opportunity has arisen for Band 5 Employment Specialists for the Individual Placement and Support (IPS) Services in Liverpool, Wirral, and Warrington and Halton. The IPS service supports Mersey Care service users with severe and enduring mental health conditions who are under Community Mental Health and/or Early Intervention Teams and are looking for paid employment as part of their recovery journey. The IPS Teams are situated under the portfolio of The Life Rooms.

Main duties of the job

The Employment Specialist will join an Individual Placement and Support Team (IPS) working under the direction of the IPS Employment Services Manager to deliver IPS as part of the holistic recovery plan for mental health service users.

The post holder will work directly with employers to secure employment opportunities for people who have experienced mental health problems, and subsequently provide ongoing support depending on employee's and employer's needs. The aim will be to enable people who have experienced mental health problems to gain and retain paid employment.

Additionally, the post holder will work directly with all relevant stakeholders: the service user, Employment Specialist colleagues, community staff, Consultant Psychiatrists and employers - the aim is to enable the majority of the service users on the caseload to gain and retain paid employment.

About us

Mersey Care is one of the largest trusts providing physical health and mental health services in the North West, serving more than 1.4 million people across our region and are also commissioned for services that cover the North West, North Wales and the Midlands.

We offer specialist inpatient and community services that support physical and mental health and specialist inpatient mental health, learning disability, addiction and brain injury services. Mersey Care is one of only three trusts in the UK that offer high secure mental health facilities.

At the heart of all we do is our commitment to 'perfect care' - care that is safe, effective, positively experienced, timely, equitable and efficient. We support our staff to do the best job they can and work alongside service users, their families, and carers to design and develop future services together. We're currently delivering a programme of organisational and service transformation to significantly improve the quality of the services we provide and safely reduce cost as we do so.

Flexible working requests will be considered for all roles.

Job description

Job responsibilities

The Employment Specialist will be required to manage a caseload of between 20-25 people at any one time of service users that have experienced severe mental health issues and are either currently unemployed or to support individuals to retain their current employment.

The Employment Specialist will be expected to deliver the IPS approach, working directly with all relevant stakeholders.

The Employment Specialist will maintain a professional relationship with the service users of the IPS service, key internal and external stakeholders, with particular attention to confidentiality and the maintenance of professional boundaries.

To adhere to mandatory administrative and data capture protocols when recording the progress of individuals. To keep accurate and complete records of casework, using the appropriate electronic clinical notes systems.

To act independently, using own judgement, knowledge and initiative to develop and understanding of the needs and potential career aspirations of job seekers.

The Employment Specialist will support service users to gain and retain paidemployment, meeting the KPI targets of 2 new job starts per month.

To sensitively gather information, to develop a shared vocational profile and an agreed Job Notion or Curriculum Vitae, for each individual job seeker. On occasion complex, sensitive and contentious information will need to be provided and/or received. To deal with sometimes emotional and distressing behaviour and difficult situations and circumstances.

To commence rapid job search within 30 days of receiving a referral for a service user, whilst utilising local support networks to help them overcome their barriers to employment.

To research the labour market and spend time getting to know local employers in order to negotiate job opportunities that meet everyones strengths, needs, abilities and preferences. Meeting KPI target of 6-8 quality employer contacts each week.

It is the responsibility of the Employment Specialist to source meaningful paid job opportunities for service users through tailored job search and regular contact with employers. Spend time getting to know local employers, in order to negotiate job opportunities in the hidden labour market that meet each individuals strengths, needs, abilities and preferences.

It is the responsibility of the Employment Specialists to undertake job analyses and workplace assessments, when placing service users with employers, ensure that the quality of work environments is explored, including potential for workplace adjustments that will accommodate individual strengths, skills, symptoms and coping skills.

To provide specialised advice to employers concerning employment to job seekers with a range of different clinical needs.

To provide specialist education and support to employers, as agreed with the individual, which may include negotiating adjustments, return to work strategy and on-going contact with the employer to ensure job retention.

To develop workplace introduction strategies together with a comprehensive package of individualised support to service users once they have returned to work.

To provide individualised support to service users once they have returned to work to assist them in sustaining employment.

To appropriately monitor the longer-term career development of individuals supported into employment offering ongoing input as required.

Build relationships with clinical teams to generate referrals and create collaborative working partnerships with clinicians where employment support is integrated into mental health treatment.

Build a multi-disciplinary approach to the return to work. For example, involve clinical staff (where relevant) in managing symptoms at work, medication reviews and supporting rehabilitation needs e.g., social skill development, budgeting, travel training etc.

With appropriate consent, to communicate and liaise with carers, families, employers and other professionals on behalf of the service user as required.

Employment Specialist will ensure all mandatory training is completed and up to date. Additional training will be offered and with the expectation that all staff will complete all role specific training provided by external organisations.

The post holder will make themselves familiar with their obligations under the Health and Safety at Work Act, always ensuring their safety and the safety of others.

To ensure that all relevant policies are implemented such as information governance, safeguarding etc.

To regularly collect and promote service user employment recovery stories.

The post holder will be involved in highly innovative positive approaches designed to challenge assumptions and discriminative recruitment practices.

To provide cover/support to localities with high levels of referrals, complex cases, or where there is a disruption to service due to illness or vacancies.

Person Specification



  • Educated to degree level or equivalent or demonstrable experience


  • Level 3 Diploma in Employability Services Sector
  • Trained in IPS Delivery Model
  • Mental Health First Aid qualification
  • NVQ level 3 in Care or Learning Disability related
  • Knowledge and understanding of teaching principles., Training in: Training in Systematic Instruction, Counselling, Person Centred Planning, Adult education/training, Sales & marketing

Knowledge and Experience


  • Experience of working with people with complex mental health needs or a similar service user group
  • Knowledge and experience of recovery and social inclusion principals
  • Experience of utilising IT systems
  • Experience of working within diverse communities
  • Ability to engage with employers across all industries using a variety of methods
  • Understanding and experience of working across a range of recruitment/ employment sectors
  • Understanding of employment and challenges/barriers for people with complex mental health needs
  • Knowledge of disability and special needs issues, policies and legislation in relation to employment
  • Knowledge of the labour market and a demonstrated understanding of 'market positioning
  • Understanding of financial implications between benefits/pay structure and advising service user's accordingly


  • Experience of working in supported employment services
  • Understanding of principals and practices of the Individual Placement and Support model (IPS)
  • Experience of caring for someone experiencing mental ill health
  • Personal experience of using mental health services
  • An understanding of self employment or business start up



  • Continuous Improvement
  • Accountability
  • Respectfulness
  • Enthusiasm
  • Support
  • High professional standards
  • Responsive to service users
  • Engaging leadership style
  • Strong customer service belief
  • Transparency and honesty
  • Discreet
  • Change oriented



  • Naturally interested in and energised by working with and talking to people
  • Non -judgemental and trustworthy
  • Passion and drive to make a positive difference to people's lives
  • Belief that people with mental illness can gain and sustain meaningful work
  • Responds positively to failure and is able to translate it into a valuable learning experience
  • Patient and empathetic to others' situations without imposing own experiences or beliefs onto others
  • Ability to work unsupervised
  • Ability to listen and make grounded judgements
  • Ability to use tact and diplomacy and negotiation skills when dealing with and seeking to new employers
  • Reaching shared agreement, effective group/meeting skills
  • Ability to learn and assimilate quickly into a variety of situations
  • Ability to keep effective records both verbal and written in a timely and accurate fashion
  • Ability to translate employer need into job seeker opportunity

Employer details

Employer name

Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust


Various Sites

Evered Ave


L9 2AF

Any attachments will be accessible after you click to apply.


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