Explain the rationale for spending time in the community. Time in the community is correlated with better client outcomes. Also, people are more likely to stay engaged in the program if they do not have to come to the office for appointments. And employment specialists learn more about their clients’ preferences by meeting them in the community, visiting different workplaces, and seeing them at home. You could point out that people are more likely to find jobs if employment specialists are out in the community talking to employers, helping their clients apply for jobs, and helping their clients follow up on job applications in person.
An effective strategy is for supervisors to model spending time in the community by going with staff to meet with employers, to meet with clients, etc. Working side-by-side will show specialists how to work in different locations and will also demonstrate that you think community-based services are important.
During individual supervision, review schedules with the employment specialists who are spending the most time in the office. Ask, “What are you scheduled to do tomorrow? And where are you meeting Tim? Why are you meeting him in the office instead of taking him out to look at jobs?…”