Summary: A Job Coach is an expert who utilizes personality and skills tests to assess their client’s personality, background, education, interests and other details used in suggesting the most suitable career path for them. Job coaches are sometimes considered counselors, since part of their job is to work on their client’s self-esteem and motivate them into finding a job where they would most likely succeed. They also help their clients formulate resumes, check job openings, apply for a certain position, and prepare them for any interview or test they may have to go through.
Duties: The primary task of a Job Coach is to assist their clients in various employment settings to develop their workplace skills. They coordinate with Employment specialists to identify workplace performance concerns, meet with clients to review performance and attempt to remedy any concerns, provide employment assistance, monitor client’s continued improvement and provide coaching when necessary, and provide feedback to Employment Specialists. Some schools also hire them to interpret employment and career data for their students and may be tasked to develop a curriculum for career development courses. They are also responsible for ensuring their client is aware of job duties; making sure the client is prepared for the job by making sure they have the proper attire and that clients get to work on time; adapting the kind and amount of instruction to the client’s learning style; and helping the client develop plans for managing, saving or spending their earnings.
Education and Training Requirements: Job coaches usually have a background in Human Resources, Counseling, or Business Recruitment. Since this is an unregulated field, there are no specific courses which would provide you with all the needed knowledge as a Job coach. There are, however, certifications which will prove to be an asset when trying to gain a client’s trust. These are the Associate Certified Coach (ACC) credential which requires completing a training which specializes on specific coaching aspects, Professional Certified Coach (PCC) credential and Master Certified Coach (MCC). Each demands to complete a specific training, a minimum number of clients, and a certain number of coaching hours.
Knowledge and Skills Requirements: As a Job coach, it is important to be well organized, patient, a good listener, empathetic to your client’s needs. You should always keep your client’s limitations in mind, allowing them to push beyond their limits without burning them out. You should always be observant because this will help you learn more about your client’s personality. Being warm and friendly also helps because this will allow your client to feel more comfortable around you. Depending on the setting, computer skills may also be an asset. Ultimately, you must have people skills because the job requires you to deal with clients with varying issues. It is also important to understand the dynamics of a work place as this may help their clients in facing their problems. Since they utilize various psychological tests to analyze their client’s personality and skills, it is also necessary that they are knowledgeable in using testing tools such as the Birkman Personality Assessment and the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator.
Working Conditions: Job coaches who work in high schools, colleges, universities, or companies usually work in an office setting. They work an average of 45 hours a week, although those who are in private practice may enjoy more flexible hours. A cozy, well lighted place is normally required to make client meet-ups more comfortable. The job requires the ability to work under a degree of stress related to duties that require constant attention and working with clients. Travel between clients may also be necessary.
Salary: Job coaches salaries range from $33,000 to $57,000 a year. Many factors may affect this, which include whether you are in private practice, or work for a company; experience and certification; benefits; and location. Common benefits include medical, dental, and vision insurance; as well as paid vacations.