Impact of Follow-Along Support on Job Tenure in the Individual Placement and Support Model
Individual Placement and Support (IPS) effectively helps clients with severe mental illness to obtain competitive jobs. However, one IPS model component, ongoing support for clients who obtain employment, has not been empirically validated. We hypothesized that frequency of employment specialist contact would be associated with job tenure. IPS employment specialists provided monthly data on 142 clients who had obtained employment, recording client contacts and competitive employment outcomes over a 2-year follow-up. Prototypically, employment specialists made weekly contact immediately after a job start, within a few months reduced this to monthly, and maintained this frequency thereafter. Frequency of contact was positively correlated with months of work during follow-up (r = 0.27). IPS typically provides support for 1 year or more after clients begin the job. Ongoing IPS support from employment specialists promotes continued employment. Future research should identify characteristics of effective employment specialist interventions and examine other sources of support.
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