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15483 - Employment Specialist

Job Details

Plaza Health Center - Portland, OR
Full Time (30+ hrs. or more)
$22.57 - $23.60 Hourly
Community Services & Outreach


Cascadia is dedicated to the health and well-being of our employees and the communities we serve.

All candidates who accept a position with Cascadia must be fully vaccinated for Covid-19 and be able to provide proof of vaccination prior to their start date. Fully vaccinated is defined as completing the dosing regimen of one of the vaccines currently authorized by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

If you have questions, please ask during the recruitment process.


This position is located at our Plaza Health Center in SE Portland. The schedule for this position is Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.


Essential Function

Under immediate supervision, the Employment Specialist supports individuals who are enrolled in mental health outpatient programs in obtaining and maintaining employment, while supporting a Trauma Informed Care environment. With the high prevalence of trauma among individuals receiving mental health services, it is required the Employment Specialist understand the effects of trauma on health, coping, and other aspects of the lives of those we serve. The Employment Specialist is responsible for all areas of employment including job development, career exploration, employment preparation, assistance in finding employment and job retention. This position utilizes rehabilitative clinical practices and will work with other service providers in helping the client develop, establish and maintain employment.


Essential Responsibilities

This position description is not intended to be an all-inclusive list of responsibilities, skills, or working conditions associated with the position. Management reserves the right to modify, add or remove duties as necessary.

  • Provide assistance to individuals in identifying areas of employment interest using Strengths-Based orientation.
  • Provide ongoing individual support and encouragement to individuals.
  • Match job seeking clients and employers using a variety of professional job placement skills and resources.
  • Provide retention services including on site job coaching to ensure individual success and employer satisfaction. Explore with the employer and the individual available alternatives to address barriers and focus on job retention.
  • Provide client assessment and develop employment/training plans. Monitor individual progress. Provide individual counseling and guidance individuals in developing career and/or employment goals.
  • Collaborate with community resource agencies and associated program team members to remove barriers, provide intervention and make referrals for other needed or appropriate issues.
  • Educate individuals about benefits eligibility and how working may affect benefits.
  • Participate in compliance, quality assurance and quality improvement as directed.
  • Documents and maintains clinical records in a manner that assures compliance with all agency policies and procedures and local, state, and federal regulations. Maintains accurate and up-to-date documentation as required, associated with billing, assessment, treatment, clients progress and other activities. Completes electronic medical records (EMR) as required using Cascadia software.
  • Develop and maintain professional relationships with employers.
  • Transports clients when appropriate in job search and development activities.
  • Demonstrate clinical knowledge and expertise to facilitate overcoming barriers unique to people with mental illness in securing employment opportunities.
  • Respects and honors client rights and responsibilities and demonstrates professional boundaries and ethics.
  • Adheres to mandatory abuse reporting laws and HIPAA requirements.

Secondary Responsibilities:

  • Participates in all scheduled staff meetings, supervision sessions, and other departmental and agency meetings. Seeks additional supervision as needed
  • Attends seminars, training and other educational opportunities in order to develop professional skills and abilities. Completes annual employee training requirements on a timely basis as indicated in the agency requirements.
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills.
  • Works cooperatively in a team setting to coordinate continuity of care.
  • Performs other duties as assigned




The incumbent must possess a Bachelors degree in a behavioral science field from an accredited college or university or three years of full time professional experience working with adults with severe and persistent mental illness. The job incumbent must demonstrate the competencies as outlined in OAR 309-016-0005 to become credentialed as a Qualified Mental Health Associate (QMHA).


Experience working with individuals with disabilities or human service related experience is preferred.

Specialized Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

  • Must understand recovery model, motivational interviewing, illness management and recovery, evidence based practices, and strength based case management philosophies and strategies.
  • Proficient in operating computer hardware and software (including EMR software).
  • Ability to enter and retrieve data and to prepare simple reports.


Must have access to a personal vehicle. Possess a valid drivers license, three-year driving history; clean driving record, ability to pass Driver Motor Vehicle (DMV) check and complete the Cascadia online Defensive Driving course.

Core Competencies

Leadership and Decision Making:

Identify and prioritize client treatment plan goals

Serve as a role model for other Employment Specialist

Influence, persuade or coach others into taking alternative courses of action when appropriate

Make decisions with little guidance and review

Maintain confidentiality of information when necessary


Excellent verbal and written communication skills

Effectively engage with internal providers, external providers, and stakeholders

Work independently as well as part of a team

Demonstrate a work history of dependability

Promote safety and welfare of clients, and foster a cohesive workplace

Demonstrate initiative and creativity in approach to problems and tasks

Work accurately, efficiently, and effectively to control operating expenses

Meet or exceed any assigned billing targets

Contribute to cost savings by identifying opportunities to improve methods, systems and procedures to increase productivity and enhance services

Demonstrate culturally competent practices and an understanding of the impact cultural influences have on behavioral health services

Represent the company effectively in a variety of settings and with diverse communities

Working Conditions

Work is performed primarily out in the community. The nature of the work dictates that the employee is alert and attentive during his or her assigned shift. Universal Precautions and remaining alert to the environment are critical to address the potential for violent behavior, exposure to disease, biohazards, noise and contaminants. The majority of the work is performed during normal business hours with potential of a staff schedule including Saturday or Sunday.

Mental Demands:

The work assigned is diverse and involves addressing new and unusual circumstances in which outcomes may negatively affect costs, employee morale or clients. The work regularly involves a degree of unpredictability and disruption of planned tasks requiring a flexible time management approach.

Physical Demands:

Activities and structure, which assist clients in learning skills and techniques, associated with obtaining and maintaining employment. It is required that this position be approved to provide transportation utilizing agency vehicles or personal vehicle in order to meet clients out in the community.


We offer generous benefits for our full-time and part-time employees (20 hours + pro-rated) including:

  • Generous Paid Time Off Package Full-time employees earn 6 weeks of PTO in their first year!
  • Medical and Dental Coverage (begins 1st of the month following 30 days after hire date)
  • VSP Vision Discount Plan
  • 403(B) Retirement Savings (Pre and post-tax plans with matching contribution)
  • Flexible Spending Account (FSA) (Medical, dependent care, and transportation options)
  • Short-Term Disability, Long-Term Disability, and Life Insurance
  • Paid Bereavement and Jury Duty Leave
  • Length of Service Award
  • Voluntary Life Insurance
  • Supplemental Insurance
  • Pet Insurance

Wellness Benefits:

  • Employee Assistance Program (EAP)
  • Bicycle Reimbursement
  • Discounted Fitness Memberships
  • Trauma Support Team

Cascadia is an Equal Opportunity Employer. We celebrate diversity and are committed to creating an inclusive environment for all employees. If you need assistance or an accommodation due to a disability, you may contact us at 503.963.7654.

This position is represented by a labor union.

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