Self-reported training needs of supported employment program managers in South Australia

Jerry Ford, Christine Ford

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    4 Citations (Scopus)


    Supported employment has been purported to offer a variety of economic and social opportunities for the employees who receive support services. However, the initiative also presents notable challenges for the professional staff who provide those services. The broad social context within which supported employment professionals find themselves is shifting rapidly. As a result, staff in supported employment settings must be responsive to changing environmental circumstances and to employees' needs, and be prepared to assume a variety of unique habilitative and business-oriented roles and responsibilities. Furthermore, they need to be cognisant of the dynamic nature of local and regionalised employment opportunities and sensitive to rapid changes occurring in the knowledge base and technology of supported employment service delivery. In the present study, 21 supported employment program managers in South Australia were surveyed to identify their priorities for training and support. Results indicated that the highest priority training needs identified by the respondents were focused on areas of systems development and evaluation, and technological skills. Few respondents reported training needs in areas related to direct service delivery (e.g., social integration, job matching, increasing worker productivity), even though most of these individuals spent part of their professional duties in this capacity, and few reported having previous experience in the area of supported employment direct service delivery. Findings are discussed in terms of training delivery and implications for further research.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)171-182
    Number of pages12
    JournalJournal of Intellectual and Developmental Disability
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - Jun 1998


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