Innovative Guided Rehabilitation Employer Engagement Training (iGREET) Series

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Business Relations

The iGREET series was developed under the Program on Innovative Rehabilitation Training on Employer Engagement (PIRTEE) grant funded by the Rehabilitation Services Administration Grant (RSA) #H263C190012. The Series consists of the following four modules.

Module 1: Foundations of Employer Engagement

Lesson 1Understanding the Expectations of WIOA and The Dual-Customer Approach

January 5, 2023 (2-4 PM EST) 


  • Describe the philosophical and legislative evolution of employer engagement within the Vocational Rehabilitation agency, leading to opportunities established within WIOA

  • Includes the opportunities available for the Vocational Rehabilitation agency to collaborate as an invaluable workforce and economic development partner

  • Discuss how employer engagement (and subsequent economic development) activities better position the agency to facilitate employment for people with disabilities


Lesson 2- Ethical Considerations for Effective Employer Engagement

January 10, 2023 (2-4 PM EST) 


  • Effective employment engagement incorporates the professional code of ethics, including relationship boundaries, confidentiality, promoting equity, etc.

  • Incorporating the essential elements of ethics in employer engagement activities

  • Review and practice utilizing an ethical decision-making model when providing employer engagement services.


Lesson 3- Language and Communication for Effective Employer Engagement

January 17, 2023 (2-4 PM EST) 


  • Recognizing and effectively utilizing the power of language within employer engagement activities, but also with internal-agency communication and with external partners.

  • Understanding the elements of trust, and how those are integrated into effective communication

  • Recognizing and understanding additional language and communication considerations, including cultural competence and disability language and etiquette

  • Recognizing and understanding the power and necessity of business-friendly language.


Lesson 4- Preparing for, Coordinating, and Initiating Employer Engagement Activities

January 23, 2023 (2-4 PM EST) 


  • Preliminary research before employer contacts: understanding/finding labor market information; employer mapping

  • Professionalism in employer engagement: timing, language, listening, impressions

  • Initiating employer engagement: elevator pitch, identifying needs, answering questions and concerns.


Module 2: Developing and Maximizing Partnerships for Employer Engagement

Lesson 1- Tapping Into Internal Expertise And Connections

February 1, 2023 (2-4 PM EST) 


  • Understanding the agency’s employer engagement vision, as well as the process for sharing internal information, contacts, and responsibilities

  • Identify internal data collection methods and sharing

  • Explore internal networking, teams (including NET connection), communication strategies, and areas of expertise.


Lesson 2- Building an Employer Engagement Portfolio

February 7, 2023 (2-4 PM EST) 


  • Providing services to employers includes having a portfolio of services and areas of expertise (consultation) provided by the agency.

  • Identify agency-led training and consultation services to be offered, as well as areas that the agency could continue to grow.

  • Identify areas of knowledge that employer engagement staff can become knowledgeable, including employment laws and policies, resources, etc.

  • Identify agency messaging (marketing) opportunities, as well as areas of messaging expansion (website, publications, partner messaging, NET PSA, etc.)


Lesson 3- Cultivating External Partners 

February 14, 2023 (2-4 PM EST) 


  • Identify the variety of external partnerships, including workforce system partners, employer outreach and advocacy organizations, and business organizations that may support employer services.

  • Cultivate partnerships that fit the variety of opportunities available within economic development activities

  • Recognizing the steps to developing partnerships and how to move along the partnership continuum.  


Lesson 4- Leveraging Partnerships 

February 16, 2023 (2-4 PM EST) 


  • Identify opportunities to leverage and adapt partnerships to meet and fulfill employer and community goals (includes AJCs, Community Colleges, Community Rehabilitation Providers, trade associations, cultural entities, etc.)

  • In leveraging those partnerships, the learner will identify, organize, and promote the expertise and services provided by the various partner agencies for job fairs, work-based learning, employer recognition, sector partnerships, etc.

  • Identify characteristics of effective partnerships as strategies to repair relationships, if needed


Module 3: Individualized Employer Engagement

Lesson 1- Understanding the Employer Landscape

February 21, 2023 (2-4 PM EST) 


  • Effectively utilizing and maximizing labor market information (LMI) to understand business sectors in terms of who is represented in the community and who is growing/expanding

  • Utilize a variety of market and sector research opportunities (including TCI+)

  • Recognizing and responding to different types of businesses with appropriate and varying approaches  


Lesson 2- Every Business is Unique: Tailor Your Approach

February 28, 2023 (2-4 PM EST) 


  • Recognize the opportunities for individualizing services to business with the use of Individualized Business Plans (IBPs)

  • Identify and practice the steps for creating an IBP, including conducting a needs analysis, creating a proposal, and responding to changes and challenges

  • Developing cultural competency and humility, as well as recognizing personal politics and biases that may affect decision making

  • Being aware of and incorporating business cultural considerations, including size, location, values, leadership, and ownership.


Lesson 3- Environmental, Economic, and Other Challenging Situations in Employer Engagement

March 2, 2023 (2-4 PM EST) 


  • Identify strategies for adjusting employer engagement practices in response to environmental and economic challenges

  • Recognize opportunities in supporting employers to adjust work settings and expectations as a result of workplace and environmental conditions

  • Identify consultative resources and services that can be provided to support employers, including knowledge of disaster preparedness, lessons learned, assistive technology, and employment laws.

  • Developing employer services during economic downturns and times of little or no hiring


Module 4: Employment Models to Meet Business Needs

Lesson 1- Meeting Employer Needs while Achieving Competitive Integrated Employment (CIE)

March 7, 2023 (2-4 PM EST) 


  • Developing creative employment solutions to meet business needs includes developing a flexible mindset, nuanced assessment methods, and having developed trusting employer relationships

  • Understanding that the core of CIE incorporates customer informed choice and awareness of employment opportunities and strategies

  • Employers aren’t aware of CIE, but agency staff is using as a guidepost when developing economic opportunities

  • The employment practices included in this module are opportunities to meet hiring needs of employer needs in creative and unique ways.


Lesson 2- Meeting Employer Needs Through Work-Based Learning & Progressive Employment

March 15, 2023 (2-4 PM EST) 


  • Work-based Learning: key principles, types of learning opportunities, benefits to employers, and examples

  • Progressive Employment: essential elements, advantages to employers, and examples


Lesson 3- Meeting Employer Needs Through Apprenticeships & Career Pathways 

March 21, 2023 (2-4 PM EST) 


  • Pre-apprenticeship: essential elements, advantages to employers, and examples

  • Apprenticeship: essential elements, advantages to employers, and examples

  • On-the-Job Training: essential elements, advantages to employers, and examples

  • Career Pathways: essential elements, advantages to employers, and examples (including integration of educational instruction, workforce development, and vocational supports)