Free
Poster Session
Issue Date: July 2015
Published Online: July 01, 2015
Updated: April 30, 2020
Current Practices in Job Matching for Individuals With Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
Author Affiliations
  • The Ohio State University
  • The Ohio State University
  • The Ohio State University
Article Information
Pediatric Evaluation and Intervention / Assessment/Measurement
Poster Session   |   July 01, 2015
Current Practices in Job Matching for Individuals With Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, July 2015, Vol. 69, 6911500099. https://doi.org/10.5014/ajot.2015.69S1-PO4089
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, July 2015, Vol. 69, 6911500099. https://doi.org/10.5014/ajot.2015.69S1-PO4089
Abstract

Date Presented 4/17/2015

Job matching is the collaborative, data-based, decision-making process used by transition teams to determine the best fit between an individual’s abilities and preferences and the job’s environmental and occupational demands. Results support use of consistent, data-driven, person-centered processes.

SIGNIFICANCE: Individuals with disabilities are employed at rates significantly lower than those without disabilities. Job matching has been an integral part of supported employment practices for individuals with disabilities for more than 30 yr. However, no research has examined the specific practices of key stakeholders who make job-matching decisions with, or on behalf of, individuals with disabilities.
INNOVATION: This research is the first to examine the practices of key stakeholders who make job-matching decisions with, or on behalf of, individuals with disabilities. This research project was designed to address the following research questions: (1) What are the current practices in job matching/placement for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities? (2) What are the outcomes of current job matching/placement practices? (3) What tools do professionals use to inform job matching/placement decisions?
Roughly 3% of the American population, an estimated 8 million people, live with an intellectual disability. Most individuals with intellectual disabilities experience ongoing, low levels of employment. To develop and implement reliable systems for systematically matching individuals with disabilities to work in integrated environments, current job placement and matching practices must be understood in greater depth.
METHOD: In this study, we used a mixed-methods sequential explanatory research design to examine the practices of key stakeholders involved in job matching. To gather data, we used a national survey of key stakeholders as well as focus groups conducted within the Midwestern United States. Analyses took place at a major Midwestern research university. Participants included professional and consumer key stakeholders involved in the job-matching process.
Quantitative and narrative data were collected by survey during the first phase of the study. Narrative data were organized by question number for analysis. A second, qualitative phase included a multiple-case study design using focus groups to evaluate the perspectives of key professional and consumer stakeholder groups. Focus groups were recorded using audiovisual equipment and were transcribed verbatim. Textual data were checked for accuracy by a researcher who was not the transcriptionist.
The qualitative analysis was performed using principles of phenomenology and the constant comparative method. Specifically, three analysts (1) read all narrative responses and focus group transcripts, (2) systematically coded data via the process of horizontalization, (3) verified and refined codes by performing interrater checks, (4) collapsed codes into clusters of meaning, (5) iteratively developed a thematic structure, and (6) prepared textural and structural descriptions of the job-matching process.
RESULTS: Integration of quantitative and qualitative data revealed that (1) job matching is a collaborative process, (2) stakeholders consider many different types of data when job matching, (3) current practices in job matching are variable and lack consistency, and (4) outcomes of the job-matching process are poorly defined.
CONCLUSIONS: Additional resources are needed to support the efforts of stakeholders who make job-matching decisions with, or on behalf of, individuals with disabilities. In the absence of formal resources, key stakeholders who utilize a collaborative, consistent, data-driven process for job matching are most likely to observe positive outcomes.