In comparison to the IRT approach, Person Centered Planning (PCP) involves much more intensive and personalized steps that take place at the beginning of the employment process using a toolbox of PCP methods. The tools used in PCP help individuals with disabilities to choose their own pathways to success. Three stages to PCP include:
- A thorough self-assessment and a personal profile created by the individual using self-assessment techniques and tools such as MAPs and Path
- An exploration of the types of jobs that fit the individual’s personal profile
- Putting the PCP into action to achieve the identified work goal
(Source: Cornell University, ILR School)
The workforce development system does not generally have the resources and/or capacity to perform the full range of person centered planning strategies for job seekers coming in for employment services. However, PCP may be a part of some individuals’ employment process with other agencies represented on the IRT. Examples of differences between PCP and IRT include:
PCP focuses on the exploration phase of employment, whereas IRTs focus on a team approach to supporting an individual in obtaining and maintaining employment.
Some job seekers may have an employment goal in mind prior to working with an IRT, whereas other job seekers will determine their work goal through the PCP process with other agencies (i.e., VR, Supported Employment Provider, and Mental Health Case Manager).
The work goal of the IRT could, in some cases, be the result of a self-assessment done as part of a PCP completed by either the individual him/herself or with the help of one or more of the partners in an IRT.
IRT members are likely to be limited to service providers who work as needed with the individual and will not include the full spectrum of people from a job seeker’s life that could be connected to a “Circle of Support”, which is part of the PCP process.
If the IRT is unsuccessful in assisting the job seeker meet his/her work goal, a PCP could be initiated at that point to re-assess the situation and explore possible variations on the work goal using PCP tools and strategies.
There may be some job seekers using an IRT who may not need to access any of the tools and strategies involved with PCP, since they may already have their work goal in mind and the training and/or work experience they need to be matched with an existing job independently. What these jobseekers are looking for is enhanced resource coordination and improved collaboration between the various disability and workforce agencies in order to secure successful employment and any needed supports and resources to maintain that employment, which is what the IRT can offer.
(Source: US Department of Labor, Office of Disability Employment Policy, October 19, 2007)