My position as an Employer Liaison/Job Developer, as per our Job Development Model, is to assist people who experience difficulties accessing the job market. Many candidates experience difficulties accessing the job market as a result of hurdles/obstacles quantified as barriers to employment.
The most interesting part of my job at Agilec by far, has been to Job Develop for clients/candidates who experience barriers to employment. I find this particularly interesting because I can also recognize times during my career when I was considered an individual who faced barriers to employment. Quite ironic, I would say. I often see myself when meeting candidates and preparing to meet an employer. My heart skips a beat each and every time, I find it exciting! It is exciting because I understand our candidates’ position, I’ve been there myself. I empathize, reverse roles, and try to think back to the times I had to go on job interviews, or had to meet an employer for the very first time. Advocating for our candidates puts us in the mix of things; we provide and obtain information from employers, we explore uncertainties, we manage views/opinions, and create a match. No smoke and mirrors, however focussing on our candidates’ strengths. Thinking back, I believe this has worked for me in the past.
Barriers are perceptions and notions, often utilized by employers to predict how successful and productive an individual can be as part of their organization or company. Job Developers do not necessarily have to experience barriers to employment as per the classic definitions, in order to be effective in this profession. Nonetheless, experiencing the two sides of the coin offers a valuable and unique perspective.
by Marcus Alexandre, EL / Job Developer at Agilec