Supported Employment/Individual Placement and Support

Supported Employment/Individual Placement and Support (SE/IPS) is an evidence-based practice that helps people with mental illness and other disabilities identify and acquire part-time or full-time jobs of their choice in the community with rapid job-search and placement services. It emphasizes that work is not the result of treatment and recovery but integral to both.

SE/IPS is very different from traditional vocational rehabilitation (voc rehab). It emphasizes consumer choice as well as time-unlimited and individualized follow-along services, among other components that are described below.


Research shows that 60 to 70 percent of people with severe mental illness want to work. Research also shows that Supported Employment responds effectively to consumer needs.

Supported Employment,
the evidence-based practice
 VS. Traditional Vocational Rehabilitation

• 58 percent of the people receiving these services are employed in competitive jobs in their local communities.


• Only 21 percent of the people receiving these services find competitive jobs in the community.

For more information, see Bond (2004), Becker & Drake (2003), and Drake (1999) in Resources below.


Contact us for SE/IPS technical assistance (consulting & training). Click here.

SE Increases

  • Employment in competitive jobs
  • Number of hours worked
  • Amount of income earned in competitive jobs

SE Decreases

  • Unemployment
  • Dependence upon public systems of care
  • Symptoms of mental illness
  • Hospitalizations
  • Stigma in the community about mental illness

Competitive Employment Improves

  • Self-esteem
  • Self-management of mental health symptoms
  • Independent living
  • Autonomy


1.) Zero-Exclusion Policy

2.) Integrated Employment & Treatment

3.) Competitive Jobs

4.) Rapid Job-Search

5.) Systematic Job Development

6.) Time-Unlimited Support

7.) Consumer Preferences

8.) Benefits Planning

+ Download free PDF of SE/IPS Core Principles mini-poster (click here).

+ Order printed copies of SE/IPS Core Principles mini-poster (click here).

+ Share with team members and stakeholders.


Our Center provides technical-assistance services (consulting and training) for SE/IPS and for the integration of employment services with Assertive Community Treatment (ACT) through our Center of Excellence (CCOE) initiative.


Recommended SE/IPS resources produced by our Center:

+ More SE/IPS resources in our database.

Recommended Benefits Advocacy & Planning resources produced by our Center:

+ More Benefits Advocacy & Planning resources in our database.

+ More information about Benefits Advocacy & Planning technical assistance.



1.) Gary R. Bond (2004). Supported Employment: Evidence for an Evidence-Based Practice. Psychiatric Rehabilitation Journal, v27, n4, p345-359.

2.) Deborah R. Becker and Robert E. Drake, MD (2003). A Working Life for People with Severe Mental Illness. New York: Oxford University Press, Inc.

3.) Robert E. Drake, Guest Editor. (1998). Supported Employment: A Special Issue of Psychiatric Rehabilitation Journal. Psychiatric Rehabilitation Journal. Summer, v22, n1.


There are treatment characteristics (components) and organizational characteristics of the SE/IPS model that are called fidelity domains. These domains encourage service systems and organizations to develop holistic integrated program structures and interventions. These domains also provide a structure for a continuous quality-improvement process that addresses multiple outcomes. SE/IPS facilitates systems change, organizational change, and clinical change when it is implemented with fidelity.


Supported Employment/Individual Placement and Support (SE/IPS), the evidence-based practice, was created and is studied by researchers Deborah R. Becker, MEd, CRC, Robert E. Drake, MD, PhD, Gary Bond, PhD, and their colleagues at the Dartmouth Psychiatric Research Center of Dartmouth Medical School.

The Dartmouth PRC has provided leadership for national implementation of SE/IPS via the Johnson & Johnson-Dartmouth Community Mental Health Program.