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Vocational Rehabilitation Specialist I at Guardian Life Insurance in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania

Posted in General Business 30+ days ago.

Type: Full-Time

Job Description:

Position Summary
The goal of the vocational rehabilitation specialist (VRS) is to develop cost effective strategies to return the disabled individual to work, thereby maximizing the potential, and positively impacting, the lives of Guardian claimants. The VRS works with plan holders, employees and physicians to coordinate return to work opportunities through job accommodation early in the disability process. The VRS is responsible for developing long term rehab plans to assist in return to gainful work, as appropriate.

Candidate Responsibilities
The Vocational Rehabilitation Specialist 1 provides assessment of LTD, STD and Life claims, in order to determine claimants' level of functionality and provide evaluation of work capabilities or independence in activities of daily living, according to contractual definitions. The Vocational Rehabilitation Specialist 1 identifies claimants that may be eligible for return to work planning and assistance, transitional work, job modification, and/or vocational rehabilitation programs. The VR specialist 1 must possess a thorough working knowledge of medical diagnoses and treatment modalities, criteria supporting vocational feasibility, and a clear understanding of the interface of medical pathology and employment functionality. The Vocational Rehabilitation Specialist 1 works together with medical resources and external vocational rehabilitation vendors to create effective case management strategies within the boundaries of contractual definitions to return claimants to gainful work status.

Assess claimants medical, psychological condition, social and economic situation, aptitudes, work experience, restrictions and limitations, educational background, and behavioral/motivational factors to determine viability of and probability of success of vocational rehabilitation opportunities. Compare this assessment with policy rehabilitation provisions and make cost/benefit analysis to develop programs to assist individuals with disabilities in obtaining employment.

Maintain proactive dialogue with claimants, plan holders and treatment providers to formulate viable return to gainful work plans. Cost effective utilization of vendors to provide rehabilitative services to support program goal. Coordination with public services/governmental agencies to control costs and identify similar benefits.

Collaborate with professional resource staff and case managers to move toward appropriate plan to reduce the duration of disability and enhance probability of RTW. Serve as educational resource on vocational rehab aspect of claims. Providing timely and constructive feedback directly to all peers and to Bas regarding vocational aspect of claim, by educating parties involved in claim management regarding the extent of functional limitations and impact on ability to perform work activities.

Perform job v. occ assessments; perform transferrable skills analyses and labor market surveys to assist Claims department in benefit eligibility determinations. Compare medically supported restrictions and limitations with job/occ requirements to determine claimant's residual functionality. Proper use of investigative tools to support this determination, including Functional Capacity Exams.

Work with plan holders to identify/effectuate appropriate worksite modifications and transitional work plans to help return claimant to employment. Case management of part time work claims to increase full time return to work potential, as appropriate.

Reporting Relationships

  • This position reports to the PRT Team Leader who, in turn, reports to the Director of Professional Resources & Vendor Management.
Functional Skills

  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.

  • Ability to exercise independent & sound judgement in decision-making.

  • Excellent organizational and time management skills.

  • Must have ability to multi-task with the ability to manage work based on continually changing priorities.

  • Display self-motivation and be able to work independently.

  • Ability to work collaboratively with multiple professional disciplines and diverse populations.

  • Detail oriented.

  • Excellent information research skills.

Leadership Behaviors
In addition to the above requirements, a candidate for this position must lead by example and demonstrate the following behaviors (including but not limited to):

Uphold Guardian's commitment to ethical business practices.
Follow through on commitments by continuously striving to provide superior products and customer service.
Establish and maintain collaborative relationships that are mutually respectful.

Position Qualifications

  • Master's Degree in Rehabilitation Counseling or closely related field strongly preferred.

  • Receipt of, or eligibility for, certification in profession, such as Certified Rehabilitation Counselor (CRC)

  • Certified Disability Management Specialist (CDMS)

  • Certified Case Manager (CCM).


  • 5 or more years in actively providing vocational rehabilitation/case management services to disabled individuals in an insurance setting.

  • Case management experience strongly preferred.

  • Less than 10% of travel.

About Guardian
Every day, Guardian gives 26 million Americans the security they deserve through our insurance and wealth management products and services. Since our founding in 1860, our long-term view has helped our customers prepare for whatever life brings whether starting a family, planning for the future or taking care of employees. Today, we're a Fortune 250 mutual company and a leading provider of life, disability and other benefits for individuals, at the workplace and through government sponsored programs. The Guardian community of ~9000 employees and our network of over 2750 financial representatives is committed to serving with expertise when, where and how our clients need us. Our commitments rest on a strong financial foundation, which at year-end 2017 included $8.0 billion in capital and $1.6 billion in operating income. For more information, please visit or follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and YouTube.

Guardian® is a registered trademark of the Guardian Life Insurance Company of America.

Guardian is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will be considered for employment without regard to age, race, color, creed, religion, sex, affectional or sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, marital status, disability, military or veteran status, or any other classification protected by applicable law.