Posted 12.08.2021

Conor Crooks is a Job Match Supported Employment Officer and in his role he helps disabled people to obtain employment through the usage of Vocational Profiling, Job Searching and Employer engagement. Conor discusses life goals and career aspirations with Job Match participants to help them find ‘the job’ rather than ‘a job’ through our 1-to-1, person centred service we offer.

Here Conor tells the story of 'EG' who had been referred onto Job Match by a family member during the COVID-19 pandemic. They informed Conor that EG was a very intelligent young man and that they felt his talents and potential were being misdirected and unused where he was working.

When I reached out to EG, we discussed his current situation. EG had become unmotivated and somewhat stuck in his current employment, and needed help to regain his confidence, belief and rekindle that motivation he once had. Our journey began with EG informing me of his career goals, he wanted a job with progression and development opportunities, something which inspired him and allowed him to work independently with his ability being utilized and without the fear of his disability becoming a barrier.

Through the many strife’s and struggles we all encountered throughout the pandemic and the unfailingly haunting and inescapable times that greeted us each day, EG was determined to pursue a career path for the betterment of himself.

Conor and EG looked at different roles and considered: 

  • Was there scope for career progression and development within certain roles?
  • Was the job within EG’s preferred travel radius?
  • Most importantly was the employer willing to engage with EG regarding reasonable adjustments?

EG then informed me of 2 positions he wished to apply for - Clerical Officer with the Workforce Appeal and EO1 role within NI Civil Service (NICS). EG was excited with the prospect of working within either of these positions, we both were to be honest, but EG needed help with the interview process.

Conor consulted with our Employment Engagement Officer Michael Moore who advised Conor he was planning to host  a Workshop for the Assessment/Interview process re the EO1&2 positions.

EG was delighted and after attending the workshop said:

That was fantastic, really engaging and really helpful. It has prepared me so much for the upcoming interview and I found Michael to be extremely knowledgeable and friendly. Thank you so much.

EG applied the knowledge he acquired from the Workshop for the Workforce Appeal vacancy and he was successful in his application. EG started the role as a Clerical Officer, Band 2, 37.5 hours a week.

EG said:

I could not have done this without the help of Conor my SEO and Michael. They gave me the belief, confidence and motivation to reach for my personal goals and pursue my career aspirations and could not have done any more for me. My SEO made me feel inclusive of all decisions and offered advice and help whenever needed and cannot thank him enough.

Michael Moore added:

It is a great and profound feeling to know that the Workshops I deliver have made a decisive impact on EG and his successful pursuit of employment. It is fantastic that the deliverance of these Workshops are both fulfilling and rewarding to participants. I try to make the workshops specific to the roles involved, but also with additional information to prepare individuals for other opportunities too, and like with EG, I’m always happy to provide any other assistance to help them on their career journey.


Conor says - The late, great, actor and comedian Robin Williams once said:

I don’t know how much value I have in this universe, but I do know that if I have made a few people happier than they had have been without me, and as long as I know that, I am as rich as I need to be.”

With the struggle between integrity and duty, pride, and compromise, stubborn hope reflects upon us all and we must remind ourselves that good news stories may be fleeting, they may be few and far between, but we must press on. They may seem implausible and idealistic, but it is practical, we have witnessed these moments and our participants, like EG, are our motivation.

If you need help to find paid work contact Conor 07813 723510, [email protected].

Read more about Conor and the team and how they can help disabled people in their job preparation and job search.