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The single biggest barrier to implementation of Ohio’s developmental disability system’s strategic objectives is the lack of an available direct support workforce. Reducing waiting lists, county board divestiture of day services, ICF downsizing, and developmental center downsizing all depend ultimately on an increasing number of quality direct support professionals (DSPs).

OPRA is launching DSPOhio in direct response to Ohio’s developmental disabilities system’s number one challenge-the workforce crisis. DSPOhio is a unique statewide DSP recruitment effort that combines data-driven, targeted DSP branding and recruitment advertising with an on-line direct link that connects potential employees with provider employers. To effectively recruit DSPs on an ongoing basis a process is required to increase awareness of and familiarity with the role of DSP. This moves people to consider it as a career option, apply for a job and hopefully enjoy their career as a DSP so much that they stay in the role, perhaps advance in their career and become an advocate for the role with others (see graph).

DSPOhio consists of five major components:

Branding. Through the use of continual multi-media purchases, DSPOhio will continuously build awareness and understanding of the term DSP, the rewarding nature inherent in the work and the potential career opportunities available. See below for examples of media buy content.

Connectivity. Using a data-driven, integrated marketing communications strategy, DSPOhio focuses on provider identified employee demographics and offer interested employees a simple way to immediately connect with prospective employers.

Website. The DSPOhio website will be the conduit between interested employee and provider employer. The website will also offer more in-depth information on the role and responsibilities of a DSP, testimonials, videos and will allow provider specific information.

Sustainability.  DSPOhio is a subscription-based service open to all DD providers. The first year of DSPOhio subscriptions is currently free thanks to generous support from multiple County Boards of Developmental Disabilities and the Ohio Developmental Disabilities Council. After the first year, each subscribing provider will pay an annual fee with an opportunity for advertising. Vendors will also have an opportunity to advertise. Revenues from subscriptions and advertising will be reinvested back into multi-media buys (and the cost of operations) thereby ensuring an ongoing year after year effort. The more revenue from subscriptions the more power in the media buys. 

Metrics. All components of DSPOhio are data-driven and measurable allowing for continual learning and adaptation to become more and more sophisticated and effective. Effectiveness can be assessed by looking at how paid media is leveraged to drive people to the website. Other metrics include new visitors to the website, time on site, video views, video completion rates, what pages people visit, number of lead generation forms completed, etc. Finally, it will be necessary for subscribing providers to share how many website visitors turn into applicants and how many applicants are hired as DSPs.  

How does DSPOhio work?

 

Below are DRAFT billboard ideas used in the media buys:

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Below are marketing videos that providers can use on their website, social media, or other platforms.

To view the videos, click on the links below. The links will take you to another website where you can download the videos to your computer. 

Video 1

Video 2

For more information on the project or to provide input on the materials, please contact OPRA Director of Government Relations Jeff Davis (Jdavis@opra.org).

 

Pictures from Day 1 of video shooting:

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For more information, please contact OPRA Director of Government Relations Jeff Davis
(jdavis@opra.org or 614-579-9957).

This project is being funded through an Ohio DD Council grant.

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