St. Vincent De Paul of San Francisco

Problem Solving Specialist

St. Vincent de Paul Society of San Francisco
Homeless Services – MSC South – Northern California’s Largest Homeless Shelter

JOB TITLE: Problem Solving Specialist
DEPARTMENT: Homeless Services – Coordinated Entry
SCHEDULE: 40 hours per week; some shifts will include evenings and weekends
LOCATION: 525 5th Street, San Francisco and roving locations
CLASSIFICATION: Non-exempt, Full-time, union
SUPERVISOR: Supportive Services Supervisor/ Manager of Problem Solving Services
SALARY/BENEFITS: $25 per hour, benefits: Kaiser paid in full for employee, voluntary dental, vision, life insurance, 403b retirement plan

To remove barriers to access, the Problem Solving Specialist team will serve single adults experiencing homelessness at the MSC South Access Point. In addition, the Problem Solving Specialist will provide roving services at other access point locations from time to time and as requested.

To remove barriers to access, the Problem Solving Specialist will serve single adults experiencing homelessness at remote locations in San Francisco including, for example, on the streets, at the jail or in congregate dining halls.

As a result of ECS/SVDP-SF continuing to collaborate with the Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing and other external stakeholders in launching this project, this job description may change both prior to hire, and after, as we continue to implement the best approach and services.

1. Screen and assess single adults experiencing homelessness using standardized tools, prioritization and referral protocols integrated into the ONE system.
2. Using a collaborative, client-centric, strengths-based, trauma-informed approach and a range of services, services techniques (such as mediation) and short-term assistance, support single adults in avoiding entry to shelter or the experience of street homelessness (e.g. helping those seeking services to safely remaining in their current living situation, or identify immediate alternate, safe housing arrangements).
3. Analyze information, problems, situations, practices or procedures in order to define the issues/challenges, relevant factors or concerns to accomplish success.
4. Engage participants in problem solving dialogue to assess for additional resources accessible within the participant’s own network.
5. Recognizing each service seeker’s unique strengths, support households to look for creative solutions that can be quickly implemented.
6. Must be able to problem solve a variety of complex issues, and always maintain a high level of professionalism while doing so.
7. Connect clients with appropriate partner agencies through referrals and follow-up to ensure connections were made.
8. Provide crisis intervention assistance as needed.
9. Based on the information collected during the assessment process and using the ONE System and ECS protocol, make authorized, prioritized referrals into housing programs and ECS Housing Navigation services.
10. Conduct immediate and longer-term follow up to ascertain the effectiveness of problem-solving activities.
11. Track and report progress and services for each client receiving problem-solving assistance and the project as a whole.
12. Keep accurate records and charts; enter required data in ONE System.
13. Maintain accurate and updated files on clients, services provided, and client progress made on City’s databases, as well as ETO database and other database systems as requested.
14. Draft monthly reports on service numbers, clients served, and achievements as well as other pertinent quantitative outcomes to Supportive Services Supervisor, Program Director, and other executive staff and Coordinated Entry external partners as requested.
15. Provide professional, accessible and culturally relevant support, advocacy and information to program participants.
16. Work within and promote the integrated services team model in an environment dedicated to harm reduction, recovery and wellness.
17. Serve as liaison to community-based and governmental service partners as requested.
18. Participate in staff training, staff meetings, and development activities as directed.
19. Engage effectively and constructively with the Manager of Problem Solving to make program refinements in the best interests of service users
20. Participate in ensuring confidentiality of participant information as legally required.
21. Perform other duties as assigned.

1. Master’s Degree in psychology, counseling social work, or related field PLUS at least 2 years’ experience closely related to the job description Or Bachelor’s degree in psychology, counseling social work Or related field PLUS at least 3 years’ experience closely related to the job description.
2. Substantial or demonstrated knowledge/experience working with individuals in crisis or unstable housing situations.
3. A strong knowledge of issues confronted by and sensitivity to adults with substance abuse, domestic violence, HIV/AIDS, mental health issues, history of trauma and co-occurring-diagnoses.
4. Demonstrated respect for, experience with and willingness to work with a diverse client population.
5. Deep knowledge and understanding of the resources available to homeless and low-income residents of San Francisco.
6. Articulate; exceptional verbal and written English communication.
7. Demonstrates the necessary attitudes, knowledge and skills to deliver culturally competent services and work effectively in cross-cultural situations.
8. Professional and discreet demeanor with good interpersonal skills. Ability to handle confidential information and use tact, respect, discretion and judgement.
9. Organize material, information, and/or people in a systematic way to optimize efficiency and minimize harm or duplication of efforts.
10. Collaborative work style, demonstrated ability to work independently and effectively as an individual and part of a team for successful outcomes.
11. Excellent computer skills and average ability in Microsoft Office software are required.
12. Knowledge of the ONE System preferred.
13. Ability to maintain professional boundaries and work collaboratively with clients, volunteers and staff.
14. Ability to be flexible and adapt to changes as our Coordinated Entry activities respond to lessons learned and emerging needs.
15. Commitment to the mission of St. Vincent de Paul Society of San Francisco and its values.

TB clearance and background check required upon job offer.

The St. Vincent de Paul Society of San Francisco is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer.

Pursuant to the San Francisco Fair Chance Ordinance, we will consider for employment qualified applicants with arrest and conviction.

Interested applicants please send a cover letter with your resume for consideration to:
Lois Dutton, HR Director by email: or fax: 415-977-1271