It's time for the latest NENA E-News!

Your source for news, resources, and advocacy 

for your Employment Network (EN).

Conference Update

The NENA Board is thrilled to announce Kansas City, MO as the 2024 Annual National Training Conference location! 

Save the dates on your calendar!

September 23rd-25th 2024

A Note from the Marketing & Operations Interest Group 

SPAM Alert

Recently the NENA Board was made aware of emails circulating regarding selling contact information for 2023 NENA Conference Attendees. Please know that these are SPAM. Your best course of action is to delete them and report it to your IT department. 

News to Know

November 14, 2023

The intent of the Ticket to Work (Ticket) Program is for Employment Networks (ENs) to provide services and supports to the Ticketholder throughout the life of the Ticket. These services and supports should enable the Ticketholder to enter the workforce and maintain employment, with the goal of reducing their reliance on Social Security disability benefits and ultimately achieving financial independence. Ticketholder engagement is crucial to meeting these goals.

Two-way Communication Requirement

The Social Security Administration (SSA) is clarifying the requirements for a successful contact with a Ticketholder, both during the Initial Job Acquisition Phase and the Ongoing Support Phase of a Ticketholder’s progression toward their career goals. SSA is also clarifying the maximum time a Ticket may remain in assignment status without successful contact, including proper documentation of the contact.

ENs must maintain two-way communication with the Ticketholder in which the Ticketholder provides a response. Acceptable forms of contact are in-person meetings, telephone conversations, personalized email messages, voicemail messages received by the Ticketholder, personalized text messages, any form of computerized or telephone app communication (e.g., Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Google Meet, Skype, etc.), and personalized letters to and from individuals.

Documentation of contact with the Ticketholder should summarize key discussion points, including, but not limited to, issues identified, goal progression and other services provided. Discussion points should be clear and verifiable by third-party reviewers (such as the Ticket Program Manager (TPM) and SSA).

During the Initial Job Acquisition Phase (i.e., starting with Ticket Assignment through the end of the Phase 1 Milestone Period):

  • At a minimum, the EN shall follow up with the Ticketholder monthly to verify Ticketholder progress and maintain records of these contacts.
  • The EN shall make a minimum of three attempts in a one-month period to make two-way contact with the Ticketholder.
  • In the event the EN does not have a two-way conversation with the Ticketholder, or the Ticketholder requests no contact, the EN shall unassign the Ticket within 60 days from the date of initial contact attempt.

During the Ongoing Support Phase (i.e., Starting with the Phase 2 Milestone Period through Ticket Unassignment):

At a minimum, the EN shall contact and communicate with the Ticketholder quarterly to determine if the Ticketholder requires any ongoing employment supports and maintain records of these communications, including the method of communication.

  • The EN shall make a minimum of three attempts in a three-month period to make two-way contact with the Ticketholder.
  • In the event the EN does not have a two-way communication with the Ticketholder, or the Ticketholder requests no further contact, the EN shall unassign the Ticket within 180 days from the date of initial contact attempt.

Ticketholders Not Working Toward Self-Sufficiency

If a Ticketholder is not meeting the goals outlined in the Individual Work Plan (IWP), the EN shall discuss and document the following:

  • Whether the Ticketholder’s goals are still appropriate.
  • Whether the Ticketholder requires additional services and/or supports to achieve their goals. If required, the Ticketholder’s IWP must be amended.
  • Whether the Ticketholder needs new goals, and how appropriate the Ticketholder’s goals are based on the guidance in Part III, Section 4.A.2 above. If new goals are required, the Ticketholder’s IWP must be amended.
  • Unassignment of the Ticket if the Ticketholder no longer wants to work toward their established goals or revise their goals and is not pursuing self-sufficiency.

SSA has asked ENs to review their current Ticket assignments to ensure that they are within the parameters of this guidance. If ENs have not maintained the required contact with their Ticketholders as annotated in Part III, Section 4.A of the Ticket Program Agreement (TPA), ENs must either contact the Ticketholder in order to attain compliance with the TPA’s IWP revision, and contact requirements or unassign the Ticket.

TPM has extended the original date for random reviews to confirm compliance. TPM will begin incorporating random reviews to ensure adherence to this guidance into our current Service and Support reviews beginning January 2024, with the expectation that ENs began following these guidelines as of May 2023 as instructed in the original GovDelivery message. As such, SSA will send this message to ENs again in December of this year to remind them to prepare for random contact compliance checks during Service and Support reviews beginning in January 2024, as stated above. 

These requirements are annotated in Part III, Section 4 of the TPA.

Please direct any questions about this policy to

November 14, 2023

Social Security is conducting a survey to obtain feedback from beneficiaries about their familiarity with, and participation in, the Ticket to Work (Ticket) Program. The Ticket to Work Beneficiary Satisfaction Survey asks about beneficiaries’ awareness of the Ticket Program, their experience receiving services from an Employment Network (EN), and their work experience. Information from the survey will help Social Security improve the Ticket Program and ensure that Social Security is aware of the kinds of services that beneficiaries indicate they need.

The survey collects feedback about the Ticket Program from randomly selected beneficiaries who received letters inviting them to participate. If they choose to participate, beneficiaries have the option to complete the survey online (strongly encouraged) or via a telephone interview. (If you have Ticketholders who are deaf, hard of hearing, or have a speech disability and use Text Telephone (TTY), please let them know that they can use 7-1-1 to access Text Telephone (TTY) Telecommunications Access Services.)

Participation in this survey is voluntary and will not affect beneficiaries’ eligibility for benefits now or in the future. Social Security will safeguard the information provided and will use it for limited purposes, consistent with applicable Federal law, regulations and directives. Social Security will not include their name or other identifying information in any published reports or presentations about the survey.

This Frequently Asked Questions resource can help you address any questions you may receive from your Ticketholders. Please encourage your Ticketholders to complete the survey. You may do so by sending emails to your Ticketholders and including the information in newsletters and your social media. We created a toolkit to help.

Please note: Survey participants were chosen randomly and not everyone who receives Social Security disability benefits was invited to participate.

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Stay Connected

Add the following Upcoming Events to your calendar:

Bulletin Board

Work Incentives Training 

Interested in learning more about Work Incentives Planning? Opportunities are available!

Help Wanted Job Board

Does your member organization have an internal position available within your organization that you would like to post in the NENA E-News?

As a member courtesy, we will post your opening in our next E-News update one time.

Posting requirements:

• The posting must be for a specific, EN-related position within your organization (i.e., career specialist, career services provider)

• Email to submit your post

• Include the title, location, a brief description (25 words) and contact information on the form.

*Those interested in applying should contact the EN directly. NENA will have no further information about any posted positions.

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The National Employment Network Association (NENA) serves Employment Networks (ENs), American Job Centers (AJCs), State Vocational Rehabilitation Agencies (SVRAs) and other Stakeholders involved in the Social Security Administration's Ticket to Work and Self-Sufficiency Program.

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