The Employer Employment Network (EN) model is defined in the Ticket to Work program (Ticket program) as a business model that includes the EN serving as the beneficiary's employer or an employer's agent. An employer's agent is described as a group or individual who is working with an employer under an agreement or other arrangement to locate and place suitable job candidates with that employer. The Social Security Administration's (Social Security’s) EN application package, i.e., the EN Request for Application (RFA), requires that Employer ENs:
- identify the jobs they have available;
- pay wages at or above the amount that Social Security defines as Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA);
- identify where the EN plans to place beneficiaries;
- describe how the EN plans to provide beneficiaries with the supports and opportunities to permit them to keep a job that pays SGA-level earnings.
The business plan submitted by a perspective Employer ENs must include:
- a promise to maintain an active program for hiring and providing ongoing services and supports to their workers with disabilities;
- a plan for placing Supplemental Security Income (SSI)/Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) beneficiaries in jobs that pay at or exceed the annual SGA amount;
- a provision for paying SSI/SSDI beneficiaries in a timely manner for work performed.
The salaries paid to beneficiaries that Employer ENs employ cannot be contingent on the EN's receipt of Milestone or Outcome payments under the Ticket program. Earnings, for purposes of the Employer EN's request for payment under the Ticket program, means actual wages paid to, and received by, a beneficiary prior to the EN's payment request.