Best Practice Guide

Abilities Manitoba received government funding to unify recruitment efforts in the Direct Support Profession. As part of this work, we asked a number of you what’s been successful with recruitment, and what hasn’t.

Because the Direct Support Profession touches every region of Manitoba and every one of the nearly 100 organizations in our field works a little differently, we heard about a diverse range of strategies. We know some of you may want to put posters up in the community — and some of you head straight to Instagram. Some of you may want to visit job fairs or high schools and recruit volunteers, and some of you can afford a media buy online.

Whatever’s been working for you, we want to help make it easier. We also want to help everyone feed into a stronger reputation for the profession. And so, we’ve created a brand for the Direct Support Profession in Manitoba and a campaign identity we now want to share with you, so everyone can use it to promote working in this field and at their organization.

About the Brand

We wanted our marketing efforts to improve impressions of the Direct Support Profession and to promote what folks who are familiar with the field already know: it’s a professional, challenging, rewarding and meaningful line of work. It takes trust built on both sides and the ability to form authentic relationships.

So, we built out a brand for Direct Support Profession Manitoba that could help us convey the professionalism of the industry and make people proud to be a part of it.

As with all brands, the visual identity comes with a set of rules to guide your use of the brand. We’d encourage anyone who’s going to use the campaign visuals to get familiar with the provided guidelines. You will also need to download the fonts, logos and assets to make any customizations to the designs.

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Two people playing basketball outside

However you wish to use them, the assets will give you a great starting point to make your own recruitment efforts a little easier.

Now, it’s all yours.
 

In the content that follows, we’ve provided assets that can be tweaked to include wording about roles at your organization and adapted for your use. For the customizable templates, we’ve included advice on where to place your organization’s logo alongside the DSP brand.

If you can’t meet the provided requirements, we don’t recommend combining your own organization’s logo with the DSP brand, but we’d still encourage you to use the assets. Using these visuals consistently will help build up the reputation of the DSP profession across all organizations. (And don’t worry, when you put your contact information on these assets or when your brand promotes it through your own social accounts, people will know it’s you!)

Included in this package are assets to help simplify creating recruitment assets like social posts, print posters, digital ads, and tradeshow banners. We’ve provided assets that are complete and ready to post or print, as well as assets that you can adapt to make your own.

Here’s what’s included:

white DSP logo on light teal circle

Print Posters

 

3 x simple 8.5” x 11” designs that can be printed and posted on community bulletin boards

  • Design template with customizable text and space to add your logo

  • Completed design files if you do not wish to customize

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white DSP icon for growth on coral circle

Social Posts

 

  • Story & in-feed graphics
  • Suggested captions (as applicable)

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white DSP icon for flexibility on navy circle

Job Description and Emails

 

Templated copy to post a position and guide people through the application process

  • Templated job description
  • 3 x Email copy to keep folks engaged and guide them through the application process

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white DSP logo sideways on yellow circle

Greeting Cards

 

Greeting cards to promote employee retention within your organization

  • Design templates for acknowledging employee milestones, holidays or recognizing great work
  • Blank cards to fill out with your own custom greetings

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white DSP logo for life skills on yellow circle

Display Ads

 

Display ads promoting a role in the Direct Support Profession sized for typical website distribution

  • 4 x Design templates (2 creative options each in most common web sizes)
  • Completed design files if you do not wish to customize

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white DSP icon for advocacy on purple circle

Tradeshow Banners

 

  • 2 x Design templates
  • 2 x Completed design files if you do not wish to customize

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white DSP icon for support on light teal circle

Blogs

 

Feature stories on various DSPs highlighting their connection to their work

  • 4 x DSP profiles
  • 1 x Interactive quiz to help people determine if they should work part-time, full-time or casual in this field

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Display Ads

 

Some of you may have the opportunity to place image ads through the Google Ad Network or via a partnership with a local community news site, for instance. We’ve provided ad templates in some of the most common web sizes, as well as a swath of display ads sized for the campaign we ran for this initiative. Want to learn more about running your own Google Ad campaign? Click here for some advice to get set up.

In this package, you’ll find two different web ad templates which are suitable for use as a digital Google or website advertisement.

  • The first set of ad graphics have dimensions of 300 x 250 pixels.
  • The second set of ad graphics have dimensions of 728 x 90 pixels.
DSP digital ad mockup

Web Ad Template 1: 300 x 250

  • Upload your reverse (all white only) logo as a high-resolution PNG with a transparent background.
  • Place your logo in the ‘logo here’ location indicated in the design file.
  • Adjust your logo’s size to match the size of the DSP logo but maintain the proper dimensions—don’t squash or stretch it!
  • In your design file, you’ll see areas in the headlines or body copy that are reserved for you to enter your organization name. Fill in the information wherever indicated within the design file.
  • Keep the font style and size consistent. Do not add a new font or overlay different text. We have included the necessary fonts in your design package, which you can download for free use.
  • Double-check that your organization name is spelled correctly, with proper capitalization.
  • Export your file as a high-resolution jpeg.
  • Follow the instructions for setting up a digital Google advertisement by following the link listed above or share this with your advertising partner for distribution.

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Web Ad Template 2: 728 x 90

  • Upload your reverse (all white only) logo as a high-resolution PNG with a transparent background.
  • Place your logo in the ‘logo here’ location indicated in the design file.
  • Adjust your logo’s size to match the size of the DSP logo but maintain the proper dimensions—don’t squash or stretch it!
  • In your design file, you’ll see areas in the headlines or body copy that are reserved for you to enter your organization name. Fill in the information wherever indicated within the design file.
  • Keep the font style and size consistent. Do not add a new font or overlay different text. We have included the necessary fonts in your design package, which you can download for free use.
  • Double-check that your organization name is spelled correctly, with proper capitalization.
  • Export your file as a high-resolution jpeg.
  • Follow the instructions for setting up a digital Google advertisement by following the link listed above.

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Social Posts

 

Social media is one of the best ways to provide engaging content to your target audiences where they like to consume information. You can use all the assets we’ve already built a successful campaign around (in the Google sheet linked here), as well as some additional posts we’ve prepared for you to share organically.

In this package, you will find the following:

  • 1 x Instagram story gallery (a series of images) promoting the “DSP Quiz.”
  • 2 x Instagram reel (video) files — one promoting a DSP Testimonial Video, the other promoting our Infrequently Asked Question Videos, plus accompanying copy.
  • 2 x Facebook/Instagram image posts — one promoting our blog feature, and the other encouraging users to find jobs, plus accompanying copy.
mockup of DSP social media post

Instagram Story: DSP Quiz

  • Before uploading the graphic to your company Instagram, ensure that the link to the DSP Quiz is listed in your “link in bio.” You can achieve this by using a platform like LinkTree which provides a list of links from which users can select. Add the DSP quiz to your LinkTree, plus any other relevant links you’d like to provide users.
  • Upload your graphic as a story, not as a permanent post. The dimensions of this graphic are only suitable for stories. Posts should typically be squares, and stories are long and narrow in portrait orientation.
  • Your story post will expire in 24 hours. If you’d like it to remain visible and accessible on your page, create a story highlight, so users can click and view the story again.

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Instagram Reel 1: Testimonial Video

  • Before uploading the video to your company Instagram, ensure that the link to find available jobs is listed in your “link in bio.” You can achieve this by using a platform like LinkTree which provides a list of links from which users can select. Add the job posting to your LinkTree, plus any other relevant links you’d like to provide users.
  • Upload your video as a reel. This is a video that remains on your public profile permanently, and it is more likely to pop up in people’s feeds as they are browsing.

We have provided copy, which you can customize with your company and location info. You can use this copy or create your own if you’d prefer.

  • If you choose to use the provided copy, remove any of the following labels within the text: Post Caption, CTA, Hashtags.
  • You’ll see areas in the body copy that are reserved for you to enter your company name or town name. Fill in the information wherever indicated in the caption.
  • Include the provided hashtags at the end of your copy, and feel free to add any of your own relevant to your location and business. Do not exceed over 10 hashtags.
  • If you choose to write your own copy, don’t get too lengthy—try to mirror the length in the template provided. Remember to add a CTA (Call to Action) such as “Click the link in bio to find available jobs now!”

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Facebook/Instagram Post Template 1: Blog Feature

  • Before uploading the graphic to your company Instagram, ensure that the link to the blog post is listed in your “link in bio.” You can achieve this by using a platform like LinkTree which provides a list of links from which users can select. Add the blog link to your LinkTree, plus any other relevant links you’d like to provide users.
  • Upload the graphic as a permanent post. If possible, link your Instagram and Facebook accounts, so when you post to Instagram, you can automatically cross-post to Facebook without having to start over and upload it again.

We have provided copy, which you can customize with your company and location info. You can use this copy or create your own.

  • If you choose to use the provided copy, remove any of the following labels within the text: Post Caption, CTA, Hashtags.
  • You’ll see areas in the body copy that are reserved for you to enter your company name or town name. Fill in the information wherever indicated within the caption.
  • Include the provided hashtags at the end of your copy, and feel free to add any of your own relevant to your location and business. Do not exceed over 10 hashtags.
  • If you choose to write your own copy, don’t get too lengthy—try to mirror the length in the template. Try to keep the most important information within the first 127 characters. Remember to add a CTA (Call to Action) such as “Click the link in bio to read the full blog article!”

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Instagram Reel 2: Infrequently Asked Questions

  • Before uploading the graphic to your company Instagram, ensure that the link to find available jobs is listed in your “link in bio.” You can achieve this by using a platform like LinkTree which provides a list of links from which users can select. Add the job posting to your LinkTree, plus any other relevant links you’d like to provide users.
  • Upload the vertical version of the video with captions as a reel. This is a video that remains on your public profile permanently, and it is more likely to pop up in people’s feeds as they are browsing.

We have provided copy, which you can customize with your company and location info. You can use this copy or create your own.

  • If you choose to use the provided copy, remove any of the following labels within the text: Post Caption, CTA, Hashtags.
  • You’ll see areas in the body copy that are reserved for you to enter your company name or town name. Fill in the information wherever indicated within the design file.
  • Include the provided hashtags at the end of your copy, and feel free to add any of your own relevant to your location and business. Do not exceed over 10 hashtags.
  • If you choose to write your own copy, don’t get too lengthy—try to mirror the length in the template. Try to keep the most important information within the first 127 characters. Remember to add a CTA (Call to Action) such as “Click the link in bio to find available jobs now!”

DOWNLOAD

Facebook/Instagram Post Template 1: Find Jobs

  • Before uploading the graphic to your company Instagram, ensure that the link to find available jobs is listed in your “link in bio.” You can achieve this by using a platform like LinkTree which provides a list of links from which users can select. Add the job posting to your LinkTree, plus any other relevant links you’d like to provide users.
  • Upload the graphic as a permanent post. If possible, link your Instagram and Facebook accounts, so when you post to Instagram, you can automatically cross-post to Facebook without having to start over and upload it again.

We have provided copy, which you can customize with your company and location info. You can use this copy or create your own.

  • If you choose to use the provided copy, remove any of the following labels within the text: Post Caption, CTA, Hashtags.
  • You’ll see areas in the body copy that are reserved for you to enter your company name or town name. Fill in the information wherever indicated within the design file.
  • Include the provided hashtags at the end of your copy, and feel free to add any of your own relevant to your location and business. Do not exceed over 10 hashtags.
  • If you choose to write your own copy, don’t get too lengthy—try to mirror the length in the template. Try to keep the most important information within the first 127 characters. Remember to add a CTA (Call to Action) such as “Click the link in bio to find available jobs now!”

DOWNLOAD

Tradeshow Banners

 

We heard that some of you find success presenting to high schools or joining job fairs where you may be able to reach many people interested in finding a job at once. To stand out at these types of events, high-quality visuals like pop-up banners can help invite people to engage with you and cut through the noise of other competing job opportunities.

In this package, you will find two designs that you can adapt or send straight to print for in-person promotions. Find a local print shop or signage company who can produce high-quality banners that will last through multiple uses.

mockup of DSP tradeshow banner

2 x Banners: 24” X 72” (Print-Ready)

  • These two designs are complete and direct people to the general directsupportmb.ca site to learn more about the profession. Consider using these to promote this career path generally, and you can include handouts or business cards at your table for any specific jobs to fill at your organization.

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2 x Banners: 24” X 72” (Templated)

  • You’ll see an area in the copy reserved for you to enter your company website URL. Fill in the information wherever indicated within the Adobe design file.
  • Keep the font style and size consistent. Do not add a new font or overlay different text. We have included the necessary fonts in your design package, which you can download for free use.
  • Export your file as a high-resolution PDF so it’s ready for the print shop.

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Pro tip:

 

The printer you choose may have slightly different size specifications for banners. They will likely have the capability to adapt the working files for their needs and can likely even handle small copy changes if you provide them with the info and the fonts!

Job Description and Email Copy

 

We interviewed several DSPs past and present to come up with what’s truly unique about a job in this field, and all the qualitative and quantitative benefits.

Because so many of you need to recruit to this field regularly and manage the costs and labour associated with recruitment, we wanted to pool some of this information together to make it easier to invite people to this field, as well as to hold their interest during the application and record-checking process.

In this package, you’ll find:

  • Templated job description to help you post a position
  • 3 x email copy to keep folks engaged and guide them through the application process (with suggested milestones for when to send these out)

DOWNLOAD

woman pushing man in wheelchair outside

Greeting Cards

 

Many of you mentioned difficulty retaining staff. While some turnover is always going to be expected, we want to encourage simple ways you can make your staff feel appreciated. Be sure to acknowledge milestones like work anniversaries and send them a thank-you when they’ve gone the extra mile.

Many people will find the most rewarding part of this job the connection they’ve made with those they support. When possible, consider getting their help acknowledging their DSP with a holiday best-wishes or special thank-you.

In this package, you will find three different greeting cards, each including artwork for the front of the card, and templated text or a blank side for a custom greeting.

For best results, send these files to a print shop so they can print these on thick, glossy paper or card stock. We’ve created single page, 4” x 6” double-sided cards for optimal ease printing these on an office printer (without crop marks) or print shop (with crop marks).

mockup of DSP greeting card

Card 1: Work Anniversary (You make every day worth celebrating)

  • Send this card to employees when they reach a yearly milestone of employment with your company.
  • Leave enough space inside the card for all the relevant people to write a custom message and sign.
  • If possible, print on heavier paper, preferably cover stock.

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Card 2: Non-Denominational Winter Holiday (Wishing you all things merry & bright)

Send this card to employees in early December.

  • Leave enough space inside the card for all the relevant people to write a custom message and sign.
  • If you know what winter holiday your employee celebrates, consider customizing your message to include the appropriate wishes.
  • If possible, print on heavier paper, preferably cover stock.

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Card 3: General Acknowledgement (You’re doing amazing things)

Send this card to employees whenever you think they deserve a shoutout for all their amazing work!

  • Leave enough space inside the card for all the relevant people to write a custom message and sign.
  • Consider prompting the people supported or their families to complete this when their DSP has gone the extra mile.
  • If possible, print on heavier paper, preferably cover stock.

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Blogs

 

It’s hard to summarize the work DSPs do, because each of the roles looks so different. We worked with 4 different DSPs to profile the type of work they do and the connections they’ve made, whether it’s at a day program, out in the community, at someone’s work, home, or school—full-time, part-time or casually.

In this package, you will find 4 different blog profiles highlighting:

  • Annalisa and Gordie’s connection getting out and socializing at The Forks, inspiring Annalisa to be more fearless
  • Josel and Cory’s growth story, bonding over basketball and building Cory’s confidence to pursue a romantic relationship
  • Wai Han and Eric’s unlikely connection made over Cantonese words and different cuisines
  • Leslie and Julio’s 20 years spent building Julio’s strength and independence at work
  • An interactive quiz to help people determine if they should work part-time, full-time or casual in this field

Where to post:

  • If you have a blog section on your website, feel free to post these articles with credit given to the Direct Support Profession Manitoba campaign.
  • Consider linking to these stories from job postings or company newsletters to help further sell the benefits and the diversity of experiences enjoyed in the Direct Support Profession.
  • Share the blog links through social media using a photo from the campaign or the provided social media templates.
  • You may also wish to send the quiz to anyone interested in pursuing a career as a DSP so they can see the various ways they can lend their skills to the profession.

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two people sitting on wooden chairs drinking coffee outside