Chapter 2. Doing the Job of Service Coordination

Module 2.1: The New Service Coordination Model

As a service coordinator, your role is to manage and provide access to necessary supportive services in the community, provide case management services as needed and requested, and develop programs and resources that support wellness for the entire resident population. See below for a list of what service coordinators are and are not.

Service coordinators ARE:

  • Advocates on behalf of their residents
  • Resources for residents on available community-based services, and can answer any questions
  • Facilitators of wellness and other educational programs for residents
  • Motivators who empower residents to be as independent as possible
  • Monitors who follow up with services provided to residents
  • Champions who encourage residents to adhere to a healthy lifestyle
  • Educators who provide trainings and assistance to residents and other property staff
  • Advisors who can assist residents with building support networks and consult with tenant organizations and resident management
  • Referral agents who connect residents to service providers who can meet their needs
  • Community partners to assist residents with accessing community-based services

Service coordinators ARE NOT:

  • Direct service providers
  • Recreation or activity directors
  • Duplicators of existing community services
  • Distributors of medical aids, medications, or medical advice
  • Handlers of residents’ funds
  • Managers or leasing agents
  • Drivers of residents
  • Organizers or leaders of resident associations or councils
  • Powers of Attorney for residents or individuals who sign checks for residents

Changes in the Role of Service Coordinators

If you have been a service coordinator for some time, you have seen how the role in HUD-assisted multifamily housing has evolved over time. In the past, many service coordinators understood their role as providing residents with basic information and referral services. Many elderly individuals experience complex needs, and we have learned how important it is for service coordinators to play a proactive case management role. The graphic below identifies a variety of services that today’s service coordinators might assist residents with accessing and engaging in.

Watch this video to hear one practitioner’s reflections on the changing role of the service coordinator.

Core Functions of Service Coordinators

All service coordinators should fulfill the following core functions. This module addresses each in more detail.

  • Conducting comprehensive, non-clinical assessments of residents for wellness and social needs;
  • Helping residents to identify, access, and coordinate services (such as personal care services), including monitoring of services provided and follow-up communication with service providers;
  • Monitoring the receipt and follow through of services, including encouraging and motivating residents to engage with providers and participate in their own care/services management;
  • Proactively developing and arranging educational/preventative health programs and services for residents;
  • Developing and sustaining partnerships with the Area Agency on Aging, the Aging and Disability Resource Center, community-based supportive service providers and other community stakeholders; and
  • Maintaining an up-to-date resource directory with all local service providers and making it available for resident use.


Please complete this quiz before you proceed to the next module. To take the quiz, use the arrow keys or click the correct answer choice. If you answer incorrectly, you will be able to try again until you select the correct response. Scores will not be recorded.

1. Which of the following activities is not part of a service coordinator’s role?

U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development © 2018

HUD Service Coordinators in Multifamily Housing Program