All inmates are required to maintain a regular work assignment. Many work assignments are controlled through a performance pay system, which provides monetary payment for work. Federal Prison Industries has a separate pay scale. The Counselor approves work changes and sees they are posted on the Daily Change Sheet. Once assigned to a job, an inmate must remain in that assignment for 90 days before requesting a change of assignment.
Institution maintenance jobs are usually the first assignment an inmate receives. These might include work as a Food Service worker, a unit orderly, or in a maintenance shop; however, USP-1 Coleman has a significant number of inmate jobs in the factory operated by Federal Prison Industries, also known as UNICOR. There may be a waiting list for factory employment.