Public Workforce System and Public Libraries: Stronger Together
By Grace A. Kilbane, Administrator, Office of Workforce Investment, ETA
In my career with the workforce development system, I have time and again seen that our mission relies critically on making connections. At the most fundamental level, we connect individuals with career assistance and employment opportunities. We are also connecting workers, job seekers and employers with other community resources to ensure that we are meeting the complex and varied needs of our customers.
In this light, I am especially pleased at the opportunity to use this Community of Practice to share an exciting partnership ETA is developing with the
In the coming weeks, I sincerely hope that you visit this Reemployment Works! Community of Practice often and learn more about how the different workforce-library partnerships established around the country can help inform regional, state and local reemployment strategies. And, of course, we very much hope that you will take the time to share your experience collaborating with public libraries. Whether you are a
I look forward to learning about your experiences with libraries and hope that as a result of our Federal partnership, you may discover new ways libraries can be valuable partners.
With warm regards,
About 250 people joined us recently for an interactive ‘strategic doing’ event hosted by Brevard Workforce and the Economic Development Commission of Florida’s Space Coast, (and generously sponsored by FLORIDA TODAY, our local Gannett newspaper) called Overcoming the Space Challenge through Regional Innovation. The group came together to learn more about the challenges we face at the end of NASA’s Shuttle Program, and to actually incorporate our ideas and resources into a strategic plan that would help Brevard and the surrounding region in overcoming these challenges. It was the first such event Brevard has ever experienced.
Facilitated by Ed Morrison, strategic advisor to the Purdue Center for Economic Development and Linda Fowler, founder of Regionerate, local, regional and state experts on the leading edge of responsibility in the areas of schools, our economy, the aerospace industry, county services, and help for the workforce started off the event with some insight before attendees broke into groups.
Brevard Workforce briefed the audience on our intensive Aerospace Workforce Transition program and the Regional Aerospace Workforce Initiative, efforts that started more than three years ago to serve and assist the talent that will be displaced.
After the briefing, the re-engagement network groups got down to work. They discussed the first steps in pulling together people and resources that might work together to strategize and carry out activities that could help in several areas entitled: Aerospace 2.0, NASA 2.0, Entrepreneurship, Talent Marketing, Talent Advancement, Growing Clusters, Aerospace Suppliers, Talent Support, New Narratives and Government 2.0. More than a dozen action plans were created by the various network participants, who are still working together to refine them via a dedicated Internet social media web site set up for the community. Brevard Workforce plans to reconvene the attendees with their respective networks sometime in July 2010.
We recently posted several resources on the Worforce3One website related to a dynamic and effective action model, Strategic Doing, that builds on three principles that have helped our workforce system respond quickly and with vigor to the challenges the recession has brought us: Alignment, Linking, and Leveraging. While the system has long used these principles almost intuitively in service delivery, we haven’t always applied them strategically to solve, or even to anticipate and avoid, problems. Now we can.
Strategic Doing is also a platform for moving quickly and collaboratively from innovative ideas to innovative actions in a simple, structured and – most important in our fast-moving world where even a few focused hours are a luxury – fast process that helps to solidify partnerships, define relationships, and create a “swarm” (to borrow a Strategic Doing term) of new ideas and solutions quickly. And with many states needing to decide- like now – how best to invest their expiring ARRA Reemployment Services (RES) and Wagner-Peyser dollars, there may be no better time to become familiar with this action-oriented decision making tool.
As you will see from the materials, a growing number of local, regional and state organizations are using this approach to “jump-start” creative solutions. As you will hear from some of them in future blogs, they are attracted in part by the focus on action, not just planning. Participants leave their sessions with specific partners identified (by name and phone number, not just organization) and action steps ready to be taken forward. This ability to align, link and leverage in real time makes the Strategic Doing experience especially satisfying to those who have participated. And it is certainly even more attractive as the clock ticks down for obligation of the Recovery Act RES and Wagner-Peyser funds. It’s all about making good decisions and acting now, while funds are available.
So download, read and share! You can find the information on how to “do” Strategic Doing here (link). And look to the CoP for more bloggers to share how their states are investing their ARRA RES funds.
The $250 million in Reemployment Services Grants provided through the Recovery Act have generated a host of creative and innovative approaches to helping the unemployed. In particular, we have learned a great deal over the last year about how assessment tools can strengthen reemployment services. Personality assessments, work values assessments, skills transferability assessments/tools, interest assessments, educational assessments, occupational skills assessments, work readiness assessments and the list goes on.... all of these types of assessments and more increase the workforce system’s ability to match job seekers and employers.
If you are still looking for ways to invest your ARRA RES funds, we want to help you learn about which instruments are the most effective by connecting you with your workforce system colleagues who can give you unbiased, first-hand feedback on their experience with specific products. If you are interested in purchasing a particular assessment instrument or tool and would like to see if there is a workforce system colleague that is using the instrument you are interested in, please contact our resident expert on assessment tools:
USDOL – ETA – Office of Workforce Investment
In addition, this blog is a great place to start asking questions related to the effective use of assessments. Ask your colleagues what tools they are using and whether they find them user-friendly from both the administrator’s role as well as feedback received from customers. Ask your colleagues about the analysis of the assessment results. For example, was there a significant amount of training involved upfront to learn how to administer the tool and analyze the results?
Peer review and feedback can help make informed investments in your assessment suite! Use this community of practice and blog to get started now.
Did you miss the opportunity to connect with Heartland 2010 presenters and participants? No worries - we have posted video of many of theConference sessions. The U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration (USDOL/ETA) Region 5, in conjunction with the Great Lakes Employment and Training Association (GLETA), invites you to get connected with session presenters, other attendee's, and ETA staff by watching the videos of some of the sessions that were presented at this years Heartland Conference. To view the videos, just click the links:
List of Reemployment related Workshops
Modeling a New Education
Addressing barriers to successful sustained employment.: Gateway Technical College & Kenosha County Job Center will discuss collaborations designed to train today's dislocated worker.
Targeted self-employment preparation: The Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship will show how self-employment can work in today's troubled economy.
How can an ex-offender survive today's economy? The Iowa Workforce Development and the Iowa Department of Corrections will discuss proven methods to prepare offenders for the transition from incarceration to employment.
from the Public Workforce System: Tough economic times? Why not create your own job?: Project GATE II, IMPAQ International and the LLC, Consortium for Entrepreneurship Education showcase best practices and lessons learned from various entrepreneurial efforts.
Innovations in the expansion of opportunities for the mature jobseeker: Mature Services, Inc.,SCSEP and Easter Seals will discuss several new pathways for improving opportunities for the mature worker during these tough economic times.
Reconnecting UI claimants to the One-Stop System: The Wisconsin Job Service, Minnesota DEED, USDOL ETA and Washington DC will discuss new initiatives and strategic efforts to bridge this gap.
Additional 2010 Heartland Conference videos
Update on the Auto Recovery
Update on the Recovery of Auto Communities and Workers
Presenter: Dr. Paul Harrington, Director, Center for Labor Market Studies, Northwestern University
Additional 2010 Heartland Conference videos
Presenters: Laura Tomaka, Graham Toft
Presenters: Bruce Bernardi, Ken Messina, and Jeff Ryan
Connecting to Education
Kenneth L. Ender, Ph.D., Harper College
Skillshed Analysis: A Tool for Future Strategies
Presenters: Paula Nissen, Joe Hogue
Presenters: Rebekah Woolley, Jamie Gallie, Deborah Galoway, and Janet Rosentreter
Expectations for a 21st Century Worforce System
Presenters: Robert Knight, Bonnie Elsey
WE NEED YOUR INPUT!
Will you be attending the 2010 Heartland Conference?
Do you have a question for a presenter?
Are there topics you would like to be addressed?
We welcome all questions!
STAY TUNED, TAKE PART IN THE DISCUSSION!