Fairfield Ledger

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Neighbors Growing Together | Nov 21, 2017

Supervisors asked to support career readiness program

By DIANE VANCE, Ledger staff writer | Oct 23, 2012

Iowa Workforce Development is asking regional businesses and industries to sign an agreement to use the National Career Readiness Certificate as a way to document a person’s essential work-related skills.

Susie Drish from Region 15, Ottumwa IowaWorks Center, talked with Jefferson County Board of Supervisors at Monday’s supervisors meeting.

“Our governor wants as many business tie-ins as possible to promote having a skilled labor pool,” said Drish.

Job seekers and those already employed can train through Workforce Development and take a test to earn certification in various areas.

“Employers want to know they are hiring qualified people,” said Steve Burgmeier, chairman of the board of supervisors. “Certification makes it easier to identify qualified applicants, and it’s good for the job seeker.”

Drish asked the supervisors to sign an agreement to show intent to support use of National Career Readiness Certification. Since Drish was not on Monday’s agenda, but talked during public comments, the supervisors could not sign the agreement Monday. It will be on next Monday’s agenda.

“This is a great tool,” said Tracy Vance, executive director of Fairfield Economic Development Association, also in the audience Monday. “It allows employers to know if an applicant has the skills needed for the job. If the economic development groups can get that information — about how many certified people are in a population — it’s a great tool to promote our area. We can say, we have this pool of skilled workers.”

Drish said those already employed also can receive on-the-job training if eligible for Workforce Development services and workforce development can pay 50 percent of wages for up to 18 weeks of on-the-job training.

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