Vocational Guidance Services (VGS) secures service and product contracts and can provide workers to manufacturers who help meet operational and production needs while advancing VGS’s philanthropic mission. In the case of labor intensive work, temporary labor and services contracts, these workers are VGS employees and VGS therefore pays all of the wages and fringes. If the employer likes what they see from these workers and decides they would like to hire them as employees, the company then become the employer and pays the wages. In order for this "Social Enterprise" approach to succeed, VGS knows that commercial price, quality and delivery expectations must be achieved by the participating companies. To help companies meet these expectations while employing people challenged by disabilities, VGS provides a unique blend of social service supports and business management finesse. This enables VGS to provide paid work experience to over 1,000 people daily! This program helps people dealing with physical disabilities, mental disabilities, economic challenges and/or a history of incarceration find jobs. To discuss how to get involved as a community-based employment site, contact Jim Hudak, vice president of VGS, at (216) 881-6028, or VGS’s sales manager Brad Sommerfelt at (216) 881-6015.
My new colleague, Kristin Hyla, reflects on her personal experience with career choices and the challenges manufacturers face attracting young talent in today’s economy: Did you ever envision yourself working in a manufacturing job? Personally, when I was in high school in 2003, the manufacturing industry was completely foreign to me. If you would have asked me, I would have envisioned a manufacturing job as tiresome, low-paying and dirty. Who even knew there were options other than a four-year college degree that could lead to a good job? According to "Addressing Today’s Skills Gap in Manufacturing", a recent study conducted by Deloitte and the Manufacturing Institute, 60% of people polled showed great interest in a manufacturing job for themselves. Even better, there are over 600,000 manufacturing jobs currently waiting to be filled! So why are over half of all manufacturers struggling to fill positions? There is a gap between the skills needed to do the job and those of the job seeker. This skills gap is expected to take the biggest toll on skilled production jobs and is expected to broaden over time. According to Deloitte, the U.S. needs to position manufacturing with talent to aggressively compete globally; growth and