Blog posts tagged with Workforce-Development

MAGNET helps returning veterans find manufacturing jobs

May 03, 2012 by MAGNET Ohio

By Mary Ann Pacelli, Senior Consultant, MAGNET Even with high unemployment rates, so many jobs in manufacturing still remain unfilled- an estimated 200,000 over the next couple years.  These unfilled jobs are typically requiring technical skills and competencies not in abundance in the general unemployed population- but skills believed to be within local Veterans.  As part of latest efforts to promote employment for former service members, the Manufacturing Advocacy and Growth Network (MAGNET) launched a program to match returning Veterans with unfilled manufacturing jobs in Ohio, and provide additional training where needed. MAGNET has partnered with the Veterans’ Services group of the Ohio Department of Job & Family Services (ODJFS) on the Veterans Program which is funded by an award from the U.S. Department of Labor Employment and Training Administration. Mone’ Givner, Region 2 Veterans Program Manager of the Office of Workforce Development of the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services states, "Our mission is to provide policies and procedures regarding the Veterans programs and services necessary for Ohio to implement the Jobs for Veterans Act. Our goal is to alleviate unemployment and underemployment for veterans and other eligible persons." This partnership of community colleges, universities, businesses, and Veterans

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Reshoring gets welcome attention; Good business climate necessary to take advantage of potential

May 01, 2012 by MAGNET Ohio

"Onshoring" / "Insourcing" / "Reshoring" These are the names of an emerging trend to bring manufacturing production back to the U.S. that has been taken overseas (often to China) over the past several decades–primarily to take advantage of lower cost labor. For a variety of reasons, bringing these jobs back has become a viable option in some cases. These include situations where the overseas wage advantage has eroded, transportation costs have risen, and currency valuations shifted to favor U.S. production.  In addition, demands for just-in-time delivery, managing quality in supply chains, and reactions to environmental and political disruption in some overseas markets, have prompted companies to look at reshoring as an option. Big consulting firms like Boston Consulting Group, Alix Partners, McKinsey, and Accenture have all studied the reshoring potentials.  In some instances they advocated to their manufacturing clients that they seriously look at reshoring as a business option. Reshoring also is very popular politically.  President Obama has established an Insourcing Initiative, partly to leverage the experience of some of the big companies like General Electric and Caterpillar that have been in the forefront of reshoring.  G.E. recently as announced that it will bring enough jobs back from China that

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MAGNET helps students learn about manufacturing and engineering jobs

March 21, 2012 by MAGNET Ohio

By Judith Crocker, Director of Education & Training Judith Crocker, Director of Education & Training, MAGNET   Recently, a select group of students from Beaumont High School in Cleveland, Ohio had the opportunity to visit a couple local manufacturing companies to learn more about the field of advanced manufacturing and the role that science, engineering, and math play in manufacturing in Northeast Ohio. "My female students got to hear from professional women about their experiences in engineering," says Beaumont Schools teacher Lauren Brandon. "They gained invaluable insights into the challenges and rewards of an engineering career." Manufacturing and engineering careers are growing and in demand now more than ever.  It is important for educators and students to learn what today’s manufacturing is really all about and the opportunities in fields such as engineering that are available in this growing industry. Many regional manufacturers are willing to open their doors to students to provide tours to students. If students don’t have the opportunity to visit manufacturers, there are additional ways for them to learn. MAGNET, through the career awareness program, offered in partnership with WVIZ  and the Northern Ohio Technology Association, reaches as many as 300 students each program. Programs are

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As economy heats up, motor vehicle supply chain faces new challenges and opportunities

March 19, 2012 by MAGNET Ohio

The Wall Steet Journal recently reported that the surge in consumer borrowing is primarily due to auto and student loans—two factors that bode well for the auto industry (Consumers Ramped Up Borrowing in January, by Neil Shah, Wall Street Journal, March 7, 2012). The average car on U.S. roads is now a record 10.8 years old. More people buying cars gives more solid evidence to a rebounding auto industry. More people returning to school, could lead to more skilled workers for advanced manufacturing positions that are going unfilled. Ohio is experiencing both of these phenomena even as the unemployment rate continues to go down. The PNC National Economic Outlook for March reported "there was a big jump of 6.8 percent in output of motor vehicles and parts in January, consistent with stronger sales; this was on top of a 3.8 percent gain in December (revised up from 0.6 percent). Auto manufacturers have boosted production as demand has picked up. This is also spurring hiring in manufacturing, and broader economic recovery, especially in the Midwest." For the past several months, in Ohio, we’ve been seeing headlines that confirm what appears to be a recovery in the auto industry. Headlines like: Ford

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Jobs for Veterans Program Makes Progress

March 15, 2012 by MAGNET Ohio

Last July, MAGNET launched a unique pilot project to help connect returning U.S. veterans with manufacturing jobs in Northeast Ohio. "There are many jobs at manufacturing companies in Northeast Ohio that are still unfilled even with today’s high unemployment rate," noted MAGNET President and CEO Dan Berry at the time. "These unfilled jobs typically require technical skills and competencies not widely found in the general unemployed population. Our belief is that many returning veterans have some of the core technical skills that can meet the needs of manufacturers in the region." MAGNET’s goal was to identify, train and match returning veterans with existing jobs at area manufacturing companies that are unfilled due to a lack of appropriately skilled applicants. To accomplish this, MAGNET partnered with the Veterans’ Services group of the Ohio Department of Job & Family Services (ODJFS). Thanks to a grant from the U.S. Department of Labor Employment and Training Administration MAGNET and ODJFS began the pilot project with two well-attended informational sessions for manufacturers on July 19 and July 28, 2011. Becky Kemp, MAGNET Senior Workforce Development Consultant, reports that eight months later, 57 veterans have undergone the skills testing process to determine their job skills and

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Addressing Manufacturing Workforce Challenges: Our Future In Peril

March 12, 2012 by MAGNET Ohio

By Dan Berry, President and CEO, MAGNET Few conversations we here at MAGNET have with manufacturers about their operating challenges get very far without workforce considerations emerging as a central problem.  Unfortunately, we have learned that there are multiple dimensions to these challenges and that no single solution will fix them. At one level, primarily among those companies looking for moderately skilled entry level workers, we often hear these sentiments.  "We’ll train them.  Just give us individuals who have basic reading, writing and math skills, who understand what it means to work, that show up every day on time, can follow directions, work as a member of a team and can pass a drug test. " Here is another refrain we often hear:  "The average age in my skilled workforce is 55 plus.  I am going to lose all my (insert machinists, welders, etc.) over the next several years and there is no source of replacements in sight." Other companies talk about the difficulty they’re having with finding highly skilled talent, often in various engineering disciplines. So, the range of workforce challenges runs the gamut of education in the U.S. from what’s necessary in K-12 education to build the foundation

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Looking for workers? Learn more about the Vocational Guidance Services (VGS) paid work experience program.

November 10, 2011 by MAGNET Ohio

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.

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Manufacturing can be the cornerstone to economic recovery

September 13, 2011 by MAGNET Ohio

The Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) program is the foremost public-private partnership in the U.S. MEP is tightly focused on sustaining and growing vibrant economies through innovative manufacturing. So those of us in leadership roles within the MEP are pleased to hear words coming from Washington that re-affirm our belief that innovation in manufacturing can be a cornerstone to the economic recovery strategy. In the 21st century, manufacturing will rely on engineers, technicians and creative leadership—brains not brawn—to elevate the status of U.S. know-how and ingenuity. We at MAGNET, which is the MEP organization for Northern Ohio, are encouraged by President Obama’s remarks during his address to the joint session of Congress on Sept. 8, 2011. The President emphasized the importance of manufacturing and, in particular, the importance of establishing on-the-job training and tuition incentives for students to study engineering. In the President’s words: "Already, we’ve mobilized business leaders to train 10,000 American engineers a year, by providing company internships and training. Other businesses are covering tuition for workers who learn new skills at community colleges. And we’re going to make sure the next generation of manufacturing takes root not in China or Europe, but right here, in the United States

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Addressing the Skills Gap in NE Ohio

August 30, 2011 by MAGNET Ohio

For the past ten years or more, we have been "warned" about the coming skills gap crisis in our country. Researchers and economists have provided data that indicate that we will have hundreds of jobs going unfilled while hundreds of people are looking for work. The recent recession caused many to discount this warning due to the large number of people who lost their jobs, particularly in manufacturing. However, the reality of the skills gap is now starting to emerge and is looming on the horizon as we continue to observe the number of "baby boomers" leaving the workforce. The manufacturing industry and its often higher paying jobs is leading the way in the economic come back, it is also on the leading edge of the skilled worker retirements. Many of the job seekers do not have the skills needed to participate in modern advanced manufacturing. Some lack a work ethic and understanding of the work environment, others lack the basic academic skills, as well as the technical, math, and science needed to design and manufacture all kinds of products and parts. Our returning veterans represent one source to fill the skills gap. An analysis of the knowledge and skills

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Senator Brown Pushes Bill to Help Vets Find Jobs

July 20, 2011 by MAGNET Ohio

The Youngstown Business Journal reports on Sen. Sherrod Brown’s (D-Ohio) support of the Hiring Heroes Act of 2011 (full article here). Brown serves on the  Senate Committee on Veterans Affairs, which recently sent the bill for approval by the full Senate. At a media event Monday at Youngstown State University, Brown called for the bill’s passage. Youngstown Business Journal reporter George Nelson contacted MAGNET’s Mary Ann Pacelli, a senior business consultant specializing in workforce development, about MAGNET’s launch of a Northeast Ohio pilot project that will match returning veterans’ skills with hard-to-fill manufacturing jobs. "Mary Ann Pacelli, senior business consultant with the Manufacturing Advocacy & Growth Network, or Magnet, noted that the organization has a pilot program now that could show how the legislation could work. "‘We know there are many returning veterans coming back home with very specific skills that don’t look like they would fit in manufacturing. We also know that even in today’s economy there are jobs in manufacturing companies going unfulfilled,’ she said. Under the program. Magnet is working with the employers and the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services to match veterans with jobs they might be interested in and qualify for, as well

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