Improving the Employment Outlook and Socioeconomics of the Bay Area
1) Describe the key activities, processes and stakeholders that should be included when designing and implementing a workforce development system that aligns with economic development, supports the growth of County’s businesses and provides the necessary competitive skills and experiences for job seekers?
- Tax Payers and Residents of the County of San Mateo
- Employers and Payroll Tax Payers within the County of San Mateo
- County Vocational Rehabilitation Services (VRS) and the California Dilitation Services (VR good thing to implement.epartment of Rehabilitative Services (Menlo Park and San Mateo offices)
- Employees that work in both the public and private sectors
- Residents of the County who are unemployed, disabled, veterans, poor, or in transition
- Elected and Appointed Government Officials
- Regulatory Agencies, such as the California Environmental Protection Agency
- County Human Services Agency
- Customers that do business with the public and private sectors within the County
Already in the Workforce Development Program, VRS of San Carlos, “Peninsula Works” of Daly City, Job Plus (largely subcontracted to Caminar Jobs Plus or Opportunities Industrialization Center West (OICW)),and “Job Train” are operating under the organizational umbrella of the County of San Mateo.
Caminar’s performance should be well-documented. All contractors should be held accountable to high quantifiable standards.
OICW’s activities in Menlo Park date back to the beginnings of Silicon Valley. Within some industry sectors (i.e. culinary arts), they have experienced good success. With others, graduates of the vocational training programs have had a limited employment future. Curriculum developers and instructors should have a longer range vision. Job-related skill training is only a single element. Job placement, recruiting, on-the-job coaching, and continuing education are also very important.
OICW and Caminar need to staff appropriate to the needs of both the job-seeker and potential employer community populations. Appropriate in this case means that these agencies serving the residents, workforce, and employers within the county, have a suitable number of qualified staff on-hand.
The County Human Services Agency has had a budget of $184 million. The level of funding will change, likely downward. The Workforce Investment Board should be pursuing funding from private industry and federal grants!
One area in need of great improvement is EEOC/employment for disabled persons. Their unemployment rate exceeds 70%. Agency has had a budget of $184 million. The level of funding will change, likely downward. The Workfo
Particularly with the County-managed job development programs, frequent self-audits and upper management reviews are important toward the relevance and effectiveness of their manpower efforts and diversion of financial and technical resources. The stakeholders must be in a two-way communication loop. A Community Career Action Committee may be a good thing to implement.
- Review and Re-Evaluation
- Continuous Improvement
v Work with existing employers to find suitable employees to fit their requirements.
v Help qualified applicants find employment quickly.
v Meet monthly performance goals and unemployment rate statistic their requirements.
v Anticipate labor needs and job skills that will require training and instruction.
v Outreach activities to attract new businesses and industries to the county.
v Involve all chambers of commerce in San Mateo County.
v Assist small business owners maintain their profitability and create new jobs.
v Reduce time while developing curriculum necessary to re-train the unemployed for jobs available.
v Coordinate with all local high schools concerning the job market facing their graduates and provide both instruction and job placement assistance for high schoolers.
v Solicit federal grant funds and donations from the industrial and private community.
v Elicit assistance from volunteers, particularly residents who wish to serve as mentors and job coaches.
v Re-evaluate all programs and written policies and procedures as needed – at a minimum, annually.
v Implement improvements in every facet, as soon as possible.ty.
v stries to the county.
v ato its roUSTRY SECTORS.”ISTING ”
2) How can a Workforce Investment Board better understand and add value to its role of supporting businesses in priority industry sectors in the County?
IT (The two-way understandings) NEEDS TO GO BEYOND EXISTING “PRIORITY INDUSTRY SECTORS.”
Government employee numbers throughout the county are higher than any other single employer. To look only at private industries for solutions, is a mistake. Quasi-governmental employers such as utility, garbage and recycling, water, sewer, and Internet and television cable companies have a greater proportion of the workforce than small businesses or corporations. East of California, public works and service companies are managed by local or regional government agencies; this is not the case within the County of San Mateo.
Thus each government entity must look within itself to determine what can be done to make their own workforce more productive. Governments should make their policies, ordinances, procedures, and even permit licensing more “commerce-friendly.”
Most local chambers of commerce are suffering. Their numbers and active participation is dwindling. The positive influence each used to have in their local community and at the regional, state and federal levels had diminished.
Every service company should see what they can do to either create more jobs or facilitate other organizations’ increase and maintenance of employment statistics.
Understanding is a by-product of effective communication.
Adding value may come about inof effective communication.
s and Collegesthe national biotech industry.elp build the entire Bay A many forms.
ü Developing effective instructional programs.
ü Monitoring the workforce via job coaching and correspondence with hiring managers.
ü Offering relevant inforstructional programs. Monitoring the workforce via job coaching and correspondence with hirimation for employers, prospective businesses that would move into the County, and job seekers.
ü Creating incentive programs for hiring agents and workers, alike.
The investment board must work cooperatively with all stakeholders (identified in Question 1), practice sound management principles (at least seven items listed in answer to Question 1), and drive a Continuous Improvement, Work for Newly-Graduated Students from Local High Schools and Colleges and Re-Employment Programs throughout the County.
Management must not overlook the activities of similar groups around the San Francisco Bay Area and State of California. There may be opportunities to share resources, direct efforts with synergy, and help build the entire Bay Area economy beyond this northern end of Silicon Valley and one heart of the national biotech and defense industries.
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