Businesses Working Together to Close Job Skills Gaps

Career College Central summary:

  • Even as the manufacturing industry sheds jobs overall, a number of firms in Maryland want to hire — and aren't having an easy time of it.
  • That's what the Maryland Manufacturing Extension Partnership heard when the nonprofit talked to 40 employers this year. Most of the entry-level people the firms bring on don't work out, in part because it can be a culture shock to take a job in manufacturing for the first time, said Brian Sweeney, executive director of the manufacturing-assistance organization.
  • A new state program aims to fill such gaps with training designed and launched by employers. Twenty-nine groups in a variety of business sectors will get funding to analyze their needs and plan training next year, including the "boot camp" prep course envisioned by manufacturers, the state plans to announce Monday.
  • The Employment Advancement Right Now program, called EARN, is part of a national movement to get employers more deeply involved in efforts to develop a skilled workforce — a shift that has gathered steam in recent years as federal funding for training has shrunk.

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