Investing for Lane County Businesses
As a dedicated capacity builder and investor, the Board of Lane Workforce Partnership is committed to enhancing the region’s workforce readiness to effectively address the demands of local employers. We utilize federal and state funds to channel resources into initiatives that empower individuals and align their skills with the evolving job market.
Current investments include:
For the period July 1, 2022, through June 30, 2023, the Lane Workforce Partnership Board of Directors invested $1.5 million in federal, state, and foundation funds into WorkSource Lane. This financial support allows for the provision of essential resources such as staffing, training scholarships, support services, On-the-Job training funds, internet access, computers, and testing programs. These comprehensive offerings are designed to equip jobseekers with the necessary skills to effectively meet the demands of local employers. To effectively address the needs of local employers, WorkSource Lane operates through a collaborative service delivery approach between Lane Workforce Partnership and the Oregon Employment Department.
In May 2023, Lane Workforce Partnership established a contract with Collaborative Economic Development Oregon (Collaborative EDO) to serve as its dedicated business service arm. Collaborative EDO, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, is dedicated to fostering high wage job growth in Lane County through various initiatives, including industry engagement, entrepreneurial support, workforce development, business expansion, regional marketing, and the formation of public/private partnerships.
Under this expanded partnership, Collaborative EDO actively engages with key industries vital to the local economy, implementing proven programs and initiatives to accelerate the growth of high wage jobs. The organization collaborates closely with community stakeholders, both in existing and new targeted industry sector initiatives.
Key strategic goals for this partnership:
- Identify and support sector strategists and leads;
- Activate cross-sector collaboration opportunities;
- Host an Annual State of the Industry Summit;
- Establish measurements of success;
- Dive into new practices and strategies that have not been launched or developed;
- Be a catalyst for systemic change and elevating the importance of embedding DEI practices in our workforce system.
This investment in Sector Strategies strengthens Lane County’s workforce and economic development efforts significantly, with a focus on talent development, high wage job creation, business competitiveness, and industry-specific training to meet the demands of the region’s growth industries.
On-the-Job Training Program
Between July 1, 2021, and June 30, 2022, Lane Workforce Partnership invested $177,086.10 in the On-the-Job Training (OJT) program. This highly effective program is administered through WorkSource Oregon Lane and offers an excellent opportunity for Lane County businesses. By providing up to $5,000 in financial support, the OJT program enables businesses to hire job seekers or current employees who possess potential but lack specific skills. The program’s unique “hire first” approach creates a mutually beneficial arrangement, allowing employers to train these individuals on the job. During the training period, reimbursements are calculated at 50% of the wages earned by the new hire.
Aiming to expand the program’s reach, Collaborative EDO has emerged as a dedicated champion for the On-the-Job Training (OJT) program in Lane County Businesses. Collaborating closely with the staff at WorkSource Oregon Lane, Collaborative EDO actively facilitates connections between businesses and valuable resources that significantly benefit both employers and job seekers. Through intentional and inclusive outreach efforts, Collaborative EDO has successfully broadened the awareness of OJT among a diverse range of businesses, fostering increased participation and opportunities.OJT brochure
Regional Innovation Training Funds
Lane Workforce Partnership and Lane County Community & Economic Development partner to invest in the Regional Innovation Training Fund (RITF). This fund serves as a catalyst for collective training initiatives within specific industry sectors, with a strong emphasis on obtaining valuable post-secondary credentials. By supporting these projects, we aim to foster the growth and long-term retention of innovative talent within Lane County.
Watch for new innovation training fund opportunities.
Work-Ready Lane County
As an economic development strategy, Lane County achieved its goal of becoming a Certified Work Ready Community. View up-to-date progress towards the goal for all counties within the State of Oregon.
Oregon’s CWRC program works in concert with the National Career Readiness Certificate (NCRC), and serves as a validating tool that a community has a skilled labor force for targeted industries. The Governor has identified the National Career Readiness Certificate as one of the administration’s key workforce development strategies.
“The program allows you to assess people ahead of time before they come in the door. The National Career Readiness Certificate includes a rigorous testing system… I’m noticing a significant quality difference in the applicant pool since we started using the NCRC.” Wayne Skipper, President, Concentric Sky. Concentric Sky is featured in a video to bring awareness to the value of the National Career Readiness Certificate.
View listing of employers in Lane County that recognize the NCRC in their hiring.