NCWorks uses a team approach to recruiting, screening, and training.
When the GE Aviation facility in West Jefferson, North Carolina announced an expansion of more than $150 million it wasn’t the thousands of tons of concrete needed to build the building or the multi-million dollar equipment or even the deadlines to their network of global partners that kept them up at night.
They were concerned about finding and training the right workers for the 105 new jobs.
NCWorks brought together a team from the NCWorks Career Center, Wilkes Community College, the High Country Workforce Development Board, the Ashe County Chamber of Commerce, and Ashe County Economic Development to help.
“Every member of the team offered services to help recruit talent, develop trainings, and outreach to the community,” said Adrian Tait, Director of the High Country Workforce Development Board. “By combining the strengths of this team we were able to deliver a complete package of services to connect GE Aviation with the talent they needed.”
“NCWorks has done a lot of great things for us. They came on site with us, sat in strategy meetings, and helped us decide how we were going to go after the workforce and how to be most effective,” describes Kory Wilcox, GE Aviation Human Resource Lead.
To meet GE Aviation’s need, a multi-step application screening process was used beginning with a dedicated microsite on NCWorks.gov, an online application and skills assessment, pre-employment training, and in-depth new hire training.
Then the High Country Workforce Development Board implemented a multi-faceted marketing strategy that included a direct mailing to workers dislocated from other area manufacturers, newspaper and web advertising, local television and radio spots, and social media outreach. In addition, area NCWorks Career Centers provided personal outreach to job seekers, one-on-one assistance with applications and resumes, and hosted online skill assessments.
” The Career Center is very important to GE,” said Wilcox. “They cut down on our administrative burden by streamlining the screening and application process.”
The Human Resource Development program at Wilkes Community College held preparation workshops for candidates with tips on interviewing and insight into today’s manufacturing careers. The NCWorks Customized Training program developed a comprehensive pre and post hire training series and leveraging funding from Golden Leaf a training center was set up providing the right environment to prepare new employees.
“We knew that manufacturers like GE Aviation needed a facility for hands-on CNC training,” said Ginger Shaffer, Director of Workforce Development at Wilkes Community College. “This is a great example of how we can respond to the needs of employers.”
Within a few months after the initial convening of GE Aviation and NCWorks, Wilkes Community College hosted a successful hiring event where almost 300 candidates were able to complete applications, speak with GE employees, and learn more about NCWorks.
GE Aviation has been pleased with the results. “I highly recommend the NCWorks system to other employers,” stated Wilcox.