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Your Partner in Managing Your Workforce Challenges
July 2018

Hello. And welcome to At the Center.

Last month, in response to some high-profile business closures, the Chamber hosted two pop-up job fairs as a way to help those recently unemployed get back-to-work quickly. A special shout-out to Rhoads Energy and the Emerald Foundation for their partnerships with the events.

The response was overwhelming, with more than 100 businesses participating, most of which signed up within 24 hours of our invitation.

And, while we thank you for your involvement, the response offers one more example of what we hear all the time from businesses; attracting and retaining a workforce is currently the single biggest issue economic issues facing our County today.

And, rest assured, every day your Chamber is working to address that issue in a variety of ways.

The first way we are addressing this is ensure employers have the tools and resources to compete for workers in the marketplace. The Chamber's annual Wage Survey and Policies & Benefits Surveys are local resources to do just that. With recent data suggesting up to 50% of the American workforce is considering a job switch, it is imperative that companies offer a compensation and benefits package to entice and retain workers. Our survey gives you the tools to assess the local competitive landscape like no other. Please visit our website for more information on participating in the survey. And do it today as our deadline for participating is July 23. Oh . . . and one more added bonus. If you participate you get the results for the sections you participate in for free!

Another way the Chamber is here to help is by focusing on helping you to retain the employees you hire. As employers experience a decrease in employee engagement and an increase in turnover, a key strategy for retention is committing to employee professional development and training. This fall, the Chamber is offering six academies focused on management, strategic leadership, sales, presentations, marketing and personal development. I encourage you to take a look at these programs and reward your emerging stars with an investment in their - and your - future.

Please know that these two options are just scratching the surface of the work the Chamber has been doing to assist with workforce recruitment and retention. Projects such as working with the STEM Alliance to assist with rational career exploration for our youth; parterning with others to present Manufacturing Month this October; providing a platform for mentorships, and much, much more. I encourage you to check out our website to learn more about any of these programs.

But, rest assured, we're not done yet as we are always looking to build value and relevance to meet your workforce needs. To that end, I would ask you to keep an eye out for a Survey we will be sending before month's end soliciting your thoughts on the workforce programs and services of the Chamber. This is a great opportunity to make sure your voice is heard in developing our ongoing program of work.

Make no mistake about it, we want to be your partner in ensuring your growth and providing opportunities for you to manage the workforce challenges of today are just one example of that. Please be sure to take advantage of these offerings.

Until next time, stay informed, stay engaged and stay with us . . . At the Center.

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