Workforce Florida Inc.
Florida's workforce policy and oversight board, Workforce Florida Inc., is chaired by Katherine Wilson, assistant vice president of CSX Corp. Appointed by the governor, the Workforce Florida board, in partnership with the Agency for Workforce Innovation, designs and implements strategic programs and initiatives to meet the workforce needs of Florida's businesses. Local services and resources are provided by Florida's 24 regional workforce boards and their close to 100 one-stop centers.
Workforce Florida also develops strategies to address the needs of job seekers across the employment spectrum, from entry into the workforce, to cultivating workers to fill coveted high skill/high demand jobs. Workforce Florida administers two nationally acclaimed employer-specific customized training programs - one for new workers and one for existing workers.
Quick Response Training Program (QRT)
This program provides grant funding for customized training for new or expanding businesses that produce an exportable product or service. The companies must be creating full-time, high-quality jobs requiring specialized training that is not available in the local community. Priority is given to businesses in targeted industries and in distressed urban and rural areas of Florida. Through this customer-driven program, Florida is able to effectively retain and attract businesses creating new high-quality jobs. Information and application for the QRT program can be accessed at: www.WorkforceFlorida.com.
Incumbent Worker Training Program (IWT)
Employers already doing business in Florida may qualify to receive assistance with some of the expenses associated with retraining their existing workforce through the state's nationally recognized Incumbent Worker Training Program. This expense reimbursement grant program administered directly by Workforce Florida has assisted hundreds of Florida businesses faced with the challenge of upgrading the skills of their workers to address changing technology, new product lines, new markets, etc. Businesses with 25 or fewer employees receive priority and, as with the Quick Response Training Program, priority is given to businesses in targeted industries and in distressed urban and rural parts of Florida. Information and an application for the IWT program can be accessed at:
Agency for Workforce Innovation
The Agency for Workforce Innovation is the lead state agency for implementing Florida policy on workforce development, welfare transition, unemployment compensation and workforce information. The agency houses the Office of Labor Market Statistics and serves as the designated U.S. Census data center for Florida. The agency also includes the Office of Early Learning, which administers the state's Voluntary Prekindergarten (VPK) program and the state's school readiness programs.
Employ Florida helps employers quickly find workforce resources throughout the state without having to know the names of 24 different workforce regions and the nearly 100 local one-stop centers. Local affiliates can provide personalized assistance to business owners who are looking for new employees as well as information on training resources in the area and hiring incentives. As an alternative to visiting a local one-stop center, businesses can locate and access resources virtually anywhere using the Employ Florida Marketplace.
Employ Florida Marketplace
This powerful online labor market exchange tool was specifically designed for employers, job seekers, students, training providers, workforce customer service representatives and professionals.
The Employ Florida Marketplace provides fast access to a complete set of employment tools in one website. This system is designed to be comfortable for everyone, even the person who has little computer experience.
With more than 2.5 million registered individuals and 130,000 resumes online as of April 2007, the Employ Florida Marketplace attracts 30,000+ unique visitors each day. Over 145,000 employers are registered at the Marketplace and have posted 12,000+ jobs. All of these numbers are growing daily.
Employ Florida Banner Centers
The Employ Florida Banner Centers are a $6.2 million Workforce Florida strategic initiative to establish 10 leading programs that focus on creating and providing cutting-edge training for workers in industries that are critical to sustaining and growing Florida's diverse economy, including aviation and aerospace, biotechnology, construction, energy, financial services, homeland security and defense, logistics and distribution, and manufacturing.
Most Employ Florida Banner Centers are based at Florida community colleges or universities. They engage educational institutions, businesses, and workforce and economic development partners, among others, to provide a focal point for industry-specific skills training. They serve as clearinghouses for companies needing training, create relevant and rigorous new curricula for training entry-level workers as well as those who need to upgrade their skills, and ensure training and education offered in Florida meets industry standards. The new curricula is portable, allowing it to be taught anywhere in the state.
More information can be found about all of Florida's local and state workforce resources and services at www.EmployFlorida.com.