Our Labor of Love
Every year, we celebrate Labor Day and pay tribute to the contributions and achievements of American workers. This year, we’d like to celebrate some of our own – our Workforce Advancement (WFA) and Business Solutions Teams.
Both teams are relentless in their pursuit of employment for thousands of Central Texans each year. Many individuals who had lost hope of ever obtaining a sustainable career have had their lives transformed by these mission operations teams. In fact, last year alone, Central Texans were placed into over 3,400 jobs by their efforts.
How does our team do it? Goodwill is a one-stop shop! Not only does Workforce Advancement provide the education and training to get people career-ready, Business Solutions is there to make sure the right job opportunities are in place.
“Our purpose is clear,” states DeWayne Street, Vice President of Workforce Advancement. “Not only are we dedicated to getting Central Texans into sustainable careers, we’re responsible for ensuring that these individuals are diverse, properly educated, and trained for that particular role, all while making sure we’ve got the right person in the right job.”
Goodwill offers a variety of job-readiness training that focuses on hard skills, in addition to soft skills which are integral to job retention. For example, Career Advancement Training (CAT) includes a five-day, immersive Boot Camp, utilizing hands-on activities that are designed to prepare job seekers to find and retain employment. Other CAT offerings include Financial Literacy Training, Resume & Mock Interview Training, Computer Training, and Communications & Presentation Training. Each program participant is assigned a Career Case Manager (CCM) who provides assistance and support along the entire journey. And our CCMs are second to none, guiding community members to transition from job to career.
“When I see that look on a program participant’s face, the one where they light up from the inside, I know I’ve done my job,” says Dena Hill, Career Case Manager.
So, what’s the next step? That’s where our Business Solutions Team comes in. There are hundreds of employers in Central Texas that have asked for – and committed to hiring– our program participants for in-demand careers. Personally cultivating employer relationships to secure job opportunities has been one of the things Robyn Householder, Vice President of Business Solutions, loves to do. “When I reach out to employers, many of them are surprised at the breadth and depth of specialized career training that Goodwill Central Texas offers,” says Robyn. “There’s a definite lack of trained, highly-skilled individuals in a number of well-paying industries, and my job is to let these companies know we have the perfect employee for their positions.”
It’s a win-win situation. Local employers fill much-needed positions, and program participants are on the road to a great career. And these individuals earn much more than a paycheck – many say it brings them dignity, respect, and the kind of long-term stability that creates generational change for their families.
“They understand they’ve just crossed that threshold of continuous dead-end jobs to a real career…one that will improve their life immensely. And there’s nothing like getting that phone call when they tell me they landed the position they wanted. That’s the best feeling in the world,” says Dena.
In fact, our Career Case Managers frequently gets wonderful emails like this one:
I never dreamed I’d be on the path to becoming a Certified Public Accountant. But thanks to Alesha and Goodwill, I’ve finally launched my accounting career! I’m so excited about my future!
– Shannon, Accounting Technician
So this Labor Day, look through the eyes of one of the people we serve. You’ll see someone who is ecstatic for the opportunity to be part of the Central Texas workforce and community!
If you’d like more information about Business Solutions, email Robyn.Householder@goodwillcentraltexas.org or visit https://www.goodwillcentraltexas.org/business-solutions
For more information about Career Advancement Training, email CAT@goodwillcentraltexas.org or visit https://www.goodwillcentraltexas.org/education-job-training
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