Oakland County Michigan Works! helps companies get share of expected $15 mil in job training funds

Oakland County Michigan Works! is holding two free informational sessions to assist employers interested in getting a portion of an expected $15 million the state has available through its Skilled Trades Training Fund.

The sessions run from 9 a.m. to noon on Sept. 1 and Sept. 7 and are being held at the Oakland County Executive Office Building Conference Center, 2100 Pontiac Lake Road in Waterford. Representatives from Oakland County Michigan Works! offices will meet with interested employers to answer questions and help them apply for the funds. Companies interested in receiving funding must apply through a Michigan Works! office in the state to be considered.

Online registration is available at www.advantageoakland.eventbright.com.

“This program creates a significant return on investment for the state and the businesses while helping our workforce acquire the skills needed to succeed,” Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson said. “I encourage companies to take advantage of this important opportunity.”

The application deadline is Oct. 14. Awards will be announced in early November, said Jennifer Llewellyn, manager of Workforce Development for the Department of Economic Development & Community Affairs. Funding approval comes from the state’s Workforce Development Agency.

Workers are trained in occupations such as software programming, computer-aided design, welding and robot operations.

In 2015, 44 Oakland County companies shared $1.3 million in training funds, allowing them to hire 242 employees and provide training for an additional 1,300. Companies who receive funding agree to contribute matching job training funds to help prepare their workforces.

Coupled with funds received beginning in 2013 from the state, Oakland County employers – through Oakland County Michigan Works! – have received more than $2 million to retrain their existing workforce and hire new employees.

Oakland County Michigan Works! provides talent attraction, management and retention services for businesses, and career management, training and placement for job seekers at eight locations in Oakland County. They are located in Ferndale, Highland, Novi, Oak Park, Pontiac, Southfield, Troy and Waterford.