Update from Kelly Fuller, VP of Talent & Workforce Development
Working Class

As many of you know, before coming to the Chamber in 2018, I worked for 15 years in public education. In my case, those years were spent with Eastland Fairfield Career and Technical Schools in a role that allowed me to connect businesses to high school students.
 The aspect of the job I loved most was connecting students to workplaces that were open and willing to onboard them with intention and invest in their development. That certainly was a win for both the student and the employer, as the company could then tap into an emerging workforce; rich with ideas for innovation, enthusiasm for learning, and the continued support of a teacher and an entire school system devoted to their work based success. That commitment from the school often resulted in solutions to barriers like transportation, workplace attire, necessary equipment/tools, etc.
As we all continue to fight the battle for talent, one thing is abundantly clear. We need to train more people to fill the current 11 million job openings in the U.S. Many of those positions are seeking skills that may not demand a Bachelor’s degree. And right now, Gen Z is considering all of their options for career and lifestyle. What is happening is a sea change from the days of “the only path to success is a 4-year college degree".
Support the Columbus Chamber Foundation
The Columbus Chamber of Commerce Foundation is a 501(c)(3) public charity. All donations will benefit the education and workforce development efforts of the Columbus Chamber Foundation. The Foundation strives to create greater opportunity for the Columbus Region’s workforce through job readiness and preparation for the critical roles that will help small businesses and our entire region thrive.
Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Access Update
Sherrice Thomas, VP of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Access

DEIA | Onboarding and Performance Management for Retention

According to Gallup Research, highly engaged organizations share common philosophies and practices. As the Great Resignation continues, employers are more willing to open their doors to employees from the Recent/Soon-to-be Graduates talent pipeline AND they want to retain that talent. That’s why it’s more important than ever to ensure there are common talent philosophies and practices from the beginning of an employee’s tenure. Creating a comprehensive onboarding checklist and rewarding your leaders for adhering to your company’s performance management process is a great place to start. 
Workforce Hot Topics
Top 3 Workforce Topics from January 2022

During January, our top 3 workforce consultation topics were Internships, Benefits, and Hiring and onboarding.

What workforce issues are impacting your business? This valuable data drives the resources and solutions to address our members’ top concerns. Share your priorities with Kelly Fuller at KellyFuller@columbus.org.
Workforce Community Needs & Resources
The Columbus Chamber Foundation’s goal is to connect identified potential pipelines to employers through facilitating connections and events that bring job seekers together with HR decision-makers. Our mission is to improve the economic well-being of under-served individuals through enhanced access to workforce development programming and employment opportunities.
Workforce Solutions
MORPC’s “Commute Action Fund” is a tool for Central Ohio Companies to fund new incentives and/or commute projects that motivate company associates to drive less and use sustainable modes of transportation to work. The fund aims to empower Central Ohio companies to take ownership of creating more sustainable commuter options for their workplace.

Central Ohio companies with over 250 associates in MORPC’s 15-county region may request up to $5,000 in a dollar-for-dollar match against their spending toward new sustainable commute projects that motivate employees to drive less. Employers with less than 250 associates in MORPC’s region will be eligible for up to $2,500 in dollar-for-dollar match funding. MORPC’s 15-county region includes Delaware, Fairfield, Fayette, Franklin, Hocking, Knox, Licking, Logan, Madison, Marion, Morrow, Pickaway, Perry, Ross, and Union Counties.

To apply, eligible companies must fill out the application located at https://morpc.gohio.com/commute-action-fund/ Funding requests will be evaluated on a rolling basis by a committee of MORPC employees. Commute Action Fund dollars are distributed on a reimbursement basis after reporting and documentation requirements are met.
Husted Announces Next Round of IMAP Training Provider Awards Ohio Lt. Governor Jon Husted, Director of the Governor’s Office of Workforce Transformation, today announced that 14 training providers located throughout the state will receive a total of $2.93 million in awards to support 2,336 credentials through the Individual Microcredential Assistance Program (IMAP). This is the second round of the initiative, which helps Ohioans who are low income, partially unemployed, or totally unemployed participate in a training program and receive one or more technology-focused credential(s) for free.

The selected training providers, which include four-year universities, career centers, and private businesses, will be reimbursed up to $3,000 for each completed technology-focused credential issued.

A variety of credential pathways that align with specific job opportunities will be available for individuals including IT Support Specialist, IT Security Associate, IT Networks Specialist, Data Analyst, Web Developer, UX/UI Designer, Robotic Technician, Digital Marketing Specialist, Cloud Engineer, and more. Training will be offered in-person and online, allowing Ohioans to take advantage of IMAP from anywhere in the state.

Ohio has invested more than $5 million in IMAP over the last two years. The first round of IMAP awarded 11 training providers just under $2.22 million in September of 2020. Individuals interested in earning a credential or learning more about the program can visit the recently updated IMAP website at: Workforce.Ohio.gov/IMAP
PolyPay is actively seeking Referral Advocates for their Referral Program. 

PolyPay is an independent sales organization that provides simple and cost-effective processing solutions to any business that wants to accept payments. They can support a variety of different businesses, including those that are mobile or online. 
A Referral Advocate is a values-driven individual who cares deeply about their community and wants to make a positive impact while supplementing their income. This is an opportunity that is ideal for an individual who may have a part-time role already or has extra time to devote to this during the week or on weekends. No experience is required and there is no minimum level of participation expected.
Learn more at www.polypay.com/referralprogram or call reach out at 805-592-2700.
Thought Leadership Library
Visit our Thought Leadership Library for information and better practices on topics including training, hiring, internships, culture, mental health, and more!

Finding and keeping employees is tougher today. Our latest thought leadership pieces, Minding the Gap: Setting the Stage and Minding the Gap: The She-Cession and Impact on Working Parents, addresses these gaps.
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Thanking our Key Partners