The Massachusetts Workforce Board Association is a business-led organization representing the 16 member regional workforce boards employers, representatives of labor, higher education, business and industry associations, economic development and workforce organizations, which provides leadership in workforce development in each region across the Commonwealth. The Association conducts timely labor market analysis, brokers relationships between business and industry and providers of education and training programs, and sets policy concerning management and allocation of federal and state workforce development resources to best serve job seekers and employers in their regions.
The Role of Local Workforce Investment Boards
Local Workforce Investment Boards (WIBs) lead the workforce development system through regional policy and oversight responsibilities for multiple funding streams and programs associated with all aspects of workforce development. These business-led Boards are charged with creating a more cohesive demand driven workforce development system, reflective of their region’s specific needs and resources, indicated by local market factors. WIBs conduct labor market studies to identify trends and develop innovative partnerships and strategies to address those trends, so that business and labor stay ahead of the curve to remain competitive. WIB members leverage their experience and their connections to those funding and providing language and literacy services to enhance the training and educational programs available to both jobseekers and the employers wishing to hire them.
Employment and business services are delivered primarily through One Stop Career Centers, grants and workforce development initiatives, which along with Youth Councils, are overseen by the WIBs.
One Stop Career Centers serve job seekers and employers through a variety of services and programs that better coordinate labor exchange among well-trained workers who can achieve financial self-sufficiency, and employers who invest in upgrading the skills of their workforce as a means to remain competitive and encourage economic growth.
37 One Stop Career Centers operate across the Commonwealth. Whether you are a business seeking skilled workers or a jobseeker looking for work or to develop skills to build a career, the Career Centers provide access to programs and information to help you reach your goals. Most services are free of charge. In some Centers, higher-level services are available for a fee.
Services for businesses include:
Applicant pre-screening, testing and assessment; assistance in planning job fairs and recruitment campaigns; information on labor market, training grants and tax credits.
Services for jobseekers include:
Job search assistance, and career counseling; access to broad array of job postings; workshops on job search strategies; resources such as computers, reference materials, and unemployment insurance services.
“The One-Stop Career Centers are administered locally by Workforce Investment Boards — comprised of business, government, education, labor and community leaders — to ensure that each center is meeting the needs of its community, in addition to providing a standard level of basic services.”
Youth Councils serve each region to develop comprehensive policies for youth education and training, support services, and career readiness programs that will increase their opportunities for economic growth and prosperity, and enhance their roles as active community members.
Youth Councils guide the planning process and leverage available financial, private sector, and service resources to best meet regional needs. They act as community conveners to identify problems and collectively develop solutions on behalf of youth. In addition to connecting in-school youth to post-secondary education and career opportunities, Council members also develop strategies to reach and re-direct out-of-school youth, through support and health care services, job search assistance, career information, training and support services, job readiness skill development, ABE and GED programs, English language literacy classes, as well as internships in industry and business.