The Ontario East Economic Development Commission (or Ontario East for short) promotes eastern Ontario as an excellent place to do business. Ontario East supports business growth and attracts new businesses to the region. One of the target sectors that is experiencing growth is advanced manufacturing and materials technology, and there is an established cluster of manufacturing plants in the eastern Ontario region.
3 Ways Ontario East Is Helping Attract Tomorrow’s Workforce
In an effort to continue to support the growth of eastern Ontario’s strong manufacturing sector, Ontario East formed the Eastern Ontario Manufacturing Workforce Development Project (EOMWDP). The project’s main goals are to identify and address predicted challenges in hiring, retaining, and attracting a qualified workforce to eastern Ontario’s manufacturing industry.
In order to effectively attract the best and brightest, and maximize the available workforce for the growing companies in the region, the EOMWDP is working to spread a positive perception of manufacturing. There are three main messages and actions that are being communicated through this project:
1. Promoting Excellent First-Choice Careers in Manufacturing
One of Ontario East’s primary objectives is to generate the enthusiasm and excitement around manufacturing that the industry deserves. Not only is manufacturing a backbone of the region’s economy, employing 65,000 people, but it’s also an incredibly diverse, high-tech, constantly improving industry.
People who love problem solving, using the latest tools and computers, or solving complex multi-disciplinary issues will thrive in manufacturing. So now, the EOMWDP is encouraging people to apply to open positions or seek training and education in areas that support this tech-heavy industry.
In addition, there are myths that need to be debunked about the state of a career in manufacturing. Ontario East is actively communicating how clean, safe, and bright modern manufacturing plants are. Though the industry may have gotten a bad reputation in the past, it is truly a cutting-edge, well-regulated, technologically advanced career that any employee would enjoy working in every day.
2. Showcasing Eastern Ontario as a Desirable Place to Call Home
The EOMWDP is working to maximize the available labour pool for the manufacturers in the region, which means it’s looking all across Ontario to attract skilled workers. While the careers are enjoyable, challenging, and fulfilling, the community that the workforce lives in is equally important.
Ontario East is promoting cities and towns like Belleville, Kingston, Northumberland County, and Quinte West as attractive locations to call home. These cities have all the amenities a family could desire - like culture, outdoor parks and recreation - and the huge added bonus of massive affordability. People currently working in Toronto and Ottawa may be unaware that there is equally appealing work in eastern Ontario, but with the ability to actually afford their dream home.
3. Connecting Education and Training With the Future Workforce
As economic development professionals, Ontario East is well-connected to workforce development agencies and experts, as well as to local business owners. Ontario East is in a position to now connect educators and training programs, which already exist in the region, to the future workforce.
Whether it’s a university program, or a college apprenticeship in a skilled trade that supports manufacturing, Ontario East is working to promote these education options to job seekers across Ontario. In addition, it’s working to promote the training programs that prepare workers for a job in manufacturing without an apprenticeship or degree, such as the free Elevate Plus program. In this way, there is a training solution for every person that is seeking employment in the region.
Ontario East Is Supporting Manufacturing and Residents
Ontario East, with intimate knowledge (gained through the EOMWDP) of the challenges in attracting a skilled workforce, is working to promote career paths in manufacturing. Attracting skilled workers is necessary to support the region’s economy. The workers also benefit, as manufacturing provides a highly secure, well-paid, and enjoyable career.
Ontario East Tackles the Challenges in Hiring the Next Generation
Attracting a workforce to manufacturing is challenging enough, but one very specific challenge is attracting the next generation to the manufacturing workforce. To find out more about the challenges in attracting the next generation to the manufacturing workforce, download the following e-book for insights: