2~Workforce Development
Workforce Development
Workforce Matters: 1.15
The North Dakota Department of Commerce Workforce Development’s Workforce Matters  is a quarterly newsletter that informs private and public partners about the latest workforce news affecting our state.
Use this publication as a resource for tips on how to recruit talent for your business, ways to engage newly hired employees, and success stories from companies who have used state programs to achieve a goal. 

Bobcat Company’s co-op program: An investment in the future


With around 100 student co-ops across seven U.S. locations, Bobcat Company is investing in the future. Bobcat Company’s co-op program not only gives students valuable real-world experience, it provides a pipeline of qualified candidates for future full-time positions and injects fresh ideas, motivation and productivity into the organization.

“By the time a co-op assignment ends, many students feel like full-time employees,” said Allison Wilson, university relationship representative. For some, that feeling doesn’t end. In 2013 and 2014, 18 co-ops were hired for full-time positions after graduating. In fact, many long-term employees also got their start as co-ops.

While Bobcat Company’s co-op recruitment efforts span the U.S. via the web and campus visits, much of the activity happens right here in North Dakota through a partnership with North Dakota State University (NDSU). Not only does the company recruit potential co-ops at NDSU, it also collaborates with the NDSU College of Engineering to sponsor senior design projects and is involved with research and test projects at the NDSU Research Park. In addition, full-time employees regularly serve as guest lecturers in marketing and engineering classes.

The co-op program and partnership with NDSU gives students a glimpse of the construction equipment industry and, in turn, gives students a reason to stay in North Dakota. 

Learn more about Bobcat’s Coop Program.

Bringing interactivity to welding instruction

NVCTC.JPGNorth Valley Career and Technology Center (NVCTC), located in Grafton, is using interactive equipment with telecommunications-based distance learning as a way to expand student opportunities in learning the skills associated with welding technology. The system brings the instructor to the student real-time and synchronized.  This system allows the students to gain real hands-on lab experience with a qualified instructor to assist in the skill building process.  NVCTC was awarded a North Dakota Career and Technical Education (CTE) grant to purchase and install broadcast equipment and welding instructional equipment in the four participating schools.  Instructor Bryan Stastny uses high definition monitors to observe students work in each of the schools and security system cameras are installed in each location for an overall look at classroom activity. 

Goals of the project:
  • Making instructor available to more students in a real-time learning experience;
  • Providing additional remote CTE lab sites which allow more students hands-on lab opportunities;
  • Delivering instruction by highly skilled and qualified instructors for students in remote or rural settings;
  • Developing a model that effectively uses interactive video delivery in a lab and classroom setting to multiple sites;
  • Providing instruction in the area of welding technology.

Classes are taught among three locations Park River, Fordville-Lankin, and Wallhalla-North Border. Students in upper level high school can enroll in the opportunity. 

Learn more about NVCTC and the interactive welding program.  

Find The Good Life: The Recruiter Network

foundation.jpgThe Recruiter Network is part of Economic Development Foundation’s Find the Good Life in North Dakota Initiative. Find the Good Life targets out-of-state job seekers in attempt to invite them to North Dakota to fill needed positions available within every sector of business while improving the nation’s image of North Dakota. 

Through partnership and education, Commerce has created a Recruiter Network, which allows collaboration among businesses and recruiters to connect people to career opportunities while serving as a resource network.

Goals of the Recruiter Network
Commerce held an employer focus group meeting in September to determine the needs and goals of the network. An intake survey with the focus group members was also conducted. The survey results and discussions identified three major goals:
  1. Share best practices
  2. Help attract people to North Dakota                                      
  3. Sounding board for retention/hiring issues
With these goals in mind, a preliminary slate of deliverables has been developed, including a series of quarterly meetings and an annual event to network with other experts who understand recruitment/retention issues. During these meetings, members will receive information on North Dakota hiring events and the upcoming Find the Good Life events, including the opportunity to send a list of available positions or attend events in tandem with Find the Good Life. Meeting topics will  include a best practices sharing piece/education aspect such as company information sharing, reading military resumes or retention plans. A virtual space for resume sharing and distribution has been developed and an out-of-state WARN notice outreach program has been outlined.  

Questions, comments, or commitments, please direct to Wayde Sick or Amanda Remynse.

Reading a resume with military experience

Hiring an applicant with military experience can be valuable to your business for many reasons. They have leadership skills, perform well under pressure, have a respect for procedures, and can contribute to teamwork effectively. They also have job skills that they have likely done consistently for the period they were enlisted or perhaps, deployed. But, reviewing their resume for their qualifications to the advertising position can be a battle. 

Knowing a basic terminology can be helpful. The concept of enlisted/non-commissioned officer versus officer/warrant officer is the same across the board for all branches. Each of these will have an entry level up to present skill level. An extensive conversion chart of the military rank structure for all branches and what the civilian experience level could be equivalent to would benefit any HR department.

Additional questions regarding hiring military personnel or understanding military resumes can be directed to Brandi Bender or Marlys Morgernstern

North Dakota Compass update, legislative district info available

NDCompass.pngNorth Dakota Compass and North Dakota KIDS COUNT have teamed up to create demographic and socio-economic profiles for North Dakota State Legislative Districts. Available information includes statistics on population, household, social, and economic characteristics for all legislative district. Each profile compares district information with North Dakota and the United States. The goal of these publications is to inform, educate, create awareness, and generate discussion. 

View Legislative District Profiles.

Connect with North Dakota workforce development programs

  • Job Service North Dakota – Post jobs, search resumes, receive applications, and access current labor market information, all online. Business services consultants meet personally with employers and assist in developing recruitment strategies that may include company-specific hiring events, labor market information and suggestions for creating effective job postings on the state’s primary job exchange website.
  • Operation Intern – Available to North Dakota employers for North Dakota students, this program provides up to $3,000 in matching funds per student, per term for a maximum of $6,000 per student, and a maximum of $30,000 per employer in a biennium. 
  • Apprenticeship  – Registered apprenticeship provides paid on-the-job training with related technical instruction in a highly skilled occupation. It is used for both non-union and union career opportunities. 
  • Workforce 20/20 – Provides matching funds to employers to offset the cost of training North Dakota incumbent workers and new employees. Training focus is on production, manufacturing – new methods or technology.
  • North Dakota New Jobs Training – Provides incentives to primary sector businesses that are creating new jobs. The program provides a means for businesses to obtain no-cost funding to offset workforce related cost associated with startup and training of new employees.
  • TrainND – State supported program for the four designated training institutions of higher education (Lake Region State College, North Dakota State College of Science, Bismarck State College and Williston State College). Provides comprehensive, customized worker training to meet employer-defined needs.
To sign up for this free electronic newsletter visit NDWorkforce.com and click “sign up for e-news” and check Workforce Development. 

North Dakota Department of Commerce
1600 E. Century Ave., Suite 2
Bismarck, ND 58503 | 701.328.5300
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