Register Now: Workforce Development Partnership Symposium

Don’t let workforce development puzzle you.

If you’re interested in advancing our state’s workforce, mark your calendar for this year’s South Carolina Workforce Development Partnership Symposium February 25-27 at the Columbia Marriott Hotel.

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This annual event is a great opportunity to hear best practices, collaborate on future endeavors, and learn about workforce innovations to help your business prosper and improve the lives of South Carolinians .

Nearly 300 individuals from every level of South Carolina’s workforce system attend each year including: businesses, State and Local Workforce Investment Board members, elected officials, workforce professionals, staff from partner agencies, economic development, and community-based organizations.

With your business’ participation and support, South Carolina can solve the workforce development puzzle.

We hope to see you there!

Click here for Conference Registration:

Early Bird Registration:  $150 After February 16, 2015  $175

On-Site Registration: $200

Click Here for Hotel Reservations

The Columbia Marriott (800) 593-6465 or (803) 771-7000

Government Rate:  $94* *Plus Applicable Taxes *

February 5 Deadline for Government Rate

Let SC Works Find the Right Candidates to Fill Your Jobs

SC Works Online Services (SCWOS), at scworks.org, is South Carolina’s most comprehensive job-search tool, fueled by the state’s largest workforce development database.

If you’re not posting your jobs on SCWOS, you’re missing out on a pool of more than 200,000 active jobseekers who are skilled and looking for employers just like you. Last year alone, more than 5,300 employers used SCWOS to post and fill more than 148,000 jobs.

SCworks employersGain your competitive edge by using SCWOS to post your positions, pre-screen applicants and review job market trends. It’s completely free. Visit scworks.org to register your business and get started today.

 

Everyone Plays a Role in Reemployment

With the steepest declining unemployment rate nationwide, South Carolina’s economy has bolstered in 2014. In fact, more South Carolinians are working than ever before, peaking most recently at 2,050,975 in May.

The successes of the state’s economy can be largely attributed to the businesses that call the Palmetto State home. Without the commitment to hire, thousands of South Carolinians would be unemployed and unable to support their families and themselves.

But did you know that in July alone, there were still 124,670 individuals unemployed in our state? Many of these are considered long-term unemployed or without a job for 27 weeks or more. The long-term unemployed comprise 82,000 jobseekers in South Carolina alone and 3.2 million jobseekers nationwide.

Untitled-2The South Carolina Department of Employment and Workforce (DEW) offers a variety of job placement services. In SC Works centers across the state, the agency provides free skills development workshops and training opportunities to those who are eligible. Last year, DEW sent 5,643 jobseekers through training to upgrade existing skills or learn a completely new trade.

If you’re looking for that next great hire, DEW has a portfolio of interested candidates. In 2014, more than 200,000 jobseekers have searched for work using SC Works Online Services.

Let DEW play matchmaker and save you money by putting an unemployed person back to work. Here are a few of the programs DEW offers to businesses interested in hiring unemployed jobseekers with barriers to employment.

  • On-the-Job Training (OJT) – This incentive compensates you for time spent training individuals for customized skill sets. The reimbursement period varies by the specific skill set you are training for. OJT will pay up to 90 percent of your new hire’s wages for up to 26 weeks.
  • Federal Bonding – Provides six months of free insurance protection against concerns you have about an applicant’s background. This program is valued at an average of $5,000 per individual.
  • Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) – Hire an individual from a targeted population and save on federal taxes. You must submit your tax credit request within 28 days of the worker’s start date. Employees must work at least 400 days before the tax credit can be claimed. WOTC can reduce your taxes anywhere between $2,400 and $9,600.
  • Apprenticeship Credit – State tax credits can be claimed annually for up to four years on a registered apprenticeship. This incentive averages about $1,000 per apprenticeship per year.

Visit dew.sc.gov to learn more about how DEW can match you with your new hire and connect you to the right cost-savings resources. Together, we can reduce unemployment and improve the quality of life for thousands of South Carolinians.

Spotlight on Retired Businessman Giving Back: Book Offers Real-World Job Search Advice

 

Frank Munson worked in a job he truly loved for more than 40 years.

That’s why he wants to help others land the jobs of their dreams.

A Columbia native and retired award-winning sales manager turned consultant, Munson co-authored “Getting the Right Job: A Personal Guide to Developing Your Career,” which was recently published by Pearson Learning Solutions.

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The book is being used this semester in the Darla Moore School of Business at the University of South Carolina in a course for juniors, seniors and graduate students, according to Munson. The book’s other authors are Moore School Distinguished Lecturer John Stern and Newberry College Associate Dean for Educational Services Jane Willis.

The trio combined their business and academic expertise to create the practical textbook that includes an online assessment tool based on The Birkman Method, which integrates behavioral, motivational and occupational data to predict behavior and work satisfaction across situations. The book walks the reader through his or her assessment results, job search preparation, networking, and interviewing.

Munson tested the process on an Emory University School of Law student, and the young man changed his perspective, viewing a job search as a sales opportunity.

“He realized , ‘I’ve got to go in and sell myself like I would sell a product,’” Munson said.

Munson originally envisioned the book as a tool for college students and recent grads but said he would highly recommend it to military service members looking for civilian jobs, unemployed and underemployed individuals and even employed people who are still looking for the right job that “nurtures their spirits.”

“A lot of people in business believe it’s just the bottom line, but you can have a nurturing atmosphere,” he said, reflecting on his career as a sales manager, speaking about colleagues and employees as if they were family members. “The hallmark of this book is that it nurtures the spirit.”

Spartanburg Veterans Featured on Fox Sports; Segment Highlights How They Got Hired

NASCAR Truck racing fans recently got the chance to learn about how newly-hired veterans make great hires in the civilian workforce.

Three Spartanburg veterans who found jobs thanks to help from the SC Department of Employment and Workforce (DEW) were spotlighted during the Careers for Veterans 200 broadcast in August on Fox Sports.

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Presented by the Cooper Standard Foundation and Brad Keselowski’s Checkered Flag Foundation , the race coverage featured Jeffery Nicholson, Joshua Klootwyk and Stafford Smith. They work at the Spartanburg Cooper Standard plant and all were referred to the company by DEW representatives.

In fact, Cooper Standard and DEW have forged a strong partnership during the past seven years.

“These guys are really good about getting vets, finding guys about to be discharged and forward thinking,” Cooper Standard Human Resources Manager Warren Snead said of DEW Spartanburg veterans’ staff Eric McAbee and John Lee.

Take Jeffery Nicholson, who retired last year after 20 years in the Coast Guard. This New Hampshire native wanted to retire in South Carolina and be close to family. He connected with McAbee, who assisted with a job search and referred him to Cooper Standard.

“He was so enthusiastic about helping me find a good job, one equivalent to what I did in service,” Nicholson said of McAbee. “It was a little tough at first, but he was always throwing something my way.”

Today, Nicholson is the second shift supervisor at Cooper Standard, where he oversees more than 55 people. He started as a production associate in September 2013 and three months later moved up to a team coordinator before getting the most recent promotion.

He said Cooper Standard welcomed him with open arms and provides a great working environment for veterans. The company in February formalized its commitment to hiring veterans at the urging of the National Association of Manufacturers and actor Gary Sinise, of “Forrest Gump” fame who started a foundation to help military service members, veterans and first responders. Cooper Standard partnered with NASCAR driver Keselowski, and in May the two announced they would sponsor the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at Michigan International Speedway.

The Careers for Veterans 200 further supports Cooper Standard’s mission to recruit and hire top talent at a national level.  According to company officials, since formalizing the veterans initiative earlier this year Cooper Standard has increased its veterans’ workforce by 16 percent.

In the Spartanburg facility, that success is due in part to the relationship between DEW veterans’ representatives and Snead.

“Most of the time we can get an interview right out of their office,” Snead said of McAbee and Lee. “I have even popped into their office… Eric and John and the folks in the DEW office in Spartanburg have done a remarkable job helping us field our expansion.”

He added with a laugh, “I should give them Cooper Standard business cards.”

A DEW veterans’ representative can help your business recruit qualified candidates and explain the advantages, including potential tax credits, for hiring veterans. Find a veterans representative near you here.

Read more about Cooper Standard’s Careers for Veterans here.

 

 

New Hire Reminder: It’s Never Too Late to Report

The SC Department of Employment and Workforce (DEW) this summer sent notices to about 1,000 businesses reminding them to report newly hired or re-hired employees to the S.C. New Hire database.

Part of an ongoing campaign to generate awareness about new hire reporting, the letters were targeted to businesses that records showed may not have reported to the database.

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Not only is reporting your company’s new hires a legal requirement, it also benefit your organization’s bottom line. Accurate new hire data ultimately lowers S.C. businesses’ unemployment tax rates by helping to prevent unemployment insurance fraud.

DEW cross matches data from the S.C. New Hire directory with information in DEW’s unemployment benefits system. Comparing this data enables DEW to prevent fraud and identify people who are illegally collecting unemployment benefits while also being employed.

Research shows that the majority of all unemployment benefit overpayments are caused by claimants improperly collecting benefits after they have returned to work.

DEW educates claimants on the importance of stopping their claims when they begin work rather than when they collect their first paycheck.

However, the agency also encourage employers, like you, to report all new and rehired workers to the S.C. New Hire database at scnewhire.com.

For more information, visit dew.sc.gov/scnewhire.

More Workers Reported to New Hire Registry; Businesses Encouraged to Keep Up the Trend

Thanks to all the S.C. businesses that have been reporting newly hired employees to the S.C. New Hire database.

From December 2013 to March 2014, there was a steady increase in the number of new employees submitted to the system. DEW encourages you to continue reporting because it helps the agency combat fraud and keep your tax rates down.

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Research shows the top reason for unemployment overpayments and fraud is claimants still collecting unemployment after they have returned to work. DEW cross matches data from the new hire directory with information in its unemployment benefits system. This enables DEW to identify people who are collecting unemployment benefits while also being employed.

DEW educates claimants on the importance of stopping their claims when they begin work and not when they collect their first paycheck. In addition, it asks you to report all new workers to the state new hire database at scnewhire.com.

Learn more at dew.sc.gov/scnewhire.

 

Free Resource Offers Guide to Tax Process

The Unemployment Tax process sometimes can be challenging to understand. That’s why the S.C. Department of Employment and Workforce (DEW) recently unveiled a handy reference brochure offering a simple, step-by-step unemployment tax overview.

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It is available free for download and printing here.  It also is included in materials as part of the Withholding Tax Workshops held monthly in partnership with the SC Department of Revenue. The next session is a webinar July 31. Learn more and sign up for the free class here.

Unemployment taxes are a necessary cost of doing business, and you can play an active role in controlling these costs by understanding the process. The brochure includes information on how to set up an account, what your reporting responsibilities are and contact information for representatives at DEW who can assist you.

South Carolina Breaks All-Time Employment Record

Recently-released figures show that 2013 was a banner year for total employment in South Carolina.  More South Carolinians were employed by the end of the year than ever before in the state’s history.

South Carolina’s employment level exceeded the two-million mark in November 2012 and remained above the two-million level throughout 2013. Prior to this, the last time employment exceeded two-million was in July of 2008.

The number of South Carolinians employed in December 2013 was 2,025,887 – more than 3,035 employed than the state’s previous high of 2,022,852 in November 2013. The most recent figures from April 2014 show 2,050,776 employed people in the state.

“Having more South Carolinians employed than at any other time in our state’s history didn’t happen by chance – it’s the direct result of Team South Carolina’s strategic effort to recruit and expand businesses in every corner of our state,” said Governor Nikki Haley. “This is a real testament to our ever growing business community and world-class workforce and we couldn’t be more excited to keep these jobs coming in and getting every person in our state back to work.”

“This is amazing news for South Carolina because it shows that the state’s economy continues to improve and as a result businesses are hiring,” said Cheryl M. Stanton, DEW executive director. “We will continue to do our part to develop the state’s workforce to meet our employers’ needs and to get to a point where every South Carolinian who wants to work can.”

Furthermore, comparing data from January of 2012 to December of 2013, the state has seen an increase in the employment level by approximately 48,620 people, reflecting on-going progress over the nearly two-year period.

Read the state’s April employment situation here. The May figures will be released June 20.

DEW Makes Early Unemployment Trust Fund Loan Repayment

The SC Department of Employment and Workforce (DEW) recently made a voluntary payment of $60 million to the federal government for the agency’s unemployment trust fund loan.

“Making this $60 million early repayment and saving the taxpayers and businesses of South Carolina $1.4 million in interest is great news and exactly what is possible when a state sees the kind of economic growth and success that we have,” Governor Nikki Haley said the week the payment was made. “With our unemployment rate at a six year low and more people working than ever before, it’s clear we are moving in the right direction, and today’s announcement is further proof that it’s paying off for the people of our state.”

“For the past three years, South Carolina has made early, voluntary repayments to the trust fund loan, further saving the state, and ultimately its businesses’ interest costs,” said DEW Executive Director Cheryl M. Stanton. “Making this $60 million early loan payment could not be possible without the work of the state’s business community in improving South Carolina’s economy faster than expected.  In fact, South Carolina has more than 77,000 additional people working today than when the 2014 tax rates were set.”

DEW set the 2014 tax rates in September 2013 when the federal government estimated that 1,968,209 South Carolinians were working (August 2013).  In March 2014, the estimates are that 2,046,000 people are working in South Carolina, leading to additional, unanticipated tax collections by DEW.

Additionally, South Carolina has paid nearly $23 million less in unemployment insurance benefits from October 1, 2013 through April 2014 in relation to the corresponding time period from the prior year.

With the recent $60 million loan repayment, the state’s outstanding loan balance falls below $400 million to $396 million. To date, South Carolina has repaid more than $580 million of the $977 million borrowed from the federal government. The state is scheduled to repay the entire loan amount by the end of 2015.

Since becoming a borrowing state, the Palmetto State has been the only state to receive a waiver to avoid higher federal unemployment taxes for businesses.  In fact, South Carolina has been granted this waiver for three consecutive years.