Welcome to the inaugural issue of the State Workforce Development Board (SWDB) newsletter. This monthly publication will provide you with information regarding the work being done to create and promote a ready and skilled workforce. The board, chaired by Mikee Johnson CEO of Cox Industries, provides direction to the state’s workforce system on issues pertaining to labor force development, particularly those concerning the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA).
The mission of SWDB is to create a competitive workforce advantage for South Carolina by ensuring that a quality and effective workforce system exists in order to improve the prosperity of businesses and the lives of South Carolinians.
The board is comprised of a majority of business leaders. Other members include legislators of the South Carolina Senate and House, local elected officials, workforce partners and representatives of community-based organizations. Members of the board are appointed by and serve at the pleasure of Gov. Nikki Haley.
Two issues the board has initiated are the S.C. Talent Pipeline and SC Work Ready Communities project.
S.C. Talent Pipeline is the newest initiative where the state workforce system has partnered with the S.C. Department of Commerce, S.C. Department of Education and the S.C. Technical College System to provide a workforce supply chain for the state’s growing industries.
S.C. Talent Pipeline strategies take a comprehensive, broad-based approach to identifying and addressing skill needs across key industries within a region rather than focusing on the workforce needs of individual businesses on a case-by-case, transactional basis.
The local groups will be relying on businesses to provide input on job skills needed now and in the future.
The Work Ready Communities project has grown substantially as South Carolina has become the first state in the nation to have all of its counties certified as Work Ready. Under this program and the use of WorkKeys testing, employers can match jobseekers wit jobs based on their skill sets and individuals can identify careers that align with their results.
The certification allows the county to demonstrate to potential businesses that they can provide them with a skilled workforce.
The board is working on many other projects from apprenticeships to incumbent workers training all to support South Carolina businesses.