Career Development and Training in South Carolina

Career Development and Training in South Carolina

WorkSC

WorkSC is a collaborative effort developed by the South Carolina State Libraries, government, community organizations and citizens to assist individuals at any stage of the job search process. Initially created as a tool to help entry-level candidates, the program has expanded to include displaced workers, retirees, teens and anyone else interested in joining the public or private workforce in South Carolina.

Many of the resources are computer-based programs. Therefore, if someone is not familiar with the technological job search process, WorkSC offers programs at libraries to teach computer basics such as setting up email accounts, preparing resumes using word processing software, and registering and using government and commercial job search applications.

For those who prefer self-service, online software, WorkSC has a comprehensive database called the LearningExpress Library. This compilation of self-assessments, job descriptions, practice exams, e-Books, and much more is available for any education or career level. An expansive information resource on everything from skill sharpening, occupational requirements, certification acquisition, or how to use job banks is accessible through LearningExpress.

WorkSc posts a calendar of job fairs on its front page. A blog is available to give citizens the opportunity to discuss job hunting experiences or pass on possible job leads. To access WorkSC, visit worksc.org.

Work Ready SC

Work Ready SC is an assessment and credentialing system that allows employees to earn WorkReady SC Career Readiness Certificates. These certificates are a measure of an assortment of fundamental workplace skills that show employers what capabilities candidates possess and to what degree.

The evaluation system used by South Carolina is called WorkKeys. WorkKeys provides training courses, skill assessments, participating employer job descriptions, geographical economic data, and much more to a network of partners that have made a commitment to the employment and fiscal growth of a specific region. Although WorkKeys is a national initiative, South Carolina is the third-leading user of this comprehensive program.

WorkKeys was a grassroots effort by South Carolina to streamline an ineffective skills assessment and communication process into a productive employment network. In the late 1990s, a small group of business professionals, educators, and Workforce Investment Act (WIA) resources were using a form of the WorkKeys method. In an effort to establish best practices and provide support among partners, they created the South Carolina WorkKeys Users Group (SCWKUG).

The SCWKUG was so effective in placing applicants, the business community quickly became actively involved in WorkKeys. Over 250 employers belong to South Carolina's WorkKeys system.

Prior to adopting WorkKeys, South Carolina did not have any statewide consistency in assessing the value of its workforce. Together with organizations such as the South Carolina Chamber of Commerce's Workforce Innovation Network, the Palmetto Institute, and the Workforce Education Task Force of the Council on Competitiveness, a statewide communication exchange was formed to create one system of assessment standards and evaluation techniques.

Today, local WIA programs, vocational institutions, technical college administrators, adult education representatives, local businesses and industry collaborate to set objectives, tactics, and implement strategy that keep Work Ready SC a valuable statewide resource. To learn more about Work Ready SC, visit www.workreadysc.com.