Greenville, MS—Washington County today announced it has met all criteria to continue as a certified ACT Work Ready Community, demonstrating its commitment to developing a strong workforce pipeline desirable to employers, economic developers, and current and future citizens of the county.
The ACT® Work Ready Communities (ACT® WRC) initiative empowers states, regions and counties with data, processes and tools that drive economic growth by identifying skills gaps and quantifying the skill level of their workforce. Participants leverage the ACT® WorkKeys® National Career Readiness Certificate® (ACT® WorkKeys® NCRC®) to measure and close skills gaps and build common frameworks that link, align, and match their workforce development efforts.
“The WRC initiative has proven valuable time and time again when assessing workforce for existing and potential industries in our community,” said WCEA Executive Director Will Coppage. “We have continued to strive to complete all required benchmarks for ACT. By being awarded Maintained Level 5, it shows we take workforce seriously and that is something site selectors and potential industries look for in a community.”
To begin the certification process, in 2016 Washington County leaders attended the ACT Work Ready Communities Boot Camp, an executive leadership and training program designed and led by ACT to initiate, deploy, and drive carefully tailored efforts to improve the county’s work readiness. Leaders met with local employers, policymakers, educators, and economic developers to establish goals and build a sustainable WRC model to fit community needs. Since then, ACT provides additional benchmarks to maintain certification.
“Congratulations to Washington County for becoming an ACT Work Ready Community and joining a growing list of counties dedicated to building a robust workforce,” said ACT Regional Manager of Workforce Initiatives, Tony Garife. “The efforts of the county leadership to achieve WRC certification will provide the community with a tremendous economic development advantage and help it stand out for its workforce development efforts.”
For more information on this initiative, go to www.workreadycommunities.org and view all of ACT’s workforce solutions at www.act.org/workforce