SOURCE: City of San Jose

December 07, 2006 13:53 ET

New Work2Future "One-Stop" Builds Success for Employees and Businesses

Grand Opening Highlights Importance of Matching Skilled Talent With Marketplace Needs

SAN JOSE, CA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- December 7, 2006 -- The City of San Jose, America's 10th largest city, will celebrate the opening of a new Work2Future location, December 7 at 1290 Parkmoor Ave.

The all-day celebration will feature workshops and classes beginning at 8:30 a.m., guided tours at 10:30 a.m., and a welcome and keynote address and ribbon-cutting with Ron Gonzales, mayor of San Jose, Derek Wise, president and CEO of Global Netoptex, Inc., and Benny Boveda, district manager of Target at 11:30 a.m. This will be followed by a job fair at 2 p.m.

The event commemorates bringing under one roof (or "one-stop") a consortium of diverse partners, whose combined resources provide pre-paid employment and training services to job seekers and employers alike.

“We're committed to helping people prepare for jobs, and helping employers find good talent,” said San Jose Mayor Ron Gonzales. “Work2Future is one more example of our productive community partnerships to support economic success for both individuals and businesses.”

Work2Future (the "2" represents both the job seeker and employer) assists workers and job seekers with access to the tools they need to manage their careers through high quality information and services as well as help employers find skilled workers.

The goal of Work2Future is to strengthen the economic base in San Jose and Santa Clara County by increasing employment opportunities and job retention for all residents.

According to Jeff Ruster, deputy director of the City of San Jose's Office of Economic Development and leader of the Work2Future initiative, the opening of the new Parkmoor Avenue location does just that.

"We now have 66,000 square feet at a centralized location to better serve businesses and job seekers alike and to continue to expand services and partnerships. One of the first initiatives at the new location is a business incubator collaboration with the Silicon Valley Black Chamber of Commerce," Ruster said.

The intent for the new Work2Future location is to become a full development and employment destination for youth and adults.

Whether a visitor is fully employed and looking for a career change or a more rewarding job, Work2Future offers a comprehensive roster of training to ensure a job seeker has the necessary competitive skills in today's innovation economy marketplace.

"We want everyone to know that the one stop is available for enhancing careers -- no matter what career stage the job seeker is in," Ruster said.

For businesses, Work2Future extends its reach into all categories.

"There is no business we can't serve -- we offer services to the large, small, minority- and woman-owned firms equally, and can help them scale their needs when hiring or downsizing," Ruster said.

A wide-ranging business service that is a hallmark of the Work2Future system is the way this entity deals with small businesses.

"The way we are interacting with small businesses is unlike any other 'one-stop' in the U.S. We are bringing in new services to the small business owner's door. This unique delivery model means that we will work with the business owner to assess needs and work with our 25 partner organizations to formulate a roadmap to success. Plus, we listen to the needs of businesses and tailor training programs accordingly," Ruster said.

New training programs include sessions on diverse topics, such as ethics and advanced emergency training. All training programs are offered at no cost to businesses.

Recent statistics show that after the loss of 200,300 jobs during the most recent recession, San Jose is experiencing a modest growth of 11,200 jobs during the last three years. Ruster said that unemployment has declined but this may be due more to a shrinkage in overall workforce than an increase in jobs and cautions that there is still a lot of churn.

"Employees are getting laid off, but the jobs that are out there require a different set than the jobs that they previously held. To address this, we are working with education providers to build services that reflect the needs of the marketplace now and in the future and cover a broad range of sectors, including bioscience and other growth areas," Ruster said.

"We have traditionally served individuals with multiple barriers to employment. Migrant farm workers, individuals living in high poverty areas, foster youth are included in this set. Work2Future can help transition these job seekers to become viable candidates for jobs in today's employment environment by helping them with hard skills such as computer literacy as well as the soft skills that employees demand, including good English and good customer service skills."

Learn more about Work2Future at an opening celebration Thursday, December 7, 1290 Parkmoor Ave., San Jose. The event will feature tours, business and community builder awards, community partners, refreshments, music and a ribbon-cutting ceremony. For more information on the celebration, contact Diane Olsen at 408-277-3187. More information about Work 2Future can be found at the organization's web site at www.Work2Future.biz.

About Work2Future

Work2Future functions as the local administrative arm of the Workforce Investment Act of 1998. Work2Future operates three One-Stop Career Centers in the areas of San Jose, Campbell and South County. It also provides workforce development services for the cities of Los Gatos, Morgan Hill, Los Altos Hills, Saratoga, Monte Sereno, and the unincorporated areas of Santa Clara County.

About the City of San Jose's Office of Economic Development

The City of San Jose's Office of Economic Development (OED) is committed to a vital, competitive San Jose economy that increases prosperity for people and companies and enhances City revenues. The Office guides the City's economic strategy, provides assistance for business success, helps connect employers with trained workers, and provides art and cultural resources to our community. For more information, please visit, www.sjeconomy.com.

About the City of San Jose

From its founding in 1777 as California's first city, San Jose has been a leader, driven by its spirit of innovation. Today, San Jose stands as the largest city in Northern California and the Capital of Silicon Valley -- the world's leading center of innovation. The city, the 10th largest in the U.S., is committed to remaining a top-ranked place to do business, work, live, play and learn. For more information, visit, www.sanjoseca.gov.

Contact Information

  • Contact:

    Steven Brewster
    San Jose Office of Economic Development
    (408) 535-8168 land
    (415) 577-8851 mobile
    Email Contact