Case Study: System Boosts State’s Workforce Development Efforts
New job-matching portal is benefit to employers, job seekers and the state
A state’s Workforce Commission sought an original approach to building a stronger state economy and improving workforce development through easy and efficient matching of job seekers and employers. Previously, fewer than 5 percent of employers used the state’s recruitment and job-matching services. The Workforce Commission recognized the need for an improved Internet-based job-matching system as a critical component of recruitment efforts.
Initially, the Workforce Commission sought to create a new system based on an assumption that the capacity of the existing architecture was sufficient to support the application. But as development progressed, it became clear that additional capacity and a new architecture were required to handle the projected high volume of users.
se Deloitte Consulting LLP helped the state implement a new architecture and build a Web-based interface that allows citizens to access employment resources 24 hours a day, seven days a week from any computer with an Internet connection. The Web service also offers users flexibility through streamlined and advanced account functionality. Employers can open a single account with multiple subaccounts and have different levels of access, allowing them to post and monitor job positions in multiple locations across the state.
Employers, job seekers and staff from diverse areas of the state participated in joint application design sessions and provided feedback through usability and pilot testing to validate the design. Additional usability testing examined the effectiveness of the Spanish translation of the site, as local dialects could differ significantly. To ensure access for all the state’s citizens, the Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services and the School for the Blind and Visually Impaired conducted accessibility reviews.
The site launched in June 2004, and it has enjoyed high acceptance since. To date, it has helped more than 114,000 residents find employment. In one city, local workforce board executives worked with a major corporation to find qualified applicants for area job openings. The site helped the corporation fill open positions at facilities around the city while also facilitating dozens of area job-seeker hires.
The new architecture has proven successful and is handling the high volume of users with ease. Job-matching databases update in near real-time, ensuring that users have access to the latest job or résumé postings. The job-posting format allows employers to match multiple combinations of occupation experience and education, view detailed comparisons of job seekers with job requirements and create customized screening questions to obtain specific information from interested parties. Employers can set up multiple accounts for different hiring groups within their organization, manage their account and its users, and manage job postings. In addition, the site offers the Workforce Commission a technical platform adaptable to the long-term needs of the agency and the citizens it serves.
The site provides tangible cost and resource benefits to three distinct groups: employers, job seekers and Workforce Commission staff. For employers, the service provides a no-cost, efficient way to access qualified job seekers across the state, allowing them to save thousands of dollars in recruiting costs. For example, a business hiring 20 new employees a month can reduce hiring costs by up to $85,000 annually.
For job seekers, the site offers a no-cost, comprehensive employment resource that provides access to tens of thousands job postings across a wide variety of industries. Finally, the Workforce Commission benefits through better management of its staff. Users comfortable with a self-service Web environment no longer wait for information or rely heavily on workforce staff. This allows staff to concentrate on customers requiring more support and to add other services that help support economic growth and workforce development opportunities.