I was recently laid off, how can you help me?
You may first want to register for unemployment compensation. You can register online 24 hours day, 7 days/week at http://unemployment.Ohio.gov or call toll free 1-877-644-6562. For TTY service dial toll free: 1-888-642-8203.
Interested jobseekers can also access an online orientation and customer registration by visiting www.employmentconnection.us. You can also visit our Career Centers at any time to view job postings and use our computers, phones, fax machine and copier for job search purposes. If you want further assistance, one of our career managers can assist you in your job search. Workshops on interviewing, resumes and other topics are available to help you succeed in securing employment.
Funding is available to help laid off members with training and/or upgrade skills or change careers altogether. We also collaborate with the United Labor Agency, an organization specifically designed to service the dislocated worker.
When is orientation?
Onsite Orientations occurs at different times and days throughout the Employment Connection system. Generally, there is an orientation offered almost every day of the week. There are also evening orientations held two days a week at the Bolivar office. Interested jobseekers can also access an online orientation and customer registration by visiting www.employmentconnection.us.
I do not know what to say during interviews, what should I do?
You should attend an Employment Connection Interviewing Techniques Workshop. It will teach you the fundamentals of interviewing. You learn what to do before, during, and after the interview. The class provides information on the most commonly asked interview questions. You may also enroll in additional workshops and classes using the course scheduling database at www.employmentconnection.us.
During an interview it is key to answer each question in a positive way. Never respond to a question negatively. Regardless of what you are asked, always end your response in a positive manner. To prepare for an interview, participate in an Employment Connection mock interview class. During a mock interview, an instructor interviews you just as an employer would, while a video camera is recording. The mock interview is intended to provide members with constructive feedback so that they can engage in a more positive and productive interview that will lead to securing employment.
What is OMJ?
OMJ is an Ohio website that stands for OhioMeansJobs.com. OMJ provides both free job search and job matching opportunities. OMJ links employers to Ohio–based talent and enables them to post job opportunities. OMJ allows jobseekers to search electronic job opportunities, which include Ohio employers, national commercial job boards and niche industries.
OhioMeansJobs.com has partnered with the national leading resume provider, Monster.com to help jobseekers market their skills to employers and post their resumes within the state of Ohio and beyond.
I did not finish high school, how can you help me?
Obtaining a high school diploma or GED (General Equivalency Diploma) greatly increases employment opportunities. Most employers require that applicants possess a high school diploma or GED. Because Employment Connection understands this requirement, GED instruction is available at our Bolivar and Brookpark One Stop sites (see listing below). Employment Connection frequently refers members to educational resources. Several community agencies offer assistance in obtaining a GED. The Adult Basic and Literacy Education (ABLE) program is a GED preparation tool, which increases basic skills. This program is also available in Spanish. Employment Connection members frequently use the organizations listed below for GED assistance:
Cleveland Municipal School District at Employment Connection, 1020 Bolivar - 664-4673
Parma City School District at Employment Connection, 11699 Brookpark - 898-1366
Cleveland Metropolitan School District at Max Hayes, 4600 Detroit Ave - 634-2137
Cuyahoga Community College at Metro Campus, United Technology Center - 987-3201
*Not all locations are noted here, but your local career center can refer you to the most convenient location.
What if I have a disability?
Each Employment Connection Center is equipped with materials that will assist disabled individuals in utilizing our services. ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) approved materials, including a large screen computer with wheelchair access, are on hand at each location. Items, such as hearing enhancements, large print reading materials, and tools for reading/math comprehension, are available as well. Disability Specialists, employees of Employment Connection, are available for consultation with you and Employment Connection staff to assist in accessing community and/or government agency services as necessary.
What kind of training will Employment Connection fund?
Employment Connection will fund training that leads to gainful employment and meets our occupations in demand criteria. The Department of Labor determines occupations, which fall in this category. Exceptions to the occupations in demand criteria must identify the occupation for which training is to occur, the reason for requesting an exception and documented evidence of employment. Each Employment Connection Center can provide you with a list of these occupations in demand.
My caseworker recommended this program, how do I get started?
When you attend orientation or complete the online orientation and customer registration, be sure to indicate your public assistance status on your application. All customers receiving OWF (Ohio Works First) cash benefits must have formal authorization from their caseworker. We must verify the authorization with your caseworker before proceeding. After this confirmation, we will move quickly to expedite your application.
When can I start training?
In order to start a training program you must first be determined WIA (Workforce Investment Act) eligible and a suitable candidate before funding can be approved. The eligibility process is a matter of obtaining certain documentation from you, such as identification, proof of citizenship, income and selective service registration. Once eligibilility has been determined, you would then attend employment workshops, undergo the appropriate career assessments and testing and complete the required Individual Training Account paperwork for final approval. As a condition of eligibility, members must apply for federal funded financial aid through FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid).
Before WIA funding is applied, FAFSA must be used first since WIA is a last resort source of funding. Much of this process is customer driven so the actual time involved will vary depending upon your participation.
Do all training providers have the same credentials?
No. We have a wide variety of training programs offered; therefore, the credentials and certifications and/or certificate of completions for coursework vary.
What if my training provider is not on the approved list?
To access WIA funding for training, customers must use training providers approved by the State of Ohio and the City/Cuyahoga County Workforce Investment Board (WIB). Many important factors are used in determining the approval of providers. Training providers must offer a relevant curriculum that meets current workforce needs. The rate at which students successfully complete training and secure employment post-graduation are critical factors in the approval process. There is an extensive range of certified providers offering training in various demand occupations. Each career center has a database of certified providers. For further information regarding these providers, inquire with your local Employment Connection career center.
If a provider is interested in going on the state list, they need to use the eligible Training Provider Online (ETPO) system. To access ETPO, use https://ohiomeansjobs.com/etpo/.
What if I have outstanding student loans?
You may still qualify for tuition assistance through Employment Connection. We provide grant assistance, which does not require repayment. Depending on the selected training, we may be able to cover the full cost of tuition. Although this assistance may be available, make every effort to resolve your student loan debt.
Defaulting on a student loan can cause significant problems. You can begin to resolve that situation today by contacting the student loan company who will help you establish a reasonable payment plan. Most student loan companies have a default plan, whereby once you have made a number of timely payments (usually six); you may be considered for an additional loan amount. You will need to continue to make payments as established, so working full- or part-time while attending school is advised.
Why do I have to take a math and reading test?
The TABE (Test of Adult Basic Education) assessment is based on an eighth grade math and reading level. Generally, eighth grade proficiency is a basic requirement for most employers. TABE scores are a good predictor of success in training and allow your career manager to assess your skill level. Most training will require some component of math and reading. The test is a preparation tool, which indicates whether a customer is ready to proceed in training.
I did not pass the TABE test. What should I do?
The TABE test can be re-administered to customers after adequate preparation. Employment Connection has several resources to assist you in preparing to re-take the test. There is an official online TABE Pretest site http://www.testprepreview.com/tabe_practice.htm. Many customer have found this website helpful. The subjects most often covered in the TABE test include:
Averages & Rounding
Fractions & Square Roots
Geometry & Measurements
Percents & Ratios
Basic Reading & Comprehension
Reading for the Main Idea
Issues, such as childcare and transportation, have kept me from working or pursuing training, how can you help me?
Employment Connection works with an agency that provides supportive services to WIA eligible customers. The goal is to eliminate barriers to employment. Childcare, transportation, uniforms, tools and legal assistance are some of the services available. Your career manager can refer you for supportive services while you are in training or just beginning a new job. If you receive cash assistance, childcare and transportation can be provided by your caseworker while you are in training. Assistance is also available to people during their job search.