Earlier this year, as part of its Empowering Employment initiative, CareerBuilder created a six-month training program to address the question, “Where are all the qualified workers?” From January to June of this year, CareerBuilder provided a free, comprehensive training program for a select group of individuals, in efforts to prepare them for work in the information technology industry (where the demand for skilled workers heavily outweighs the supply).
“Ultimately, we’re hoping to create a model businesses can replicate and use to bridge the skills gap at their own organizations and across the country,” Rosemary Haefner, Vice President of Human Resources at CareerBuilder, said last March, when the project was three-months underway.
Looking back now, Haefner says the company benefited from the program just as much as the interns did. “In the end, the program was not just about teaching new skills to the interns,” she says. “The CareerBuilder employees who acted as mentors learned just as much about themselves – whether it was gaining insight into their own teaching abilities or finding a new appreciation for the tools and training they have at their disposal each and every day.”
Haefner says those who participated also found that, of the three elements that made up the program – classroom training, mentoring with CareerBuilder employees and project work – the hands-on project work had the biggest impact on the interns’ ability to master these skills, which in turn helped build their confidence.
As for that initial goal of creating a business model other companies can replicate, Haefner believes they achieved it, saying:
“I’d encourage other companies to consider adding a similar re-skilling program to their organizations. The interns contributed back at a solid level much earlier in the training than we anticipated. If you’re able to structure your program so that there is significant training in the first month, you’ll recoup your investment quickly.”
CareerBuilder’s leadership is so pleased with the results of the program, Haefner says they are already in the planning stages of “version 2.0”, and recently released the following video about the program. Watch as program participants – both interns and CareerBuilder employees – discuss their success stories.