Stephens County was proclaimed a Georgia Certified Work Ready Community in November 2009. Certified Work Ready Communities have the skilled workforce that business demands and the educational infrastructure to drive economic growth and prosperity.
To earn the designation, counties must:
- Demonstrate a commitment to improving public high school graduation rates through a measurable increase
- Show a specified percentage of the available and current workforce have earned Work Ready Certificates
Earning Certified Work Ready Community status ensures our residents have the talent necessary to staff existing jobs and to master the innovative technologies new jobs will require in the future. By taking part in the effort, Stephens and other Georgia counties are transforming their economies and giving themselves a competitive advantage in attracting new businesses and jobs.
To be designated a Certified Work Ready Community, counties must drive current workers and the available workforce to earn Work Ready Certificates, demonstrate a commitment to improving public high school graduation rates and build community commitment for meeting these goals.
Each community has created a team of economic development, government and education partners to meet the certification criteria. Counties are given three years to reach the goals necessary to become a Certified Work Ready Community. Those counties willing to complete the process in 18 months are eligible for state-funded grants and serve as models for the initiative, showcasing successes and best practices for others to follow.
Benefits of Work Ready
Georgia Work Ready can help you hire the best people and boost your bottom line. It's available at no cost for companies meeting minimum hiring requirements and is easy to access through the state's network of technical colleges. Georgia companies can implement Work Ready two ways - through job profiling and Work Ready Certificates. Work Ready job profiles identify the job tasks and skill levels necessary to be successful in any job. Companies match those profiles to employees' Work Ready Certificates - which measure core skills - to ensure the right person is placed in the right job every time.
Companies implementing Work Ready make an investment of their employees' time to develop strong job profiles. This initial investment can reap great rewards for years to come including:
- Improved hiring procedures
- Reduced turnover
- Reduced training costs
- Increased productivity and profitability
- High employee morale
In fact, a recent survey among companies that are using Work Ready found that 90 percent would recommend the initiative to others and 78 percent said that Work Ready helps them "find higher quality employees."