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“Customize Your Hiring” #SFSBW2016 Interview: Office of Economic and Workforce Development

#SFSBW2016 asked our business resources to share insights, best practices, and examples of how they help small business owners flourish. Today we hear from Office of Economic and Workforce Development (OEWD).

What is your organization’s mission?
The Office of Economic and Workforce Development’s (OEWD) mission is simple – we support the ongoing economic vitality of San Francisco. Under the direction of Mayor Edwin M. Lee, OEWD provides city-wide leadership for workforce development, business attraction and retention, neighborhood commercial revitalization, international business and development planning.

What are your organizations recent accomplishments that demonstrate how you have helped the small business community?
OEWD coordinates the San Francisco Workforce Development System, which strives to ensure that San Francisco has a qualified workforce that attracts, retains and expands industries, and enhances the quality of life in the City.

Recent examples of how we support our local small business community include connecting and referring individuals that need jobs with openings at Duc Loi Supermarket and The Market on Market. Some of the individuals that were referred and ultimately hired graduated from City sponsored training programs. OEWD also assisted Rolling Stock with workforce assistance when their facility caught fire.

What tools and resources has your organization created to help small businesses tap into new opportunities to reach new customers, increase their revenue, and grow their businesses?
The Office of Economic and Workforce Development provides no cost staffing services that include pre-screened and qualified individuals who are ready to work for employers and companies looking to hire.

Our office can work with employers to find job candidates who are eligible for 50% salary reimbursement when training is provided on the job (up to $6,000). Also, in the event of a layoff, free outplacement services can be provided through our Rapid Response and Job Transition Assistance Services. These programs help employees who have lost their jobs quickly connect to Unemployment Insurance, job counseling, training opportunities and job placement assistance.

What words of advice or wisdom would you like to share with small business owners?
When looking to hire, employers can save time and money by using OEWD’s no cost staffing services program. These services provide job distribution, customized hiring fairs, pre-screening of candidates, and scheduling interviews that support the hiring needs of employers.

Hear how a local small business used Office of Economic and Workforce Development to help their business.5.24 OEWD RR Adam FullSizeRender (004)
A few months ago, a devastating fire engulfed Rolling Stock, a tire and auto repair shop, located in the Mission district.  Upon learning about the fire, the Office of Economic and Workforce Development’s Business Services Unit immediately connected with the owner to assess the impact of the fire to its workforce and provide assistance based on their needs.

The OEWD team was able to package a myriad of services and resources designed to help the company stay in business and assist their employees as they transitioned to a new location. More than 18 employees were affected by the fire and through our assistance, they were able to obtain important information in Spanish and English languages including:

  • Unemployment Insurance Benefits
  • Health Care Options
  • Employment Assistance
  • Training Opportunities
  • Career Counseling
  • Resume Assistance
  • Access to computers, printers, copiers and internet connectivity at no-cost
  • Health Care Options

All the affected employees were given the resources and information they needed to make quick decisions about applying for unemployment, seeking out new jobs and access to several skills training programs.