We hear a consistent objective at the federal, state and local level regarding what our economy needs to recover. Jobs. A shared objective does nothing on its own without every organization understanding its role and responsibility.
The board of Suncoast Workforce is made up of leaders from all sectors who know a shared objective requires decisive action. As a result, our team of professionals is challenged daily to prove we are focused on the right actions and producing the best possible results.
Suncoast Workforce’s role in our region’s jobs agenda includes two things. One is our responsibility to provide career centers where job seekers can tap into the right resources to connect to real life employment opportunities. Time is precious for each job seeker so every action should be tailored towards employment. A second role is to connect job seekers and career builders to the training and skills development that draw the attention of human resource professionals and staffing officers. We help our neighbors in Sarasota and Manatee make the best case for their own employment value. And we measure ourselves to that end every day.
I want to share perspectives on what we need to do and learn to ensure job growth and the economic diversification required to create and keep jobs. I begin with an axiom: No one stands apart from the system that creates employment and prepares talent for the future. If you feel disconnected or out-of-the-loop, let me help.
For the large employer, the entrepreneur, and the small business owner -- do not let a day go by without asking yourself, “Have I provided Suncoast Workforce consultants with the employment information and future trends required to connect great talent to my success?” Consider it in the best interest of your business’s competitiveness or consider it economic stewardship to the place you call “home” or both.
For our private sector leaders and elected officials, have you considered our two-county role and opportunities in the Tampa Bay region and Florida? Many of our resident employers and signature companies serve larger markets, have complex supply chains, and deal with talent who reside across a vast area. Our board is committed to understanding this complex world but we cannot do it alone.
On a personal level, I am confronted every day with the need to learn and work through reams of vast data to ensure we take the right steps. So, I ask leaders to join me in cutting through the clutter by following the progress of The Florida Eight. Workforce Florida made this possible through the placement of resources at the regional level to build our community’s capacity, and see the innovations and problem solving in other Florida regions.
As a member of the regional business team for this project, I congratulate the eight-county Tampa Bay Partnership for merging its workforce and talent efforts with The Florida Eight. Through this initiative, and without leaving my post in a career center, I can follow the red-tape-cutting “open for business” efforts in Central Florida, the connections of target industry studies to local business retention and growth in Northeast Florida, and the asset assessment for resident employers in rural South Central. For this new “line of sight,” I am grateful to the Workforce Florida board.
Join me in honoring this investment in what is regional and local by staying connected to the Florida Eight through www.floridaeight.com.
Help our professional team serve as many job seekers as possible. We are equipped to help in all occupational and professional fields, and skill sets. Employers share job opportunities with Suncoast Workforce from entry level to senior officer, from trainee to technician. Career centers are for jobs and careers, not for some jobs and some careers.
Our board and professional staff know they are only as good as the information we receive. For me, it means I must encourage employers to share, understand the complex companies that chose to do business in our two counties, and think and act as a regionalist.
Mary Helen Kress, president and chief executive officer of Suncoast Workforce, a not-for-profit corporation serving Manatee and Sarasota counties, can be reached at 941-358-4080.