The Richland Area Chamber & Economic Development has partnered with the Area 10 Workforce Development Board and Destination Mansfield to broadcast the story of the region’s economic and workforce landscape. Mansfield and its surrounding communities have a rich history of manufacturing, a rapidly growing healthcare industry, and now-a future in cybersecurity and technology-based industries. Through a collaboration of funds and assets- the county is working to effectively tell these stories with a workforce-focused podcast, and a series of videos that showcase employers in the county.
The first episode of the Workforce Pulse Podcast launched on April 25th. Director of Workforce Development, Clint Knight, talked with Lt. Governor Jon Husted about the ups and downs of labor participation and unemployment throughout the pandemic, the trends post-pandemic, and funding opportunities for upskilling in Ohio. This initial episode set the stage for a 7-episode season that is educational about workforce resources, strategies, and detailed case studies that show how the regional workforce system is working to meet the needs of both current, and potential employers.
The podcast is structured so that episodes can be isolated as a resource for businesses looking to relocate to the area. If a visiting company asks, “What, specifically, are you doing to address the workforce needs in the region?”, the economic development team can point to Episode 3 with Dr. Dorey Diab from North Central State College. In this episode, Dr. Diab describes how North Central and OSU Mansfield responded to regional employer needs by developing customized short-term certificate and 2-year Polymer Engineering programs.
“We have an amazing story to tell here. This is an effort to showcase who we are, and how we work together,” says Knight. “We’re utilizing the convenience and popularity of the podcast platform to make it easy for people to hear that story – wherever they are, and whenever they can.”
Alongside the podcast effort, regional partners are creating a 25-episode “Employer-Profile Video” series. These are 3-minute videos that tell a specific employer’s story. This effort is also funded through regional workforce partnerships – at no cost to the employers. Some videos are a company overview that follows the process of manufacturing a product, while others tell the story of an employee’s development. The Workforce and Economic Development team identifies the companies to be featured, then plays matchmaker between a contracted production company and the featured employer.
Richland Area Chamber Director of Economic Development Barrett Thomas says, “These videos are also extremely useful for business attraction. You’re hearing from the local business leaders about their specific successes in this community. That makes a difference when someone is looking to invest here.”
The videos are also backed by a social media campaign that targets local talent, outside talent, and future talent. For example, if 3 of the participating companies let us know that they will be looking to add Business Data Analysts in the future – the campaign can be geo-fenced around educational institutions that have a high rate of success in that area of study.
Workforce Pulse Podcast:
For more information reach out to Clint Knight at email@example.com