Kiosk Newsbit

Idaho Job Service offices transformed into high-technology career centers
(Idaho Business Review; 08/31/98)

The 24 Idaho Job Service offices have been transformed into high- technology 
 Idaho Works Career Centers to enhance support of the state's labor market.

    Gov. Phil Batt, Lt. Gov. Butch Otter and Idaho Workforce Development Council 
 officials have scheduled a Sept. 2 news conference on the new configuration.

    Idaho Works Career Centers provide self-service work registration and 
 Internet access to thousands of job openings in Idaho and the U.S., along with 
 a wide array of labor market information, education and training opportunities, 
 according to information provided by the Idaho Department of Labor. The system 
 streamlines the process of matching employees with employers.

    A total of 418 computer stations are available to customers at the 24 Career 
 Centers in Idaho. By March, another 156 stations will be operating in the 
 lobbies of other partnering government agencies and community-based 
 organizations and remote kiosk sites.

    Job Service offices have been renovated and expanded to accommodate the self-
 service computers and related work force services. Staff levels at the offices 
 have not changed, though office efficiency has improved because staff members 
 are meeting job seekers at the computer stations rather than the job seekers 
 forming lines at staff work stations, officials said. Many employees have taken 
 career development facilitator certification training.

    Funding is from U.S. Department of Labor grants. The project is halfway 
 through a three-year, $5.4 million grant period, after which existing federal 
 and state operating funds will be used to continue these services. The centers 
 are approximately 95 percent federally funded, Idaho Department of Labor 
 officials said.

    Career Centers are part of a national one-stop system connecting employment 
 education and training services into a cohesive network of resources at the 
 local and state level, Idaho Department of Labor officials said.

    This information can be accessed at the touch-screen computers at Career 
 Centers and partner organizations, or on home computers via the Internet at 
 www.idahoworks, This Internet website includes links to numerous 
 other related sites concerning available jobs, job markets, labor force 
 statistics and the economy.

    Each of the state's Career Centers has computer software, printers and fax 
 machines for creating and sending resumes and cover letters. Centers also have 
 on-site representatives to help with unemployment insurance, and to assist the 
 various classifications of employees in obtaining jobs or training.

    For employers, services for employers include easy job listing procedures 
 (including Internet listing), recruitment and matching of qualified applicants, 
 useful labor market information, layoff assistance and various business 

    Career Centers are a major initiative of the Governor's Workforce 
 Development Council, which includes a cross-section of individuals throughout 
 the state. The Council advises Gov. Batt on overall strategy for integrating 
 employment and training programs and coordinating and improving work force 
 services for employers, job seekers and students.

    These policies are implemented through the combined efforts of state and 
 partner agencies employers, community-based organizations, higher education and 
 public schools.

    "A quality work force in Idaho is a critical component in assuring a 
 healthy, strong economy," Batt said in a prepared statement. "Having a highly 
 trained and motivated work force is essential in creating good, high-paying 

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