Training & Employment

When it comes to training, we’re investing in courses that lead to nationally recognized industry credentials such as NIMS, AWS, and the MSSC/CPT.  The second biggest concern of regional manufacturers is that the available labor does not have the skills needed for current and projected jobs.  It’s time consuming and difficult for companies to pick out the qualified applicants.  There’s a need for consistent expectations and objective ways to validate candidate skills.Our Manufacturing Industry Panel has adopted the Advanced Manufacturing Competency Model and the NAM-endorsed Skills Certification System as the framework for driving skill development.  This system relies on industry certifications as an objective way to validate worker skills and to assist employers in finding the right candidates more effectively.

Addressing the manufacturing skills gap is going to take leadership from manufacturers themselves.  Take the Manufacturer’s Pledge and join the growing list of Oregon and Washington companies committed to taking action by demanding a certified workforce.

Competency Model-Manufacturing Pathways

Skills Certification Image

Hire PLUS!

Manufacturing’s link to the worker supply chain

To produce a certified workforce, the Collaborative and the Manufacturing 21 Coalition have formed an alliance to train Manufacturing Production Technicians fully certified by the Manufacturing Skills Standards Council (MSSC).  The nationwide MSSC system offers both entry-level and current workers the opportunity to earn credentials that demonstrate they have mastered the skills increasingly needed in the high-growth, technology-intensive jobs of the manufacturing sector.  Our goal is to help local manufacturers grow and thrive by improving the quality of the regional manufacturing workforce.

Community colleges across the region will provide instruction focused on the same industry standards and performance benchmarks. Our recruits will receive instruction and be certified work ready in the following areas:

1. Manufacturing Processes & Production          3. Safety

2. Quality Practices & Measurement                   4. Maintenance Awareness

The Timeline

Our first class of certified work ready people will be available for hire in early August with two more classes completing in mid-September 2014.


We ask participating companies to interview from our pool of Certified Production Technicians when they have open positions. When hired, training professionals will work with the employer to determine what “next step” skills are necessary to immediately increase the value of the new hire.  We will offer additional resources to address company-specific training required to succeed on the job and jumpstart the recruit’s manufacturing career.  Resources include training cost reimbursements for new hires through our On –The-Job-Training (OJT) program and current mid to high skilled workers through our Employee Training Assistance Fund.

Contact to connect to Certified Production Technician graduates.

Regional Manufacturing
Recruitment Pool

We’ve worked with manufacturers to define what it means to be “work ready” and are building a regional hiring pool of over 2000 candidates pre-screened to regional skills standards and competencies The process uses a more rigorous method of skill validation and soft skills assessment to identify qualified candidates.  This will allow for quicker onboarding of new hires and improved retention of employees.

We’re working to direct employment-ready candidates from area high schools, community colleges, and community organizations to this regional hiring pool.  By connecting these feeder systems we will create a broader base of talent that can be centrally managed.

To hire your next employee from the Regional Manufacturing Pool click on the Recruitment Support document to connect to your local manufacturing recruiter.

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