Digital Works Training and Work Environment from Connected Nation on Vimeo.
Much of the success behind the Digital Works program can be attributed to the training and work environment. A component of this comes from each Digital Works location having a facilitator on staff to serve as a mentor to the participants and help guide them through the training process.
“She (the facilitator) can always show me something if I have a question,” said Ashley Marshall, Digital Works trainee in Zanesville. “If I was home by myself I don’t have anyone to talk to about it and no help from anybody, so she helps out a lot.”
Many twenty-first century jobs are available through broadband technology; however, it can be a big leap for a lot of people to transition to these jobs. The Digital Works training curriculum gives participants the skills needed to secure this type of position. The facilitator is there to help get them through all of the bumps of getting into the workforce.
The participants are able to learn alongside others in a similar situation, creating camaraderie among participants as they complete the training program. Many find comfort in knowing other people are going through the same struggles and they’re not alone in searching for employment.
“We present a training program that supports them all the way through,” said Teresa Felton, facilitator at Digital Works Zanesville. “They interact with each other, they know that they’re all going through the same things.”
After securing employment, participants are required to work from the Digital Works facility for 30 hours, serving as a trail training period. This time allows for the participant to become comfortable in their new positions before being able to transition to work remotely. Training sessions often coincide with Digital Works graduates working onsite, building enthusiasm for Digital Works participants.
“Typically we have found that when we have people working and training in the same atmosphere, it instills a lot of confidence in the training candidates,” said Michael Dumont, Connected Nation national employer relations manager.