THOUSAND OAKS, Calif., May 15, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- The Business Information Worker (BIW) structured pathway is an innovative, statewide, solution to employment for thousands of Californians of all ages offered through the California Community Colleges. Designed with faculty and business involvement the short-term branded pathway prepares students for entry-level middle-skill office jobs in six months or less.
The pathway represents a set of digital and soft skills in demand by businesses throughout the state based upon interviews with placement agencies and cross-referenced with advisory groups and other labor market information. BIW incorporates Keyboarding, Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, Outlook) Information Systems, Business Communications and Human Relations/Customer Service.
The BIW is advantageous to businesses in that they have a known skill set detailed and communicated consistently across the state. The BIW is an advantage to students who need employment sooner rather than later, giving them a clear and definitive pathway that leads to an entry-level job. Students can return for advanced credentials and pathways as their income permits.
Reported as a fundamental finding in The Digital Skills Gap In The Workforce, funded by Capital One and produced by Burning Glass Technologies:
"Much of the debate over technology in the workforce has focused on sophisticated skills, such as writing code. But the more significant impact on the middle-skill job market is in the humbler world of everyday software: spreadsheets and word processing, programs for medical billing and running computerized drill presses. To a large extent, a job seeker without the ability to use this software won't even get in the door." (Crunched by the Numbers: The Digital Skills Gap in the Workforce)
"While a four-year degree is still an HR standard in most companies, we have searched for the entry level pathways that allow our students to get a job, gain experience and then further their education," said Statewide ICT/DM Sector Navigator, Steve Wright.
The BIW pathway is now available at 25% of CA Community Colleges statewide and can be found on the BIW website( ict-dm.net./biw) To participate, colleges identify the locally named existing courses on their campus schedules that match the master BIW pathway courses. This enables students and counselors to identify the BIW pathway on their campus. Students can complete the on-line resume builder for a BIW resume as they complete the courses.
BIW is the first and easiest in a series of effective job readiness pathways that are being introduced by the Doing What Matters, Information Communications Technology (ICT)-Digital Media Sector Team and the Small Business Sector Team. The innovative design to align differently named courses statewide in a consistent and regionally coordinated manner is key to rapid roll out in the branded pathway approach. Criteria for entry-level branded pathways include at least 20,000 jobs available state-wide, an expectation that 80-90% of completers can get the job and that training is less than a year - preferably 6 months.
Additional branded pathways to be introduced by the ICT-Digital Media Team this year include: Computer Retail Specialist, User Support Help Desk (Computer/Network) and IT Technician that also support and match third party IT certification acquisition with industry demand.
PO Box 1064, Thousand Oaks, CA, 91358, Desk: 805-496-8583, Cell: 805-231-8444
CONTACT: Steve Wright, Director & Sector Navigator
Information Communications Technologies (ICT) and Digital Media Sector Team
Doing What Matters for Jobs and the Economy, California Community Colleges
Desk: 805-496-8583, Cell: 805-231-8444
SOURCE Business Information Worker