Crestron Electronics, Inc. provides hardware and software used to control audio and video systems, as well as computer networks, security systems, and environmental systems, such as temperature and lighting. Crestron markets to businesses, consumers, government agencies, and schools. The company’s commercial customers include airports, hotels and casinos, museums, restaurants, and retailers. Established in 1971 and headquartered in Rockleigh, New Jerey, the company now has more than 50 offices worldwide.
The company needed a cost-effective recruitment and training solution—one that would provide a good return on investment. Because Crestron had successfully used Bergen County’s workforce development programs in the past, they hoped the public workforce system could again provide a solution.
The WorkFirst New Jersey On-the-Job Training (OJT) program was the answer. All WorkFirst New Jersey participants are receiving public assistance, such as Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, General Assistance, or non-public assistance Food Stamps. To find eligible candidates, Crestron collaborated with workforce professionals at the Bergen County Workforce Development Board (Bergen WDB) and the Business Resource Center (BRC) at the One-Stop Career Center. First, employment specialists pre-screened applicants who attended a recruitment event; only the most qualified applicants were referred to the employer. The employment specialist and the WDB Director served as liaisons to introduce each OJT candidate and ensure a successful outcome. Crestron interviewed the candidates and made the final hiring decisions.
OJT Contracts: Three OJT contracts were awarded through the Essex County National Emergency Grant (NEG)-OJT program, and two contracts were awarded through the collaboration of the Work-First OJT coordinator in Bergen County. Each contract outlined the on-the-job training requirements for a specific position and the employer’s training reimbursement. As of this date, all of these employees are still working at Crestron.
Return on Investment: Crestron is eligible to receive up to half of the new employees’ gross wages for up to 26 weeks to help defray the costs of their training. Funding is provided by the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development.
Social Responsibility: The OJT contracts created opportunities for economically disadvantaged New Jersey citizens. Continuation of these OJT programs and, more importantly, future success for the trainees will depend on the active engagement of more socially responsible businesses.
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