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Workforce and Training

Manufacturing makes up for the biggest part of the region’s workforce, and training the workers of tomorrow has always been a priority. An educated workforce means more motivated employees, lower training costs, shorter training periods, lower start-up costs, fewer accidents, and an excellence to be proud of in productivity and quality—and a variety of programs help match workers with the skills needed for local jobs.

Business owners know that the key to success is finding employees with the right talent, the right skills, and the right work ethic. That’s why job training is such a key element in building a successful workforce—especially considering the high costs of employee turnover.

Here in Greater Fort Dodge, businesses have a key resource in the Iowa New Jobs Training Program, which was developed to provide funding for a wide variety of training and employee development programs. The assistance ranges from highly specialized educational programs to basic skill training for new positions.

Additional advantages include:
• Iowa is a right-to-work state
• Employment relationships are “at-will”—an employer may terminate an employment relationship at any time, with or without cause
• In the advanced manufacturing sector, Iowan’s tend to stay in one job, on average, at least 15+ years.
• Iowa has the second lowest turnover rate in the nation

Job Training Programs

The Iowa New Jobs Training Program (also known as the 260E program) reimburses companies for up to 50 percent of new employee wages and benefits during their training.

Administered through Iowa Central Community College, the program is funded by diverting 1.5 percent or 3.0 percent of a new employee’s payroll for up to 10 years—money that would otherwise be withheld for the employee’s state income taxes. The job training funds can be used for things such as training materials, equipment, skill assessments, travel expenses, or contractor services.