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Posts By Richard Maher

Kicking Off Statewide Sectors Initiative for Missouri

Jefferson City, MO: The Maher & Maher Team is working with leaders from Missouri’s workforce, economic development and educational systems to launch an initiative to deploy sector-based strategies throughout the state.

More than 35 executives from workforce, economic development and education joined business leaders in Jefferson City last week to review and endorse key project objectives, timelines and deliverables, and to prepare for a statewide Sectors Summit to kick-off implementation plans that will guide the critical deployment of this initiative.

“‘Sector Strategies’ is a key tenant in the Nation’s new Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), and, as such, will give Missouri’s state and local systems an important leg up on preparing for implementation of the new law,” said Richard D. Maher, the Firm’s President & CEO. “However, and to us more importantly,… Read more →

Speaking with One Voice: Using Consensus-Based Decision Making to Identify Target Industries

In an earlier article this month, we defined Sector Strategies and noted that they are “industry specific.” Though we did not go into the importance of this at the time, deciding on the industries that a region should focus on is a critical and foundational requirement to developing Sector Strategies. This is no easy task, as all stakeholders in this process have to be in agreement and willing to invest time and resources to further these industries. Here’s what it looks like when everyone is in agreement:

Employers in these industries are participating in conversations – ideally, within a structured Industry Partnership -- about their workforce and training needs. The local Workforce Investment Board is funding training and allocating resources targeted at occupations in these industries. The workforce system, educators, and employers are creating career pathways to build and sustain a talent pipeline for… Read more →

Maher & Maher Goes to SETA 2015 in Savannah

Savannah, GA.: The Maher Team had a busy week at SETA’s 2015 Conference in Savannah, Georgia in late September. A group of our consulting staff from our Federal Workforce Solutions Practice delivered a series of professional development workshops intended to help folks improve System performance and better prepare for the looming implementation of the Nation’s Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA).

Led by Rick Maher, the Firm’s President and CEO, members of the Maher Team descended on Savannah with a purpose – to help engage attendees in a positive and engaging discussion of the new Act and how to best prepare for System change.

“I was proud of our Team. They were everywhere – running workshops, staging video shoots for training products and attending sessions themselves,” said Maher. “When we stop learning ourselves, we cannot be as… Read more →

Maher & Maher Goes to the White House!

Washington, D.C.: The Maher Team recently visited the White House in support of our clients at ApprenticeshipUSA.

The recent White House Summit on ApprenticeshipUSA was a capstone event following this Summer’s launch of the Sectors of Excellence in Apprenticeship (SEA) initiative. Part of President Obama’s call to double the number of the Nation’s apprentices by 2020, SEA brought together leaders from six key industry sectors – Construction, Information Technology, Advanced Manufacturing, Energy, Healthcare and Logistics/Transportation – in regional meetings around the U.S. These SEA events saw industry leaders and leaders from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Apprenticeship come together, brainstorm actions and make commitments to advance the application of apprenticeship in meeting the Nation’s talent needs today and tomorrow.

“The SEA events were great,” said Amy Young, Maher… Read more →

Webinar Recap: Making Sector Strategies Real

On September 10, 2015, Maher & Maher hosted a webinar designed to help state workforce development agencies leverage their Sector Partnership National Emergency Grant award to achieve their talent development goals. We covered topics including the vision for industry sector-focused talent pipeline development, characteristics of high-performing sector strategies, critical success factors, and the planning process for creating, implementing and sustaining sector-based regional planning. One of the main reasons for creating this webinar is to provide an overview of information helpful to grantees as they engage in planning to create or enhance sector partnerships.

When tied closely to the passage of WIOA and the adoption of sector strategies, regional workforce planning, integrated service delivery, and enhanced use of data to drive planning and service delivery, the SP NEG program offers an opportunity to enhance alignment among workforce development, economic development and educational goals and strategies.

Aligning public partners… Read more →

What it looks like when done well: Sector Strategies at the Service Delivery Level

In many parts of the country, local Boards and their partners have integrated an industry sector focus as a key driver of their partnership development work, their strategic planning and policy efforts, and their structure for business service delivery. Integrating a sector focus as a key driver of service delivery for job seekers and workers, however, is less common. Applying sector strategies to career center service planning and delivery for these customers transforms the service experience and has been shown to improve outcomes for job seekers, workers, and business alike. Absent this focus, services for job seekers and workers may not be tied to career opportunities and career pathways in target industry sectors.

What would a sector-focused service delivery experience look and “feel” like to a job seeker or worker customer? When done right, career center organization, partnerships, customer flow, and service planning and delivery… Read more →

Welcome to WIOA: Easy Intro to Sector Strategies, Sector Partnerships, and Career Pathways

In today’s economy, making sure that the skills of the available workforce meet the needs of local industry is crucial. By developing career pathways for workers that are aligned with the needs of industry, people can become and remain employed, industry grows, and the overall regional and national economies benefit.

That’s where Sector Planning comes in, and it all starts with focused, active partnerships between businesses and those engaged in workforce development. These “Sector Partnerships” are defined as:

“Focused, active partnerships among businesses in a target industry sector and workforce development organizations, educators, training providers, labor unions, community organizations, and other key stakeholders”

Working together, these collaborations identify industry needs for workers with specific skills, education, and credentials, and then make sure that educational and training opportunities are available to help people… Read more →

Arkansas Gets WIOA Quick-Start: Statewide Conference Offers On-Ramp to WIOA Success

In this article from our blog, Maher & Maher President & CEO Richard D. Maher shares some of the highlights from our facilitation of Arkansas’ first WIOA statewide planning meeting. Learn more about how this state plans to “dive in” to the serious business of implementing the new law, along with some best practices that may work for your state as well.



New State Projects for Maher & Maher!

The passage of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) was a tremendous step forward in reforming our country’s workforce development system. Many states are leveraging the new law to transform their own systems and, as a result, have sought our assistance in their change efforts.  We are pleased to announce four upcoming projects in South Carolina, Kentucky, Illinois, and Missouri.

The projects will leverage sector strategies as the framework for building a talent development system and for delivering services to businesses and individuals in One-Stop Career Centers. They all involve significant planning at the sub-state regional level, as is warranted for such an impactful policy and program initiative. However, three of these projects have the advantage of combining mandated WIOA regional planning with developing sector strategies, a primary policy initiative under the new law.

Each project is customized for the unique… Read more →

New Leadership for Our State and Regional Practice at Maher & Maher

Our team at Maher & Maher has helped many organizations successfully manage and thrive in the midst of change. We know that every organization has moments of transition, including us! Today we announce a change to the leadership in Maher & Maher’s State and Regional Workforce Solutions practice. Over the past fifteen years, many of our clients have worked with Arnie Richter, outgoing Director of that practice, on State and Regional projects and on Federal Practice projects. Arnie has been there almost from the beginning of our Federal Practice, helping to build a strong foundation before moving on to focus on state and regional work. After a number of years of sharing his passion and energy with our clients on a full-time basis, Arnie has decided that the time has come to reduce his hours while still contributing to the work he loves. He will be continuing… Read more →