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For Immediate Release
Contact: Kerry Koonce: (515) 281-9646

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IWD and DMACC To Offer Career Readiness Certificate

DES MOINES – There are a number of workforce challenges facing Iowa, including a shortage of potential employees with specific skill sets. In an effort to address this challenge in Central Iowa, Iowa Workforce Development (IWD) an Des Moines Area Community College (DMACC) are partnering to provide Central Iowa job seekers an opportunity to attain a Career Readiness Certificate (CRC).

The CRC is an ACT WorkKeys® assessment-based credential that gives employers and career seekers a uniform, standard, objective measure of key workplace skills.

“The CRC provides job seekers with a uniformed credential to present to potential employers and Iowa employers know that individuals with the credentials possess the necessary skills to succeed within their organization,” stated Elisabeth Buck, Iowa Workforce Development Director.

With the CRC employers now have a way to assess the skill level of potential and current employees to assure job applicants actually have the basic work skills they seek. The CRC measures three important work-related areas: Applied Mathematics, Reading for Information, and Locating Information. Upon completion of these assessments, the person may qualify for one of three certificates recognizing his or her level of competency:

Bronze level—signifies that a recipient possesses skills for approximately 35 percent of jobs.
Silver level—signifies that a recipient possesses skills for approximately 65 percent of jobs.
Gold level—signifies that a recipient possesses skills for 90 percent of jobs.

Sue Gibbons, DMACC Career Pathways Coordinator, states that for the Career Readiness Certificate to have value to job-seekers, employers must recognize and list the CRC as either a recommended or preferred credential in their job listings.

”This should encourage applicants to work harder to prove that they have skills for success, but the certificates will only be a sheet of paper unless employers value them,” said Gibbons.

Iowa Health—Des Moines is the first organization in Central Iowa to join the CRC Employer Consortium of organizations recognizing the Career Readiness Certificate. As a consortium member Iowa Health—Des Moines will indicate that the Career Readiness Certificate is preferred for job applicants seeking entry- to mid-level positions.

“The CRC will be an additional tool for job seekers to have in their portfolio that will provide evidence to our HR staff of the specific skill levels and competencies they have achieved,” said Sue Allyn, Iowa Health—Des Moines, Vice President for Human Resources. “It is one more assurance that a person is skilled and ready for our workplace. As a member of the Central Iowa Works Healthcare Sector Board, this will be valuable in helping our organization make the best match between skills a person possesses and skills needed to do the job.”

Accumold Corporation, an Ankeny-based manufacturer of precision micro-molded plastic components used in high-tech industries world-wide, has also agreed to incorporate the career readiness certificate concept in their hiring procedures.

For more information on the CRC program in the Greater Des Moines area, contact Mike Wilkinson with Iowa Workforce Development at (515) 281-9725 or Sue Gibbons with Des Moines Area Community College at (515) 697-7736.

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