PROVIDENCE, R.I. Earlier this summer, Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo announced an ambitious 'Back to Work RI' initiative to kickstart Rhode Island's recovery from the COVID-induced economic downturn. Today, she announced a new collaboration between Jobcase and the state's Department of Labor and Training (DLT) to help inform Rhode Island jobseekers about opportunities available through Back to Work RI.
"Many of those hardest hit during COVID were already our most vulnerable, and ensuring Rhode Islanders have the tools they need to get back to work is more important now than ever before," said Governor Raimondo. "I'm grateful that Jobcase has stepped up to help connect more Rhode Islanders with resources to get back to work."
The new partnership with Jobcase leverages one of the Internet's largest career services sites and will provide a communications platform to more than 60,000 Rhode Islanders who are seeking work. Jobcase is currently the third largest online destination for career services in the U.S. (as rated by Comscore), with more than 110 million registered members and 20 million unique users per month. As a community of "people helping people," Jobcase provides critical support to America's workers to help them face unprecedented challenges.
Specifically in Rhode Island, Jobcase has developed a forum exclusively for Ocean State jobseekers and is partnering with DLT to use the Jobcase platform to inform Rhode Islanders about Back to Work training and job opportunities. The Rhode Island collaboration builds on Jobcase's national work, including establishing an Unemployment Resource Center, serving thousands of workers around the country who are navigating the unemployment process during the COVID pandemic.
"The K-shaped recovery, where stock markets are resilient but our workforce continues to struggle, is problematic statistically and felt at kitchen tables all around the country. Governor Raimondo and Rhode Island are bringing real solutions to the table, and Jobcase is thrilled to help them succeed for workers and employers alike," said Fred Goff, Jobcase cofounder and CEO. "This program is a special and genuine collaborative solution between employers, educators, and the state to provide upskilling, education sponsorships, and job opportunities. Jobcase is proud to be part of it, and this is exactly the type of formula we need to get America moving again at all levels."
"The economy was changing rapidly even before the COVID pandemic, so having the right skills to compete is more important now than ever," said DLT Director Scott Jensen. "This partnership with Jobcase will go a long way to help connect Rhode Islanders with the resources we've made available."
This collaboration was made possible by The Partnership for Rhode Island, a member organization made up of 13 chief executives representing many of the state's largest private employers.
"The Partnership for Rhode Island is uniquely equipped to leverage the assets and resources of the state's largest employers to steer our state toward a swift recovery. We are excited to help make career resources and employment opportunities easier to navigate. Beyond our commitment to hiring thousands of workers through the Back to Work program, our goal was to help soften the arduous processes of career selection, upskilling, job exploration and application," said Tom Giordano, executive director of the Partnership for Rhode Island. "This partnership with Jobcase will allow Rhode Islanders to more efficiently and effectively find the support they need to succeed in these challenging times and build towards a promising career. Special thanks to the teams at Jobcase and Providence Equity who made this possible."
Over 200,000 Rhode Islanders have filed for unemployment since the COVID-19 outbreak first shut down the state's economy, and the state unemployment rate climbed as high as 18 percent in April. Since then, 49,500 jobs have been recovered and the unemployment rate has fallen to 11.2 percent which is still as high as Great Recession levels. The Back to Work RI initiative aims to create at least 5,000 new jobs in targeted industries and connect unemployed and underemployed Rhode Islanders with necessary training to compete for the jobs that will be created during the COVID recovery.
The Back to Work RI Jobcase group is available for Rhode Islanders to join here.