February 25, 2024
CT takes a leap forward with a new website to foster workforce growth

Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont unveiled the state’s new jobs portal, jobs.ct.gov, at the Connecticut Business and Industry Association economic summit. The online tool is tailored to aid job seekers, whether current residents or prospective movers, to simplify the job search process.

The newly launched portal also equips employers with valuable insights to connect with a more extensive pool of skilled candidates from diverse backgrounds, Lamont said.

“Workforce is probably one of the biggest issues, and we’re going to continue to double down in terms of making sure you have the trained workforce you need,” he told business leaders Thursday morning. “We’ve got some federal money as well … and if you are still having a hard time hiring as it was a year ago, anything I can do to lift people up is absolutely invaluable.”

In his address at the CBIA, Lamont also covered Connecticut’s economic status and key goals, emphasizing economic stability and fiscal responsibility, praising bipartisan collaboration with the legislature, and underscoring the significance of fiscal guardrails. Despite acknowledging budgetary constraints discussed in the 2023 legislative session, he stressed the commitment to fiscal responsibility.

Pratt and Whitney President Shane Eddy emphasized the importance of the IT industry, from grade school to higher education. Eddy highlighted ongoing discussions about the company’s connections with community colleges and universities as part of their effort to find job talent.

“It’s a little bit easier sometimes for Pratt and Whitney when we go looking for the roles we’re trying to fill. Making sure that we all understand that — where are there gaps and what programs are we putting in?” Eddy said.

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Policy discussions and collaborations with state agencies and nonprofits were also highlighted at the summit, covering areas such as housing, child care, immigration, health care costs, and insurance. Initiatives like the Workforce Summit aim to tackle the crisis that Connecticut’s estimated 44,000 disconnected or off-track high school graduates face.

CBIA President and CEO Chris DiPentima shed light on the promising outlook for 2024 while acknowledging specific challenges. DiPentima acknowledged the persistent challenge of addressing the labor shortage, emphasizing the need for improved career pathways for various groups, including women, immigrants, returning citizens, veterans and underserved populations.

The summit highlighted a UConn article indicating a positive trend, with 57,000 people migrating to the state in 2022 and an increasing number of college graduates choosing to stay post-graduation.

Scheduled for April 16 in Plantsville, Connecticut, an upcoming summit will specifically concentrate on discovering and developing untapped talent, further contributing to Connecticut’s economic growth.

This story was first published Jan. 18, 2024 by Connecticut Public.