March 2014 • Boston, MA
The Celebrating GreenWays conference served as both a celebration and a planning session as we near the conclusion of the Green Jobs Innovation Fund grant. During the conference, participants worked together to develop strategies for sustaining and building upon the work of the past three years of providing access to quality green jobs for low-income individuals.
Working sessions and presenations drew on the experiences of GJIF grantees as well as of national leaders and experts, strengthening relationships within the network.
Selected Presentations and Resources
The opening kickoff highlighed the results to date of the GreenWays initiative.
Each site showcased their accomplishments and partnerships, reflected on lessons learned and presented their plans for sustainability. The presentations can be found here:
Video presentations from Philadelphia's Solar Career Move and Chicago's Calmut Green Manufacturing Partnership:
The Federal Workforce Development Policy Funding Update provided conference participants with an overview of opportunities that lie ahead with federal workforce policy.
The Detroit Free Press recently featured two articles promoting the economic benefits of deconstruction, including one penned by Mary Freeman of Southwest Economic Solutions. These articles provide a voice of advocacy for this emerging industry and serves as a significant job creator within the city of Detroit.
Sustaining Employer Relationships for Lasting Committment. Workforce partnerships engaged employers by preparing workers with skills in demand in the local economy. Now that training funds are phasing out, workforce partners need to look for a new way to stay connected to employers within the industry sector. In this session, participants discussed strategies including the development of active Advisory Committees, developing relationships with program alumni who develop new businesses, and the potential of paid internship programs as an entry point for prospective business relationships.
Partnership Maintenance: Where Do We Go From Here. GreenWays has been successful in nurturing strong relationships among community based service providers, community colleges, apprenticeship programs, and employers. During this session participants discussed strategies to continue leveraging these relationships as relationship management funds run out.
Assessing the Feasibility of Fee-for-Service. This session centered on the elements programs need to consider when assessing the fee-for-service model as a funding strategy including alignment with program culture, strategies to hold clients accountable for program results, and investing time and money in preparation, execution, reflection and learning.
Marketing Your Project's Success. Effectively communicating project outcomes and the benefits to target audiences are vital for success. Access the session presentation.
Talking to Stakeholders About Return on Investment. This session centered on strategies for articulating the return on investment for stakeholders such as employers, program participants, and funders who invest in site programs and partnerships. Participants discussed the key steps in measuring business impact including identifying the right indicators and collecting the appropriate data. Examples of ROI include:
- Measuring return on investment to the individual jobseeker or participant.
- Measuring return on investment to society.
- The Commonwealth Corporation developed a practitioner's guide to measuring business impact of workforce investments.
Women in Nontraditional Occupations. A concurrent session and presentation highlighted GreenWays impact in sustaining and growing women's participation in nontraditional occupations. Participants tackled the question of how to continue successful strategies for adopting policies and strategies that promote women's economic equity with the public workforce system. Access the session presentation.
The conference concluded with a group discussion sessions that provided an opportunity for program participants to share information, ask questions of each other and discuss ways to move the work forward. Topics included:
- Future of the Green Economy in Workforce
- Accessing Department of Transportation Resources
- Strengthening Sectoral Intermediaries
- Linking Economic and Workforce Development