Creating a Workforce Development Ecosystem
Prince George's County Memorial Library System
During the pandemic, PGCMLS formed a workforce team to bridge employability gaps focused on the digital divide by providing innovative virtual programming, training and community partnerships. We developed a microsite and business wiki to improve equitable access to resources for all customers, including those transitioning into entrepreneurship.
COVID-19 shifted workforces to a remote platform causing many to adjust to the digital demands of the workforce abruptly. PGCMLS did not have a dedicated location for workforce resources (programs, resources, partnerships) for our customers to bridge any digital inequities that inhibit them from competing in a digital workforce. Changes in the workforce also caused people to reevaluate how they earn money. PGCMLS also did not have a digital resource to help aspiring entrepreneurs build their businesses effectively.
Key Elements of Innovation
PGCMLS' two web-based resources (workforce-dedicated microsite and small business wiki) promote visibility and collation of information, providing a virtual one-stop shop for jobseekers and entrepreneurs. The team created a dedicated workforce microsite where customers can locate hiring websites, programs, training, materials and resources. PGCMLS co-designed a small business wiki with the University of Maryland focused on assisting aspiring business owners with the various stages of business development; the wiki launches in early 2022.
PGCMLS' workforce ecosystem reached over 2,000 customers in the last six months connecting them to resources and events. Our business wiki will curate resources during the early stages of a patron's business plan. Over 300 attended our IC3 digital literacy certificate course increasing their ability to navigate the digital world. Customers view PGCMLS as problem solvers, using creative methods to overcome challenges. A patron wrote, "IC3 is available at no cost to the student. I feel so much more confident about pursuing an IT career."
Learn more about this initiative from a WJLA article, "Pockets Change and Managing Your Money at a Young Age."