Does your company struggle to recruit and retain entry-level talent?

StepUp is here to help. 

 

StepUp provides free pre-employment screening, training, referral, and support services to jobseekers, including those who struggle with a barrier to the employment process (e.g. a criminal background, a gap in employment history, etc.). Last year, StepUp staff assisted over 520 men and women in obtaining employment in North Carolina. 

 

CONTACT:
Tim Wollin, Employment Program Director
 tim.wollin@stepupministry.org

 

WHO DO WE REFER?

StepUp provides pre-employment training, screening, and referral services to any unemployed or underemployed person in Durham, including those with challenges to employment. These include:

  • Justice-involved individuals/returning citizens
  • Domestic violence survivors
  • Veterans 
  • Refugees
  • People with gaps in employment history
  • People laid off from their previous job
  • People new to the Durham area

The majority of StepUp participants are looking for entry or mid-level positions; however, we also have individuals with a college degree (17% of our talent pool) seeking higher level positions. 

 

WHY BUSINESSES HIRE FROM STEPUP

StepUp screens and trains job seekers during its 32-hour Employment Readiness Workshop.

EMPLOYEE SCREENING

Every person who enters StepUp’s Job Skills Workshop has met our partnership criteria of being:  

  • Between the ages of 18 and 60
  • Ready to work with a valid Social Security number
  • 90 days clean and sober (drug testing performed randomly)
  • Free of any pending charges
  • Not listed on the sex offender registry 

 

EMPLOYEE TRAINING

Every person who graduates from StepUp’s Job Skills Workshop must have demonstrated:

  • Honesty: StepUp staff require 100% transparency on any and all issues that affect one's ability to obtain and maintain employment (e.g. criminal background, housing, transportation, childcare, etc.) 
  • Teachability: StepUp staff monitor a participant's attitude towards task completion and their response to constructive feedback, offering coaching and correction as needed. 
  • Reliability: StepUp runs its 32-hour Job Skills Workshop like a simulated work environment. Participants must restart the entire week at a later date if they demonstrate continual tardiness or a failure to complete assigned tasks. 

 

EMPLOYEE SUPPORT & ACCOUNTABILITY

Every StepUp participant receives a professional Employment Counselor trained to coach job seekers in the skills needed to maintain strong job performance. These skills include:

  • Professionalism
  • Effective communication
  • Conflict resolution
  • Time management

If a StepUp participant has difficulties on the job for any reason, StepUp's Employment Recruiter works diligently to meet with the employee (and employer if necessary) to (1) discuss the issue, (2) create an action plan for success, and (3) locate another eligible candidate if necessary. Employers should also note that StepUp participants sign an agreement stating that they will stay with an employer for a minimum of six months. 

 

employer testimonials

  HR Director Janis Clark Davis (left) and her assistant, Wilhelmina Leggett (middle), guide StepUp Employment Recruiter, Erin Roesch (right), on a tour of the Measurement Incorporated facility where StepUp graduates will work. Read more about Janis' experiences hiring from StepUp in this interview.

JANIS CLARK DAVIS, HUMAN RESOURCES DIRECTOR, MEASUREMENT INCORPORATED

"[StepUp referrals] have been by far some of the best employees we have had as far as temp goes. They caught on and had the skill sets they needed. The manager looked at their résumés, and when they came in, she interviewed them and said, "Yes, I want that person!" So that is phenomenal -  we don’t usually get that."

JACOB DALTON, VICE PRESIDENT, CUSTOM HOME EXTERIORS: 

“I have seen Brandon’s initiative grow, and he has gained a strong desire to succeed. He has also learned the technical skills needed to properly program and operate a $100,000 + machine. Additionally, he has gained a working knowledge of Windows Excel, which has served both he and Custom Home Exteriors well in efforts to improve our inventory control.”

WESLEY JONES, VICE PRESIDENT, NEWCOMB & COMPANY:

“Keith joined us as an inexperienced apprentice in our Sheet Metal Installation Group in April of 2013. He has progressed rapidly into a junior mechanic, capable of handling additional responsibility. He has a strong drive to improve his skills and take on even greater responsibility. His positive attitude and pride in his work is motivating to all those working around him.

As for all job candidates, but perhaps even more with those from StepUp, we look for ones exhibiting a true desire to come to work each day with that ‘desire’ to improve and to do the best that they can. We were not wrong about Keith! We think his potential is great!”

JOHN C. MATTHEWS, EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT, BAKER ROOFING: 

"The StepUp jobs program provides a unique opportunity to the Raleigh business community.  By helping willing community members sharpen their administrative, time management, and financial management skills, the program is actively providing more qualified service industry employee candidates.”