JOB SEEKING STRATEGIES
Looking for a job isn’t easy. No matter what your personal situation or background is. It takes time, effort and a willingness to accept that at times it doesn’t seem fair. And in this new world of pandemic, there are additional new challenges. There are a variety of strategies and resources that are utilized when in the job hunt. Programs to help you assess your abilities and gain new skills. Reaching out to your own personal network. Connecting to a placement agency. Watching job boards. Posting on Social Media that you are looking for work.
One resource that you may not be aware of is the Okmulgee Workforce Center. This center is considered a one-stop shop for job seekers. They are NOT a placement agency, but they help individuals be job ready. In this one office, you will find agencies and programs that offer the following services:
OESC* (for unemployment and job seeking resources/assistance)
Title 1/WIOA* ( job training and related services to unemployed and underemployed individuals)
Vocational Rehab (DHS program for those with disabilities)
Veterans vocational assistance
CESO (contracting and employment support office for Creek Nation)
Computer Resource Center (to be used for job seeking matters)
*OESC stands for Oklahoma Employment Security Commission / WIOA is pronounced wee-oh-ah and stands for Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act
Let’s focus a bit on the WIOA program that can help adult job seekers be job-ready. This includes assessments, job exploration/counseling, resume building, mock interviews/interview preparation, and training services (including apprenticeships, on the job training, etc). They also assist youth job seekers (ages 16-24) as well as individuals who might have certain barriers to employment (such as ex-offenders, ex-addicts, poor credit history, etc). Those that didn’t graduate from high school can inquire about GED testing. Clients that want to be re-trained or start a new career path may be eligible for paid training. The Job Readiness program, Financial Literacy and Life Skills are additional ways that they can help. There is a program for Tuition Assistance. And they also work with Veterans.
During this pandemic time period, you will need to make appointments to visit the Oklahoma Workforce center in Okmulgee. Let the receptionist know what your situation is and what you need - they will connect you to the appropriate person for appointment scheduling. When you enter the Okmulgee Workforce Center, they will take your temperature at the door (and you will need to wear your mask). To the immediate left of reception is a number of computer stations (including one that is adapted for various assistive needs). This is open to the public for job seeking computer activities, etc. Be sure to check out the bulletin board to see if there are any job postings by local employers. There are a lot of cubicle work spaces where representatives from the various entities listed above are officed. There is a computer testing room (for those situations in which an employer may wish for a prospective employee to take an assessment).
In addition to all of the various job boards (like indeed.com), also be sure to check out job postings at www.okjobmatch.com. This is a state-wide job database (and we encourage all Okmulgee employers to post their jobs here as well). If you need help with searching or building your resume, be sure to contact the Okmulgee Workforce Center for assistance and guidance. The Wioa Okmulgee FB page also post job openings as well. There are other ‘job related’ FB pages as well to check in with.
Local employers: they can help you as well. Whether with recruitment and hiring events, they can assist with on-the-job training or transition/dislocated employee situations (such as layoffs or closings).
Okmulgee Workforce Center (918-304-3160) is located at 1601 S. Wood Dr. (HWY. 75) (new location as of fall of 2019)
Monday-Friday from 8am to 5pm by appointment only.
Deb Marshall is the Assistant Executive Director of Okmulgee Area Development Corp (OADC). She is a native of Kansas City MO. Deb spent nearly 20 years in community and economic dev
elopment in the Tulsa metroplex and Tanzania East Africa. She loves using her superpowers of being a connector and a communicator to help Okmulgee thrive. Contact her at Deb@ChooseOkmulgee.com.