Workforce Development Specialist

Job city: 
Job region: 
Greater Toronto Area
Application Deadline: 
Thursday, October 10, 2019 - 4:00pm
Job terms: 
Full-time contract

Position Summary:

Centre for Skills Development (Centre) team members are supported and expected to work as part of a collaborative team, aligned with a shared goal of providing high quality service to clients, employers, the community and funders. Each team member uses strong communication skills and shares knowledge to act as a cross-functional team of service delivery partners, responsible for achieving excellence in client service. All team members share responsibility and accountability for the quality of our face-to-face and virtual interactions, for the promotion of all Centre programming, for providing outreach to various locations and for supporting community engagement activities. Centre employees are flexible and adapt as needed to prioritize client service, while ensuring contract and policy compliance. Our vison of sustainable and meaningful employment for everyone is reflected in our day-to-day interactions and our willingness to step in to support each other as needed. With a strong team-based approach – developed and maintained through mutual respect, integrity, and empathy – we understand that every member of the team has an important role in ensuring all our goals are met.

The Workforce Development Specialist role is responsible for providing individualized services to employers and clients to achieve labour market attachment for clients who are unlikely to find work through their own self-marketing efforts. Workforce Development Specialists provide clients with direct support to negotiate with employers for new job opportunities that may exist or be developed (carved) from existing job descriptions based on the needs, skills and abilities of the client and individual employer needs. This role includes promoting other Centre for Skills services out to employer contacts who might benefit from access to various programs that are relevant to the business community.

Area of Specialty:

Newcomers to Canada
This Workforce Development Specialist position will have a special focus on working with foreign-trained professionals. Expectations of this specialist role will include:

  • Acting as the team’s “expert” in this area - staying up-to-date on current resources, local newcomer-serving agencies, trends and issues
  • Acting as the “go-to” for newcomers seeking assistance with accessing the labour market and links to business contacts in their field of expertise - maintaining a higher than average percentage of newcomer clients on active caseload
  • Working with clients from Enhanced Language Training and other Centre for Skills newcomer programs to provide insights on the labour market, and workplace preparation supports
  • Working with the local employer community to promote the benefits of hiring newcomers and increasing workforce diversity, with a goal of marketing Centre for Skills clients to opportunities within your employer network
  • Seeking out and participating in informal learning opportunities related to serving newcomers and sharing knowledge with the rest of the team
  • Representing the team at newcomer focused events and at newcomer partnership meetings


  • Meet with referred clients and program support teams, Employment Specialists, Settlement Information Specialists, and ELT Instructor and/or other Centre for Skills team members to learn about client’s needs and career-related goals
  • Case conference with internal employment services and settlement teams as needed to assist clients in identifying and applying for appropriate employment opportunities, ensuring client needs are being met
  • Conduct internet-based research on career planning, job searching, and employment related topics to address client needs and personal professional knowledge
  • Develop on-the-job training opportunities depending on employer and individual needs – including volunteer placements, job trials, and both subsidized and unsubsidized work placements
  • Working as part of the overall team to develop placements with and without incentives across all Employment Service sites; meet or exceed monthly placement targets
  • Market and present career opportunities to job seekers that fit with their skills, abilities and employment goals
  • Visit workplaces prior to work placement start, to assess work environment to ensure health & safety and employment standards are maintained; as well as perform at least one (or more as needed) site monitor visit to assess progress on-the-job
  • Monitor individual’s long-term progress through conducting follow-up activities and offering job retention coaching as needed
  • Respond to issues that arise with clients by utilizing support services both internally and externally
  • Maintain comprehensive and up-to-date file documentation, as outlined in MTCU and IRCC funder guidelines and as per Centre for Skills requirements
  • Manage reporting expectations to submit accurate and timely reports to track activities, as well as ensure timeliness of case note entries
  • Contact local employers to discuss their hiring and employee training needs and offer support through the Employment Services (ES) and Canada-Ontario Job Grant (COJG) programs
  • Negotiate wage subsidies for job placements when relevant
  • Ensure employers meet eligibility and suitability requirements for various program models, and communicate those requirements to business
  • Assist companies to define, develop and refine their human resource requirements
  • Assist employers with filling out appropriate ES paperwork, as outlined in MTCU guidelines
  • Assist employers in creating on-the-job orientation and training plans to help new employee(s) adjust to the workplace and role
  • Provide coaching to employees and employers on Employment Standards and clarification on process to manage issues that arise under ES and OHSA
  • Maintain comprehensive and up-to-date employer records for ES and ESL & Immigrants Services in in-house databases and maintain up-to-date files, as outlined in MTCU and IRCC funder guidelines and as per Centre for Skills requirements
  • Assist the team with grassroots marketing and outreach efforts on an ongoing basis
  • Work in partnership with department Coordinators and teams to deliver and continuously improve Centre for Skills services, processes, and best practices
  • Represent the team at job fairs, networking events and partnership meeting tables
  • Assist the Coordinators and teams to plan and host special events, such as job fairs and employer panels
  • On a scheduled basis, provide back-up coverage for the Employment Services’ Resource Specialists and ESL & Immigrants Services located in any of the Centre for Skills sites
  • Other job-related duties as assigned by Coordinator, Senior Coordinator and members of the Centre for Skills’ leadership team


To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty listed above satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skills and abilities required. Employees who do not possess the requirements for a job at the time of hire are expected to attain the skills, knowledge and abilities required within a specified period as agreed upon, in writing, with the hiring Manager. Reasonable accommodations will be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Post-secondary degree or diploma
  • Preferred - Career Development Practitioner diploma/certificate from an approved post-secondary institution
  • Suitable educational equivalents may be considered for individuals with 5+ years of highly related experience in a similar role within an employment services setting
  • Additional, relevant job development and/or job retention training would be an asset
  • Knowledge of all Employment Ontario programs - Employment Services, Canada Ontario Job Grant (COJG), and Literacy and Basic Skills (Doorways) - and strong willingness and interest to learn more as required
  • History of taking a professional and cooperative teamwork approach, projecting a positive attitude and exemplifying Centre for Skills’ mission, vision and values
  • Proven ability to work in busy, outcomes-based model; accountable for independently reaching program targets
  • Proven ability to build and maintain long-term trust relationships with employers from various sectors
  • Strong comfort level with cold-calling, facilitating presentations, and conducting face-to-face and phone meetings with employers
  • Broad-based knowledge of current labour market trends and community services relating to employment, training, job retention, mental health, newcomers/ESL, etc.
  • Broad-based knowledge of workforce development options, grants and incentives available to Ontario-based employers
  • Proven ability to operate independently while demonstrating a high level of integrity and professionalism
  • Strong ability to maintain appropriate professional boundaries, ensure confidentiality and apply professional code of conduct consistently
  • Experience working with adults from culturally and socio-economically diverse backgrounds
  • Strong knowledge of job search techniques, career development, and issues relating to unemployment
  • Proven comfort level deescalating situations where clients or employers may be acting in a negative or inappropriate manner
  • Broad-based knowledge of Halton / Peel based community services with a strong willingness and interest in learning more on an ongoing basis
  • Self-starter who is results-oriented and self-motivated; takes initiative to ensure a high standard of service delivery with the ability to make use of downtime efficiently and productively
  • Strong attention to detail and ability to multi-task and meet deadlines in a fast-paced environment
  • Excellent analytical skills and problem-solving capabilities
  • Well-developed relationship-building skills with the ability to provide excellent internal customer service with a professional demeanor
  • Highly skilled and experienced using the MS Office suite (Excel, Word, Outlook), internet search engines, social media platforms and career-related software
  • Solid working knowledge of databases such as FileMaker Pro, EOIS-CaMS, CTS
  • Access to a reliable vehicle, possession of a valid driver’s license, and willingness to travel extensively throughout Halton and Peel regions as required
  • Available to work day, evening and/or holiday shifts on a rotating schedule as required

Reports To: Workforce Development Coordinator
Start Date: Immediately (October 2019)
End Date: March 31, 2020 (with possibility of contract extension, based on funding)
Schedule: 35 hours/week
Hours of Work: 8:30 am – 4:30 pm (with ability to work evening hours, as required)
Pay Rate: $28.71 per hour or $31.63 per hour (depending on credentials)
Locations: Burlington (home base), with extensive travel between Centre for Skills sites (including approved itinerant locations) and employer sites as required

How to Apply:

Please e-mail or fax your resume and cover letter by Thursday, October 10, 2019, 4:00 p.m. EST to:

Human Resources
Centre for Skills Development


Fax: 905-634-2775

To be considered, all applications must include the job number and title in the email subject line or on the cover sheet if faxing.

Thank you to all applicants for their interest in Centre for Skills, however, only those selected for an interview will be contacted. If contacted for an interview, please inform us should accommodation be required.

In the spirit of the Human Rights Code, we ask that resumes not include personal data such as age, health, marital and family status.