Governor McAuliffe Announces 50th Anniversary of Virginia Jobs Investment Program
-Incentive supports growth of business communities across the Commonwealth and employment of Virginia-
RICHMOND - Governor Terry McAuliffe announced today the 50th anniversary of the Virginia Jobs Investment Program (VJIP). Created in 1965 as part of the Industrial Training division of the Virginia Community College System, the program provides consultative services and funding to companies creating new jobs or experiencing technological change. As a business development incentive supporting economic development, VJIP reduces the human resource development costs of new and expanding companies. VJIP is state-funded, demonstrating Virginia’s commitment to enhancing job opportunities for its citizens.
A tracking system was established in 1997, and it is estimated that VJIP has supported more than 2,500 projects, over 365,600 jobs and $29 billion in capital investment since that time.
Speaking about today’s announcement, Governor McAuliffe said, “A pipeline of skilled workers is critical to the economic health of our Commonwealth, and that is why workforce development is one of my pillars of creating a new Virginia economy. For five decades, the Virginia Jobs Investment Program has continuously improved the professional delivery of services that positively impact our businesses’ most important resource—their labor pool. We are confident that VJIP, along with its higher education and workforce system partners, will continue to play an integral role in connecting growing businesses with Virginia’s talent for the next five decades to come.”
“VJIP is an important tool that helps us assist companies in attracting, retaining and developing world-class talent,” said Secretary of Commerce and Trade Maurice Jones. As such, it’s one of our most important economic development incentives. We need to be sure we invest in making this program even more robust for the next 50 years.”
VJIP was moved to the Virginia Department of Economic Development in 1985, and then to the Virginia Department of Business Assistance in 1998. In July 2014, the Virginia Economic Development Partnership became the administrator of the program, where it is now more closely aligned with Virginia’s economic development strategies and corporate outreach in an efficient way to partner with allies and serve companies more effectively.
Working closely with company personnel, the Virginia Jobs Investment Program offers consulting services at no charge, in addition to direct funding to offset eligible companies’ recruitment and training costs.
Consulting services include:
• Recruitment and training analysis to identify company needs regarding recruitment, pre-employment assessment, curriculum, facilities, instructors, training aids, length of training, job requirements, training schedules, existing training and process skills training.
• Recruitment assistance by offering guidance on writing job descriptions, ads, employee handbooks, and recruiting and selection processes; networking company with other state and local programs that can assist with recruitment, screening, and interviewing needs; and, if desired, assistance in designing a pre-employment assessment program.
• Training assistance by coordinating company-specific training needs with Virginia’s comprehensive educational and training system, whether it is process skills training, soft skills training, or both.
Assistance in any of the programs offered by VJIP is eligible to projects that create basic employment for the Commonwealth, as basic employment brings new income into the state, stimulates additional employment, and is the basis for further economic growth. These businesses or functions must directly or indirectly derive more than 50% of their revenues from out of state sources, as determined by VJIP.
On December 15, Governor McAuliffe announced that his biennial budget will include $932,000 for Virginia TalentLink, which will support the rebranding of VJIP. The new program will develop an information portal for businesses to connect with regional resources and talent. Virginia TalentLink will provide access to better data analytics to find, plan and assist in the development of talent pipelines in high-demand occupations and skills.
For more information on VJIP, please visit http://www.yesvirginia.org/AssetRich/VJIP.