Ivy Tech Community College continues to grow its relationship with businesses in Indiana, solidifying its sense of responsibility for community economic development. The shifting role of Ivy Tech’s Workforce Consultant exemplifies the relationship between the College and local companies. Evolving from Account Executive to Workforce Consultant involved more than a change in title; rather the focus of the position evolved from selling training to comprehensive business consulting.

Certified in Carew International’s Dimensions of Professional Consulting, Ivy Tech Community College’s Workforce Consultants assist Indiana businesses of all sizes to improve performance and efficiency through analysis and solution development. Assisting businesses to define and articulate their challenges, consultants identify solutions tied to company priorities and desired outcomes. Embracing their new role and able to jettison revenue metrics, the workforce consultants establish relationships with local businesses, discovering the details of a company’s mission and operations, identifying strengths and weaknesses, and assisting leadership to uncover current or foreseeable issues. Consultants take company decision-makers beyond identifying solutions to current needs and help them to discover their future needs and the future needs of their customers.

Jody Fledderman, President and CEO of Batesville Tool & Die, Inc., describes his business’s relationship with the college:

“Ivy Tech has become much more than a training and education provider. They are truly partners to Batesville Tool & Die for our business. The team at Ivy Tech works with our team in a consultative manner, asking about the various needs of our business and then proposing solutions. We have partnered with the College to address needs of our current workforce and to create talent pipelines at our local schools. Ivy Tech’s faculty and staff listen to our team and explore ways to solve our needs before proposing ideas. It’s really collaboration for the best results.”

Ivy Tech’s breadth of knowledge, statewide partnerships, and geography provide consultants with a wealth of resources to offer employers. Consultants facilitate meetings with academic program chairs who can create customized degree programs; refer employers to career development staff who provide access to job seekers and post job openings; and present businesses with a full complement of solutions to increase organizational effectiveness.

A sampling of potential solutions to meet immediate and future needs of local businesses may include:

Human resource services: talent pipeline development, job profiling, human resources assessments, interview training;

Leadership strategy, selection, development, and succession management;

Quality training, Lean, Six Sigma;

Technical skills: PLCs, NIMS certifications, IT training and certifications;

Achieve Your Degree: a unique employer tuition assistance program that defers costs to the end of each semester, boosting employee recruitment, retention, and internal promotions;

Assistance with grant writing, accessing available state and federal funding for training; and

Third party solutions such as Conexus ICON, Salesforce, DDI Leadership Assessments, third party training providers, and more.

As consultants work with businesses to develop a comprehensive plan to address company challenges, often a third party product emerges as a solution, and Ivy Tech Workforce Consultants are knowledgeable and well-equipped to educate business on their availability and use. The Conexus ICON database located at www.conexusicon.com, has emerged as one such solution. The ICON database is an easy to use, dynamic online tool that connects Indiana suppliers to procurement organizations and facilitates growth in all key economic sectors. Ivy Tech Workforce Consultant Kathy Neary discusses the benefits of ICON:

“Working in Northwest Indiana we have several manufacturers who have headquarters in Indiana and serve international clients.  I have noticed that many of these businesses are not connected to local suppliers.  Just recently a pharmaceutical manufacturer was looking for a shelving supplier who has steel items that are FDA certified that would be closer than their New Jersey affiliate.  I was able to connect them with a local supplier who could provide them what they needed at a much lower cost.  I have this request many times and often connect companies virtually.  Many could benefit from a system or repository with this information.”

Combining third-party tools with Ivy Tech-provided customized solutions can lead to organization wide continuous improvement and provides a competitive advantage. To connect with your closest Ivy Tech Workforce Consultant or to learn more about the services that Ivy Tech Community College can provide to your business, contact Janet Rummel, Vice President of Marketing and Consulting at rummel@ivytech.edu.

Janet Rummel is Vice President of Workforce Alignment Marketing and Consulting at Ivy Tech Community College. She is responsible for supporting Ivy Tech’s strategic vision related to workforce alignment and marketing of consultative services statewide.

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