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Sharpening Skills for Tomorrow's Workforce
Benchmade of Oregon City used a special grant to train their workforce
Roberta & Les De Asis - Benchmade
Roberta & Les De Asis - Benchmade

 
Les and Roberta De Asis faced a serious problem. Their business, Benchmade, makes some of the finest knives in the world, and they employ some of the best people in the manufacturing industry. Recently, Benchmade won a prestigious award from the U.S. Department of Defense for the quality of the product they made for the military.
 
So what’s the problem? The future. Les and Roberta realized that standing still in their manufacturing processes really meant slipping backwards as the industry and manufacturing progressed.
 
Benchmade needed to assess their current workforce, and then train them in the latest practices. 
 
So Les and Roberta turned to a new friend: WorkSource Oregon . The local Clackamas County Workforce Response Team of WorkSource Oregon provided a training grant and found team members who could do the assessments and training of their workforce.
 
New Horizons provided training in Word, Access, and Excel in order to help implement new productivity tools into their work environment. The grant also provided leadership development and specialized training for their sales and marketing staff.
 
“It made us be more organized and thoughtful and it’s been great,” says Roberta De Asis. “I had no idea this was out there. I’m very impressed with the support the state is giving to private business to help ensure employability in the area. Finding great people is always a challenge so if we can grow them from within there’s a lot of value for the company. I’m also very impressed with the support we got from the state level.”
 
Les is equally pleased.
 
“If you truly want to grow your workforce today you need to maintain a contemporary position in manufacturing. The training and state aid helped us dramatically. It is done at a local level. The trainers, and the people we are working with came in and thoroughly took us through a process to know exactly what skill sets were required.”
 
As a result, Benchmade is preparing to compete in a global market while keeping local jobs.
 
WorkSource Oregon can help your business prepare for the future, either with grants for specialized training, or through pre-paid recruiting services.
 

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