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New North, Inc. providing more online workforce resources amid pandemic

Published: Jan. 14, 2021 at 4:43 PM CST
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GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) - Throughout 2020, Wisconsin businesses were surveyed to monitor the pandemic’s economic impact.

One of the organizations behind those surveys is using what was learned to try to mitigate last year’s drag on the economy.

“The pandemic that we’re in certainly has affected certain segments of our population disproportionally over others,” said Barb LaMue.

LaMue is President and CEO of New North, Inc., a nonprofit regional economic development corporation serving 18 counties.

“We felt that we really needed to create some upskilling programs to get people back to work,” said LaMue.

One of the group’s first initiatives in the pandemic was partnering with Microsoft and Gener8tor to offer digital training courses, aiming to put people without work into in-demand industries.

“Looking at how we can reposition individuals that may have been in the hospitality industry or the restaurant industry, getting them trained that they can move into these careers,” said LaMue.

Since then New North has created two new online tools which launched in December - a “Talent Hub” and “IntelTracker”.

“We wanted a place where people could feel comfortable learning, and then making connections,” said LaMue.

The Talent Hub organizes important and useful information into one place. It features networking groups, training programs, and other resources.

“To really help be that initial one stop if you are a job seeker, if you are an employer,” said LaMue.

The IntelTracker compliments the hub, analyzing data and the latest trends to help organizations and businesses in their decision making. It includes some of the findings from the surveys conducted in partnership with UW-Oshkosh and others.

It’s the kind of information LaMue says state officials have utilized.

“It helped guide their decision making as to the creation of new programs and getting grants or loans and other programs out the door,” said LaMue.

LaMue says for 2021 they’ll be looking at ways address rural broadband access and workforce diversity and equity, so the economy can become stronger for all.

She knows the pandemic isn’t over, and rebuilding will be a long process, but LaMue is heartened by the amount of collaboration and support she’s seen among local nonprofits, economic development corporations, chambers of commerce, and communities in general.

“You’re seeing how people genuinely care for one another and it’s first finding out about their health, and then how can they help, and then how can they financially get them through this,” said LaMue. “We certainly thank everyone for hanging in there and we will get back on track and become and even more resilient region.”

To visit the Talent Hub CLICK HERE.

To visit the IntelTracker CLICK HERE.

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