Tech Jobs Connex Action Centre Officially Opened Yesterday
Needed help for displaced RIM workers in finding job opportunities
Waterloo Region Tech Jobs Connex, a new job action centre hosted by Communitech at Waterloo City Hall, officially had it's opening ceremony yesterday. The employment facility is already off to a great start helping displaced RIM workers find their next opportunities.
In its first three months of operation, the centre has helped 15 percent of its clients find suitable employment or pursue additional education. The Ontario government is funding the centre as an Employment Ontario project, and Minister John Milloy, on behalf of the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities and Waterloo Mayor Brenda Halloran helped celebrate that traction at the official opening of the centre today.
“Quick action to invest in the skills and vision of workers displaced during RIM’s cutbacks is helping to ensure that talented and experienced people will continue to be part of Ontario’s Information and Communications Technology sector,” said Minister Milloy.
“Waterloo City Hall is the right place to host this centre, at the heart of a community that supports a strong and vibrant tech sector,” said Mayor Halloran.
The Ontario government announced on August 13, 2012 that it would partner with Communitech, RIM and the local education community to support laid-off tech workers in Waterloo Region by providing advice, training and support needed to continue their careers in the province. Tech Jobs Connex opened August 20, first in temporary quarters at the Accelerator Centre and then starting October 15 at Waterloo City Hall.
“Having the support of Tech Jobs Connex definitely made a difference to my job search which has ended successfully in re-employment,” said former RIM employee Baljeet Bilkhu. “I would encourage others to avail themselves of the services provided in order to land a new role in this area.”
Waterloo Region’s tech sector generates over $30 billion in revenues annually in a community of just 550,000 people. There are close to 1,000 tech companies in the Region, including more than 400 startups.
“The tech sector in Waterloo Region is diverse and growing, and we see Tech Jobs Connex as an important service to match qualified candidates with employers to retain excellent talent,” said Iain Klugman, CEO of Communitech. “We also recognize that job change is a stressful situation, and we hope that the program will ease the transition and help individuals land their next opportunity.”
In addition to Tech Jobs Connex, Communitech has staged numerous career fairs which have enabled matches between employers and suitable talent. Communitech has actively supported displaced RIM workers since 2011 when Employment Ontario and Communitech developed on-line services for laid-off tech workers who could post resumes, share job leads and access job postings by employers in related businesses in Waterloo Region.
“I just started working at the beginning of October and I actually got this job after going to a Tech Jobs+ job fair,” one client wrote to Communitech.
“You and your company added the comfort needed after a stressful time between jobs…I am very happily (re-) employed,” wrote another.
Anyone wanting more information can go to Communitech’s websitsewww.communtiech.ca or contact Alayne Hynes, Tech Jobs Connex Manager,Alayne@communitech.ca.