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Sectoral Initiatives Program: Employment and Social Development Canada

Sectoral Initiatives Program: Employment and Social Development Canada

Author: Joyce Bott

The Sectoral Initiatives Program is a grants and contributions program with a mandate to help key sectors of the Canadian economy identify, forecast and address their human resources and skills issues. The Program provides funding to stakeholders to develop and distribute sector-specific labour market intelligence, national occupational standards, skills certification and accreditation systems, and innovative workforce development approaches while also promoting the participation of under-represented groups.

  • Grant amount: up to $2.5M
  • Project duration: up to 36 months
  • Application period 2021-Jan-22 to 2021-03-04
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Project Objectives

  • Identify emerging requirements by sector
    • Identify the largest companies with these needs (i.e. which company is struggling to fill positions? What skills are they looking for?)
    • Based on job posting analytics, we can see that top companies hiring in Ontario are:
    • Top job titles posted for company A include
    • Top job titles posted for company B include
    • Top job titles posted for company C include
  • Help key sectors of the Canadian economy address skills issues/shortages
    • Perform a skills inventory based on all 4500+ active courses offered at Niagara College (staff to work with faculty to tag each course with skills)
    • Determine which of our courses offer the skills sought by the employer...repackage the courses into job specific microcredentials (vetted by the partner companies)
    • run a marketing campaign to recruit prospective students for these microcredentials
    • Perform a skills inventory of all graduating students (i.e. before they walk out the door, make sure their resumes appropriately translate competencies learned in their program to skills sought by employers
  • Describe the needs or issues within a specific sector (or across sectors) that your project will address
    • the need is for skilled labour based on emerging trends 
  • Demonstrate how your project will develop solutions to address the workforce challenges of canadian workers and employers
    • We will help close the skills gap by supplying the skilled labour 

Project activities

Describe how your project’s activities align with one or more of the following categories:

  • sectoral labour market intelligence and tools
    • purchase of EMSI's skills-match platform (where we will house NC's skills inventory in)
    • this platform is like a dating service between employers and NC's programs/courses, student profiles.
  • sectoral training and worker transition
    • we will repackage our courses into relevant job-specific microcredentials that meet the emerging needs of industry...targetting displaced workers who want to quickly get back into the workforce
    • we will empower graduates with resumes that have translated learned competencies into sought after skills by employers

Provide clear and relevant description of the project activities.

  • skill tagging of 4500+ courses
  • program repackaging
  • microcredential training

Provide clear and feasible timelines to complete the project activities.

  • perform needs analysis (3 months)
  • perform NC skills inventory on all courses offered (6 months)
  • perform graduating student skills inventory (6 months)

Describe how the partner(s) will be involved in this project.

  • we will get our partner employers to vet their needs and vet proposed microcredentials

Project Results

  • Describe how the sector(s) will benefit from the project
    • increased employer satisfaction 
  • Describe the expected results of your project. They must be specific, concrete and measurable
    • in x years, we were able to improve our graduate employment rate by x%, and our employer satisfaction rate by x%”.
  • List the indicators that you will use to measure the progress towards your project results
    • # of microcredentials created
    • # employers serviced
    • # students serviced
    • In x years, we were able to improve our graduate employment rate by x%
    • In x years we were able to improve our employer satisfaction rate by x%.
  • Describe how you plan to gather, measure and report on results achieved by your project
    • use a ticket log to track student/employer consults
    • alumni surveys

Project Costs

  • Provide a brief and clear justification of how you intend to use the money
  • Demonstrate that the costs are reasonable and support the project activities
    • 20K x 3 yrs for software platform to house skills inventory
    • 60K x 3 yrs for part time staff to do consults with faculty/students/employers
    • 3K x 2 yrs for marketing 
    • teaching faculty?

Additional Funding Considerations

Special focus on any of these groups:

  • persons with disabilities
  • Indigenous peoples
  • visible minorities
  • women
  • youth
  • newcomers

Special focus on any of these sectors:

  • agriculture and food processing
  • construction
  • information and communication technology
  • health
  • manufacturing
  • natural resources and environment
  • tourism and hospitality
  • transportation
  • sector(s) not listed above that have pressing workforce needs due to COVID-19 and/or can contribute to economic recovery (ie. small businesses...transitioning to ecommerce)

Steps to Apply

  1. Create your GCOS account. It may take up to 10 business days to create your account
  2. Read the applicant guide to complete your application form. This guide includes details for each question of the form
  3. Complete the budget detail template (PDF Format) and upload it in GCOS
  4. Apply online using GCOS