Employers seeking to connect with workers ready to apply their skills can do so through many avenues, and one effective option is the Subsidized Employment program. That’s what ACL Facility Services (ACL), a full-service HVAC contractor, is doing with assistance from Workforce Solutions Capital Area.
ACL is a sister company of AJW Facilities and Construction in San Diego, Calif. ACL has been in business in Travis County for one year, and today employs seven full-time workers. Recently, ACL brought on two full-time employees, and completed the hiring process with the Workforce Education and Readiness Continuum (WERC) and Workforce Solutions Capital Area.
Tim Galbraith is ACL’s founder and general manager. Adding new employees to his growing company can be challenging because of Austin’s low unemployment rate and the expectation of higher wages from experienced HVAC technicians, said Tim, but he is making the hiring process more efficient by participating in the Subsidized Employment program.
ACL began working with Workforce Solutions Capital Area in early 2018, and attended two Meet the Grads hiring events. At these events, employers could interview job seekers who had graduated HVAC training programs hosted by community partners and funded through the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) and WERC.
“We started going to the interview sessions and met with a lot of new candidates that had just gotten their certification, but needed more experience to refine their skills,” said Tim.
This was when ACL entered the Subsidized Employment program, a federally-funded program administered by Workforce Solutions Capital Area that offers employers a subsidy to employ participating and eligible job seekers.
The benefits of participating soon became evident: “It was a perfect fit for us, since we could train them to our way of doing things and have them ‘audition’ for our open positions. If they were not a perfect fit, we were able to switch out candidates until we found a match,” said Tim.
It was at a Meet the Grads event in February that ACL agreed to enter into the Subsidized Employment program. Workforce Solutions Capital Area’s Business Solutions team now collaborates with ACL to place candidates with the company, and ACL hired two candidates as full-time employees in June.
For employers, the value in participating in the Subsidized Employment program is having access to a pool of motivated people who have completed training and are now willing to learn and prove themselves to employers, according to Tim.
“Also, as an employer, it is so useful to be able to see the candidates work for you while the program pays their wages, so that you are not wasting time and money to find the perfect fit by yourself,” said Tim.
At ACL, providing for local communities is an important value, and participating in the program was a natural choice to make.
ACL engages in community work with multiple associations, such as the Austin Association of Facility and Maintenance Engineers (AAFAME) and the International Facility Management Association (IFMA). ACL has also committed to future donations to the DePelchin Children’s Center and the Ronald McDonald House at Dell Children’s Hospital, said Tim.
“Giving back to the community is essential for the community to thrive. It helps those living in the community to become self-sufficient,” Tim said.
For other employers seeking to connect with trained people ready to work, Tim recommends Subsidized Employment: “Give it a try. It will benefit an individual who is looking to contribute to society, as well as your business,” he said.
About Subsidized Employment
Workforce Solutions Capital Area’s Subsidized Employment program can reimburse participating employers 50% or more on straight-time wages for 8 weeks. The employment may be part time, less than 30 hours per week or full-time, up to 40 hours per week.
Visit Workforce Solutions Capital Area’s Employee Skills Training page to learn more.