Photo by Maxime Agnelli on Unsplash

Industry Training Authority connects apprentices, employers

The Black Press Extreme Career and Education Fair will be in Cranbrook on Nov. 15

A “grey wave” is building, and with it, a potential tsunami of job openings on the horizon as a generation of employees near retirement.

Whether you’re looking to enter the job market, seeking a career change or an employer eager to fill those staffing gaps, the Black Press Extreme Career and Education Fair in Cranbrook on Nov. 15 is the first step to take.

READ MORE: Black Press career fair brings new opportunities to Kootenays

Marlin Ratch, an apprenticeship advisor for the Industry Training Authority, agreed there’s no better place to start.

“Career or employment fairs, like the one hosted by Black Press, are really good because the direction is two-fold,” Ratch said.

For job-seekers, advisors can help them plan and outline their future goals and how to achieve them. For employers, it’s a target-rich environment filled with people eager to work.

And, in a time of greater job openings, that’s where a service like ITA is more valuable than ever.

The “grey wave” is significant in all this, said Ratch.

“It used to be that a person would put out a job ad and find a person who was fully ticketed,” he said. “Now what’s tending to happen, and you see it more and more, is they’re putting out the job ad and looking for the fully ticketed person, the Red Seal person, journeyman or whatever the case may be, and they’re not finding it.

“We, as the apprenticeship authority, we’re out there advocating for apprenticeships and trying to make sure businesses are looking at the option of training.”

Companies can go out and recruit on their own, hire foreign workers and upgrade their credentials, or turn to a service like ITA.

ITA provides guidance for the employee through its foundation program. “Some refer to it as a pre-apprenticeship program. But they get the first level of certification and the technical training,” said Ratch.

And with service for nearly 100 trades ranging from electrician to hairdresser, the program is a perfect launching pad to a career.

“So when they start working as an apprentice, they’ve got their first year of technical training down,” said Ratch, adding, the hours will still be required.

“But we can point them in a direction. The person will have the basic skill set to be able to do it as a monitored activity. As opposed to [a company bringing] someone in off the street who has the basic tool sets but you have to teach them everything.”

For employers, they offer help on obtaining wage subsidies, help with the paperwork, responsibilities and what criteria should be completed through each step of the apprenticeship.

His advice for people attending the Black Press career fair is straightforward: Be curious.

“In a general sense, at any job or career fair, make sure you have a really good up-to-date resume. Talk to WorkBC with how to do that. So you have your background set up. Then come with questions.

“If you don’t know the answer, it’s not a stupid question. Ask the question and if we don’t have the answer, we’ll find the answer.”

The Black Press Extreme Career and Education Fair is coming to Cranbrook on Nov. 15 at the Ktunaxa Nations Building. For more information, go to the event’s Facebook page.

Just Posted

Forestry workers set to begin job action in Kootenays

Operations in Castlegar, Cranbrook, Galloway, Elko, Radium, Golden may see job action this week.

Road trip comes to end with split for Grand Forks Border Bruins

The team is coming off its longest road trip this season.

Grand Forks high school students remember

The school and the Legion joined for the annual Remembrance Day ceremony.

Letter: English town remembers Grand Forks on anniversary of Armistice

Phillip Morris writes from Shrewsbury, England.

Children’s books needed for Christmas hampers

Considering donating some books this Christmas.

Saving salmon: B.C. business man believes hatcheries can help bring back the fish

Tony Allard worked with a central coast First Nation to enhance salmon stocks

High-end B.C. house prices dropping, but no relief at lower levels

But experts say home ownership remains out of reach for many for middle- and lower-income families

Worker killed in collision at B.C. coal mine

Vehicle collision occurred at approximately 10:45 a.m. this morning

B.C. asking for tips on ‘dirty money’ in horse racing, real estate, luxury cars

Action follows a Peter German report on money laundering in B.C. casinos

Canadian dead more than a week after plane crash in Guyana: Global Affairs

Global Affairs said it couldn’t provide further details on the identity of the Canadian citizen

Children between 6 and 9 eligible for $1,200 RESP grant from province

BC Ministry of Education is reminding residents to apply before the deadline

Victoria spent $30,000 to remove John A. Macdonald statue

Contentious decision sparked controversy, apology from mayor

Privacy concerns over credit card use for legal online pot purchases

Worries follow privacy breaches at some Canadian cannabis retailers

NEB approves operating pressure increase to repaired Enbridge pipeline

The pipeline burst outside of Prince George on Oct. 9, now operating at 85 per cent

Most Read