b'TALENT DEVELOPMENTThe dedicated, experienced staff at Networks Northwest helps connect job seekers and workers to the employers who need talent. Northwest Michigan Works! is the signature program in an array of services that help people be job-ready in the areas that employers need most. Our unique services help our clients reach their goals, but the hard work is ultimately all theirs. In the following pages you will be inspired by people from all over Northern Michigan who have put in the effort to take the next big step in their careers.$500,000 Job SeekersAdult EducationJobs for MichigansOffender Success GraduatesSkilled TradesEmployee RetentionBusiness Services ApprenticeshipsIn March 2020, Northwest Michigan Works! followed State of Michigan and local Health Department recommendations and guidelines to quickly transition to a remote and virtual work environment. While the majority of staff worked remotely, essential frontline personnel remained onsite at our American Job Centers (AJC) assisting with an onslaught of incoming calls from customers who found themselves unemployed during the early stages of the pandemic.While the public no longer had physical walk-in access to our AJCs, we quickly evaluated service delivery options and began developing methods to deliver much needed demand driven services to our customers. The use of virtual meeting platforms became the norm for one-on-one customer meetings, workshops, and networking groups.Throughout the remainder of 2020, a significant number of Michigan workers continued to experience layoffs and struggled to obtain unemployment insurance benefits.With the State of Michigan Unemployment Insurance Agency unable to meet the increased demands placed on their systems and staff, Northwest Michigan Works! volunteered to partner with the State of Michigan to train additional staff in resolving complex unemployment insurance claims.As a direct result, Northwest Michigan Works! staff provided direct assistance to 32,547 unemployment claimants. Additionally, early in the pandemic, Northwest Michigan Works! launched a COVID-19 resource page on the Northwest Michigan Works! website that served as a one-stop location for information and resources related to COVID-19. Visitors to the page could find information regarding assistance in meeting their basic needs such as food, housing, and healthcare; up-to-date data-driven information pertaining to virus transmission and safety protocols; assistance with unemployment benefits, and many more COVID-19 related subjects. As 2020 drew to a close, our Northwest Michigan Works! AJC teams began to see an increase in the number of customers requesting reemployment services. With requests for unemployment insurance assistance decreasing during the same time frame, staff could once again begin to focus on connecting job seekers to employers; while ensuring all customers received compassionate, world-class service. TALENT DEVELOPMENT / NETWORKSNORTHWEST.ORG 3'