Workforce Development

Savannah River Site Community Reuse Organization

Two states, One future

Our region of Aiken, Allendale, Barnwell, Columbia, and Richmond counties is projected to have more than 37,000 new job openings over the next five years. Most of these opportunities will likely be rooted in the region’s economic drivers-nuclear, manufacturing, cyber security/IT and healthcare-requiring middle or high-skill levels. The SRS Community Reuse Organization assembled to create a strategy for a workforce system that supports the recruitment, retention, and development of talent in preparation to meet the skills demand. The SRS Regional Workforce Study was conducted in 2015 and found 3 major findings: 1) the labor force within the CRO region is highly mobile with strong commuter connections, 2) workforce characteristics vary widely across the region with pronounced differences, and 3) the labor shed for the region includes the surrounding counties of Lexington, Edgefield, Burke and McDuffie.   Ongoing initiatives include creating a database of educational and training resources, establishing networks for community partners and stakeholders, creating awareness of STEM programs and opportunities in the region and to change the perception of these sectors, and collaborating with educational institutions to create training programs. Support from area organizations, like the SRS CRO, is just another example of why Columbia County is competitive and ready for continued economic growth. More information about the Regional Workforce study can be accessed by utilizing the following links.

SRS CRO Regional Workforce Study

Regional Workforce Summary Executive Summary


High Demand Career Initiative

Preparing Georgia’s Future Workforce Now

After hearing the challenges facing businesses in Georgia, Governor Deal created the High Demand Career Initiative (HDCI) to allow the state partners tasked with training Georgia’s future workforce to hear directly from the private sector about the specific needs and skills needed to support them. By bringing these stakeholders together, we were able to gain a better understanding of what is needed by our industries and partner them with existing community assets. A range of in-demand and difficult-to-fill positions were identified, as well as the workforce skills that were difficult to find. To address these gaps, the HDCI team is working with regions across Georgia to assist in the regional implementation of the HDCI model through grant opportunities.

In collaboration with the surrounding counties, Columbia County is currently applying for an HDCI grant to support advanced manufacturing sector partnerships. These sector partnerships intent to be focused on advanced manufacturing and workforce development organizations, educators, training providers, labor representatives, community organizations, economic developers and other stakeholders. In the coming months, sector strategies will be established and goals, policies, and plans of actions will be developed for the betterment of our regional workforce. Effective partnerships will accomplish the following: align education curriculum and training practices with industry needs, close the skills gap, and ensure there is an increase in on-the-job training, apprenticeships, and work-based learning within the high demand sectors. The Development Authority of Columbia County will continue to support the HDCI so that our industry employers may be able to fill their talent needs locally.

High Demand Career Initiative Sector Partnership Guide

Governor’s High Demand Career Initiative Report


Work Source East Central Workforce Development

Connecting Talent with Opportunity

Work Source East Central Georgia is tasked with providing workforce activities that increase employment, retention, and earnings as well as occupational skills attainment. A number of programs are administered through Work Source East Central Georgia including customized training programs, educational programs, incumbent worker training programs, occupational skill straining program, on-the-job training program, and youth services program.