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December 3, 2012

HealthWay Employees Benefit from On-Line Training through Oswego County Workforce New York

Chirag Patel tests a disinfecting filtration system unit at HealthWay Air Quality Solutions in Pulaski. The company partners with Oswego County Workforce New York for on-line training, employee assessments, and other services available to Oswego County businesses.

PULASKI - Vincent Lobdell Sr., founder, president, and chief executive officer of HealthWay air purification systems, is committed to lifelong learning. A positive attitude and a desire to improve are a mandatory quality among his employees.

Founded in 2004, HealthWay manufactures and sells air purification systems for homes, commercial buildings, major hotel chains, the military and medical facilities. The firm specializes in equipment for buildings that require high efficiency in the removal of pollen, odors, and micro-organisms such as bacteria, mold, fungi and viruses.

Located at 3420 Maple Ave., Pulaski, the company currently employs about 40 people. Lobdell restored the former Ontario Iron Works building and made it his company headquarters three years ago. He is expanding the two-story red brick building to accommodate a new product line next year.

HealthWay customers include the Mayo Clinic, Ronald McDonald House, Shriners' Hospitals, FEMA, major hotel properties including Marriott, Wyndham, Hilton, Hyatt and Sheraton hotels, and educational institutions such as Harvard, Florida State, University of California, and SUNY Oswego.

Lobdell's enthusiasm and commitment to quality are reflected in the company's core values, "RISE: Respect, Improving continuously, Success through a winning attitude, and Education."

To make that possible, Lobdell offers his employees access to thousands of on-line courses through the Metrix Learning system offered by Oswego County Workforce New York.

"We want our employees to look at improving continuously," said Lobdell. "Our hiring practices evolve around attitude and a desire to improve."

HealthWay worked with a county government agency, Oswego County Workforce New York, to purchase a license to offer the Metrix Learning system to its employees.

"Oswego County Workforce New York (OCWNY) can help employers assess and/or upgrade the skills of their current work force," said Christine Weaver, Coordinator of Client Services. "For a minimal cost, Prove It! assessments can help employers ensure workers have the skills needed to perform their jobs effectively, while the Metrix On-Line learning system can be used to help employees upgrade their skills."

HealthWay employees can take two sessions annually. Each session is three months long with unlimited access to all courses.

"Metrix was interesting and compelling to me because it offers a very vast range of classes that an employee can take," said Lobdell. "An employee can move from a manufacturing position to a design technician, and they can take on-line classes to learn how to do that. We allow our employees to pick courses that they think best fit their needs on the job, as well as those courses they can continue to use to improve themselves."

"We looked at and discussed different types of programs that were available to us," said Karen Hurd, Director of Operations for HealthWay. "This one covers the whole range of skills and specialized areas, and fit our needs the best. For example, the employees on the manufacturing floor can benefit from learning computer skills as more manufacturing equipment has computer interfaces. They are willing to sign up because they see it aids them in their job. We've received a lot of positive feedback from our workers. People enjoy taking the classes. It offers something for everyone."

"We haven't limited the course work to just business," said Lobdell. "From our perspective, if they are improving and show they have the right attitude, they are a fit here. We would rather promote from within if it makes sense to do that," said Lobdell. OCWNY offers low-cost access to more than 3,500 titles of Metrix online training courses to address training needs. The agency can also screen applicants for employers using assessment software to ensure employees have the skills needed to perform their jobs effectively.

"The Metrix System offers training programs applicable to virtually every business," said Weaver. "Programs can be customized to a specific business or unit within a company. Training is available in areas such as business, communications, Quickbooks, Microsoft Office, lean manufacturing, health care, customer service and more. We can also help to prepare employees for certification preparation in CISCO, CompTIA, Human Resources, Microsoft, Six Sigma, project management and other areas."

A three-month license providing access to all of the Metrix courses costs $99 per employee.

Businesses who are interested in learning more about the Metrix Learning system and other services offered by Oswego County Workforce New York may contact the One Stop Career Center at 200 N. Second St., Fulton, phone 591-9000, or e-mail weaver@oswegocounty.com.

Company founder Vincent Lobdell Sr. and Chirag Patel, director of commercial applications engineering for HealthWay, check an purification component at the Pulaski manufacturing facility. HealthWay is working with Oswego County Workforce New York to provide on-line training opportunities for its staff.

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