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December 9, 2013

Machine Operator Learns New Trade after Losing Job at New Process Gear

John Cannata learned a new trade through the Oswego County Workforce New York One Stop Center after New Process Gear shut down a few years ago. Today he is a machine operator for Huhtamaki.

FULTON - As a long-term employee of New Process Gear, Inc., John Cannata of Central Square never thought he'd be looking for work again. Unfortunately, after the company began shutting down in 2011, John found himself unemployed.

He took advantage of the employment services at the Oswego County Workforce New York One Stop Center in Fulton and learned that Huhtamaki, Inc. was looking for workers. However, John didn't have experience in the food container manufacturing business.

Employment Specialist Chad Whelsky met with John and suggested On-the-Job Training (OJT).

"Huhtamaki understood OJT as a successful program to help defray the cost of training a new employee," said Whelsky. "On-the-Job Training reimburses employers a portion of an OJT participant's wages during an agreed upon training period. The reimbursement helps to offset the cost of training, including decreased productivity of a new trainee, and the trainer's time with the trainee."

Positions must pay at least $10 per hour.

"The benefit to the employee is the achievement of new skills that will make them marketable and potentially self-sufficient doing a job they wouldn't be eligible for without OJT," said Whelsky.

A training agreement was established that allowed John to begin as a general laborer and work towards promotion into other areas. Within several months, he was promoted to machine operator.

"We consider OJT to be a win-win-win situation," said Whelsky. "The employee gets to earn a paycheck while being trained for a job they wouldn't normally be qualified for; the employer gets an employee they can train to their specifications; and the local economy benefits from someone who is working and earning good wages."

Information about this and other services provided to adult and youth job seekers through the Oswego County Workforce New York office is available by visiting the office, located at 200 N. Second St., Fulton, or by calling 315-591-9000.

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