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  • Put your business front and center by sponsoring a Chamber event, annual program, or digital media.

    New network building events in 2022 include the Battle of the Business Bowling Tournament and the Local Lunch for restaurants.  BE PRO BE PROUD and Connecting Educators in Industry are focused on building the workforce pipeline for our community.  Also new this year are two annual program sponsorships, the Governmental Affairs Committee, and the Chamber Ambassadors, both focused on advocacy for a strong, business friendly climate in our community, county, and state. 

    Or promote your business utilizing the Chamber website, which received more than 145,000 visits in 2021. And don't forget the long running favorites; the Annual Meeting & Business Expo, the Golf Classic, Business After Hours, and the Arkansas Scholars Award Ceremony.




  • Workforce Program Manager

    Posted: 01/12/2024

    Western Arkansas Planning & Development District (WAPDD) is actively searching for a Workforce Program Manager to join our organization. 
    Founded in 1966, WAPDD provides a variety of resources, services, and information to our region. Serving six counties (Crawford, Franklin, Logan, Polk, Scott, and Sebastian), we assist area leaders and residents in areas such as community, economic, and workforce development as well as transportation planning, 911 services, geographic information systems, floodplain management, and much more.
    WAPDD seeks an energetic, community-minded leader to fill the role of Workforce Program Manager that will play a critical role in the management of our Workforce Department and Team. 
    The Western Arkansas workforce development system strives to create a workforce that is well educated, skilled, and supported to ensure that the long-term labor needs of our region’s business community are met and exceeded. A strong workforce development system also strengthens Arkansas’s economy- keeping us competitive in the global marketplace. To successfully carry out this mission, workforce system partners and sector industry partners collaborate to utilize job market data to align the services we provide to improve the long-term employability of citizens within the Western Arkansas Workforce Development Area (WAWDA). 

    The position of Workforce Program Manager is focused on employment and training services, creative networking, team collaboration, and ensuring program compliance and performance.  This position is responsible for continually enhancing and broadening the reach of workforce development programs aimed at enriching people’s lives and the economic strength of the Western Arkansas region.  Position duties are supervision of workforce program staff that provides client services as well as tasks such as administrative duties, organizing schedules, delegating duties, monitoring and evaluating employee performance, and leading and motivating team members. This position is also responsible for collaborating and developing improvement plans, monitoring progress and performance measures, supporting and delivering successful program objectives, and productively reaching partners.  Exceptional leadership, communication and interpersonal skills are required.  The Workforce Program Manager exemplifies continuous improvement and has an intuition for recognizing ways to improve all aspects of our mission and making that happen directly through teamwork.
    This position reports to the Executive Director at WAPDD.  

    • Develop a strong understanding of the workforce development system and its partners to produce efficient, cost-effective, and successful processes that meet the outreach and performance goals outlined within the Western Arkansas Regional and Local Plan. 
    • Support the Director of Workforce Development by providing oversight and assistance on assigned projects, partnering on planning initiatives and creating goals to reach partners and participants as well as meeting performance measures. 
    • Work in partnership with the Executive Director to plan and supervise daily operational aspects of the workforce program. 
    • Assist in the correction, coordination, and submission of information and materials to Arkansas Division of Workforce Services. 
    • Support the development, implementation, and continuous evaluation of efforts specific to most vulnerable and disproportionately represented populations in the Western Arkansas Workforce System.
    • Initiate engagement with partners to create workforce strategies and opportunities for positive change for justice involved individuals reentering our community. 
    • Support and deliver successful program objectives for various initiatives, specifically career pathway development through western Arkansas.
    • Research best practices of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) and related programs nationally to develop standards to implement regionally with the assistance of the Director of Workforce Development. 
    • Motivate small project teams to develop, execute and complete assignments and operational strategies. 
    • Provide leadership, technical assistance, communication and expert guidance to program staff. 
    • Organize team roles and evaluate employee performance, reviews and assessments.
    • Document operational tasks and report to upper-level management.
    • Assist with workforce employee onboarding and training programs.
    • Motivate, coach and improve employees work performance and goal attainment of program goals. 
    • Represent the local workforce area at program focused meetings both at the local, state and federal level.
    • Represent the local workforce area at non-program focused meetings and initiatives with community-based partners and organizations. 
    • Evaluate program numbers and performance to ensure compliance and report progress to the Executive Director and Director of Workforce Development. 
    • Remain current on all WIOA state and federal laws and regulations.
    ·      Examine case files and notes to ensure compliance with WIOA regulations. 
    ·      Commit to continuous improvement and lifelong learning by being informed of emerging trends, best practices, and new developments in the profession as well as attending 
                relevant workshops, classes, seminars and professional conferences. 
    ·      Other duties as assigned.

    ·      3 years experienced in program/project management; Bachelor’s degree; or equivalent combination of education and experience. 
    ·      Excellent oral and written communication skills.
    ·      Highly motivated and actively contributes to a collaborative environment that engages and challenges WAPDD team members in meeting organizational and personal goals.
    ·      Skilled in planning and prioritizing work effectively, working independently and with minimal supervision. 
    ·      Leadership experience with ability to lead, motivate and delegate within the team. 
    ·      Experienced in effectively operating standard office equipment including computer, phone, text, apps, and software such as Microsoft Office.  Including but not limited to the creation and editing of word documents, spreadsheets, and presentations.
    ·      Strong interpersonal skills and ability to work collaboratively and positively with colleagues and partners. 
    ·      Awareness of vulnerable populations and a demonstrated ability to interact effectively with people from different cultures and experiences. 

    ·      Demonstrated experience in the development and maintenance of professional partnerships.
    ·      Ability to gather, analyze, and interpret data to present ideas, conclusions, and factual data in clear and concise written and oral formats. 
    ·      Experience with public administration, workforce development, community development and/or economic development.

    To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential function satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are in addition to the essential functions and required skills: 
    ·      Valid Driver’s License.
    ·      Properly licensed and insured automobile, available for use during work hours.
    ·      The employee is required to be present in the workplace on a regular and reliable basis. 
    ·      Normal work hours are M-F 8:00 am to 4:30 pm; however, occasional evening and/or weekend assignments may occur. 
    ·      Some out of state travel for conferences and meetings may occur.  

    Work is performed at the WAPDD office, Fort Smith Workforce Center, and as needed at various sites throughout the six-county area.
    This is an exempt, salaried position. Salary range is $45,000 to $55,000 with a comprehensive benefits package including paid time off, insurance coverage, retirement benefits and professional development opportunities. Starting salary will be negotiated based on knowledge and experience. 

    To apply, please submit your cover letter and resume with the required elements to careers@wapdd.org. Position open until filled.  
    Program Manager Application Checklist
    The following items must be addressed in your cover letter and resume to be considered for the position of Workforce Program Manager:
    ·      Name (first, middle initial, last), phone number, and email address
    ·      Experience applicable to any essential functions of this position as listed above
    ·      Ability to perform the requirements of this position
    ·      Most recent four years of work history
    ·      A list of all project management related education and experience, i.e. degrees, certificates, and/or professional licensures
    ·      A list of three references with contact information and relationship