The Southwest Initiative Employer Resource Network® (ERN®) helps companies in supporting working families while driving business growth.
This innovative approach to workforce development is the first of its kind in Minnesota.
Southwest Initiative Foundation is using a model developed in Michigan in 2007 called Employer Resource Network® USA. This model combines job retention services, work supports, education and training. It assists employees in successfully navigating work and personal situations and employers in developing and retaining talent. The ERN® also works with community service providers like social service agencies, workforce development groups, chambers of commerce, economic development groups and community and technical colleges or other training institutions.
How It Works
Employer Resource Network® member companies pool their resources to fund an on-site network Success Coach who works directly with employees as a coach, advocate and connector. Nationwide, member companies average a 500 percent return on their investment based on job turnover rates, the cost of skill building and training and increased productivity.
The Success Coach assists with a wide range of challenges and opportunities—both work-related and personal, which can include:
- Accessing child care
- Dealing with financial pressures
- Budgeting, banking or building a credit score
- Affordable housing options
- Transportation and car repairs
- Applying for other programs
- Locating counseling
- Managing conflicts with family/co-workers
- Training, education or career advancement
Together, the Success Coach and employees set goals, access resources and explore supports that will help them excel at work and beyond.
Southwest Initiative Employer Resource Network® member companies include:
Bethesda – with locations in Willmar, Olivia and New London
Minnesota Rubber and Plastics, now part of Trelleborg
Towmaster in Litchfield
Jackpot Junction Casino & Hotel, part of the Lower Sioux Indian Community
Jonti-Craft in Wabasso
Special thanks to the Otto Bremer Trust for its support in launching the Southwest Initiative Employer Resource Network®.
The Otto Bremer Trust was created in 1944 by business and community leader Otto Bremer and is committed to supporting a better quality of life for residents of Minnesota, Montana, North Dakota and Wisconsin.