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b. 2. Registered Apprenticeship

Describe how the State will incorporate Registered Apprenticeship into its strategy for service design and delivery (e.g., job center staff taking applications and conducting assessments).

Current Narrative:

Idaho’s apprenticeship development team, composed of workforce, apprenticeship, education, and other key partners, was formed in 2016 to support strategies to integrate apprenticeship into statewide workforce systems. The state’s efforts towards advancing Registered Apprenticeship (RA) in Idaho have shown significant positive results as its increased sponsorship levels 71%  since FY2018 and increased the total number of apprentices 31% during that same time frame .

The Idaho Department of Labor’s (IDOL) Registered Apprenticeship Unit is the state’s primary organization which develops, writes, and submits RA standards for registration with USDOL-Office of Apprenticeship. IDOL’s RA team guides sponsors through the Registered Apprenticeship Program (RAP) development process and serves as the only program providing technical assistance to sponsors through the sponsorship life-cycle and RAP expansion. Technical assistance offerings include Registered Apprenticeship Partners Information Database System (RAPIDS, for RA reporting) , IdahoWorks (the state’s workforce management information system), job postings, mentor training, and EEOC. Supporting these efforts are the internally developed resources such as the online Apprenticeship Idaho Sponsor Success Guide, online Mentor Training System, and the innovative Sponsor Journey Map, a nationally recognized best practice by USDOL/Maher & Maher for state apprenticeship agencies which guides partners through the RAP development process.

Partnership and Alignment to Support Workforce System Integration

To strengthen the bond between apprenticeship and workforce development system, Registered Apprenticeship goals are strategically aligned with regional and statewide education and workforce development plans. IDOL is a founder of the newly formed Apprenticeship Idaho Coalition. Together with state’s Workforce Development Council, Idaho Career Technical Education, AFL-CIO, Idaho Business for Education, Idaho Division of Vocational Rehabilitation, and Idaho Department of Corrections, the coalition connects across individual grants to support overall system expansion. Coalition leaders work collaboratively to achieve increased growth, development, modernization, and diversification of RAPs across Idaho. Meeting biweekly, the coalition hosts training and technical assistance events for employers, sponsors, and related-training instruction (RTI) providers across the state.

As recipients of three distinct apprenticeship grants, IDOL plans to continue the state’s focus on innovating and modernizing its RAP systems through expansion and development of the following projects:

  • Increase Career Ladders in the Most In-Demand Occupations in Need of Skilled Labor –Challenged with needing additional support in creating RAPs for the lowest skilled workers, ApprenticeshipIdaho plans to create pre-set and customizable career ladder/career lattice models to help employers with the most in-demand occupations
  • Develop a quality framework for Pre-Apprenticeship Programs leading to RAPs. – Research and design of a Pre-Apprenticeship Program, including curriculum development in areas of highest industry need, development a directory of Pre-Apprenticeship Programs and providers, and the potential development of a certification process.
  • Diversity, Equity & Inclusion – A designated team placed strategically throughout the community, working alongside and embedded within organizations and state agencies representing under-represented populations. The team will liaise with employers to expand RAP opportunities and create Individualized Resource Teams (IRTs) to facilitate continued RAP development and talent pipeline connections.
  • Public Sector Apprenticeships – A team of public agency representatives dedicated to the development of Registered Apprenticeship programs across state agencies.
  • “Ready to Go” RAPs with Online Customization System – An online system will allow employers to choose the work process and RTI provider/outline per RAP, providing for customization when necessary.
  • Career Pathway Match-Making System – This helps users create a pathway of existing options, from job shadowing, internship, pre-apprenticeship, and leading to RA within that career choice.
  • Third Party Credential Search – A data system to house all apprentice certifications as they progress through related certifications, pre-apprenticeship and RA certifications.
  • K-12 National Apprenticeship Week curriculum – Development of lesson plans, for teachers and counselors,  to use for discussion and awareness of the different opportunities to career development and career readiness.
  • Automate current Talent Pipeline Referral System to reduce lag time for apprentices qualified for inter-agency supportive services.
  • Unify Information Technology (IT) Systems - Unify all state agencies working on RA projects under one single CRM system that monitors interactions with employers and allows partners to track the progress of RAPs throughout the development process. Integrating the current talent-pipeline referral system and providing more real-time follow-through with automated data triggering is also a proposed project outcome

Moving away from working a grant via a siloed approach  has helped to improve the state’s focus on integrating, business outreach and assistance with its partners across Idaho, ensuring identification and development of career pathways and industry-recognized credentials with each new RA developed. The state’s workforce development system prioritized supporting its key industries’ growth and technological capabilities through the establishment of a trained workforce throughout Idaho. Through the cross training of workforce, education, community and business sectors, ApprenticeshipIdaho partners serve to improve the state’s RA capacity, with many individual and employer customers benefitting from this “tag-teaming” of resources, which spur its continued success.