Fall 2008 |
Reinvesting in an area isn´t only about soliciting financial
resources or constructing new buildings; investing in human capital is as
vital to a community´s success. And the North Omaha Development Project
(NODP) is doing just that.
The implementation of the North Omaha Customer Service Training Program
plans to alleviate workforce shortages while providing sustainable income to
unemployed and underemployed residents of North Omaha. The program—the
first from the NODP Workforce Taskforce vice chaired by MCC´s vice
president of external relations—will identify, train and prepare up to
50 workers for entry into the job marketplace.
So how does this investment in people happen? Blue Cross Blue Shield of
Nebraska and Mutual of Omaha, the program´s corporate partners,
identified a need for customer service employees. Goodwill Industries was
selected to recruit and support participants while Metropolitan Community
College will coordinate and facilitate the five-month training. Specifically,
applicants were recruited from within the boundaries of the NODP, including
zip codes 68104, 68110, 68111, 68112 and 68152. Applications were accepted for
a one-month window in the summer, and the training program begins Sept. 8 for
the accepted applicants.
"Students will be introduced to an insurance-specific customer service
operation where they can gain experience in analyzing customer interactions to
determine appropriate responses to all types of customer needs and requests.
In addition, the participants will be exposed to call center job shadowing,
classroom simulated practice and advanced projects to ensure readiness for
on-site training in a call center environment," said Randy Schmailzl,
Metropolitan Community College interim president.
Once the coursework is successfully completed, the hiring process for both
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Nebraska and Mutual of Omaha will begin. For more
information on the North Omaha Customer Service Training Program and other
initiatives of the North Omaha Development Project, visit