The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania has created the opportunity
for employers to train new and existing employees through the WEDnetPA program.
Advanced Technology training and Essential Skills training are available to qualified in-state businesses and out-of-state companies relocating to the economic-friendly business climate of Pennsylvania – with funding accessed through WEDnetPA and made available by the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED).
Through the program, your company can benefit from a wide range of training that will put your employees on the path to higher performance.
The WEDnetPA program was created to empower Pennsylvania companies by developing employee skills. Employers always have the freedom to seek out the training best-suited for their needs. Training can be provided by:
- Any third-party training provider
- The company’s own in-house staff
- Any one of the WEDnetPA partners
Training can also be taken online. Online training saves employers time and money and offers you more training options. Employees can train at their convenience – at work, at home or on the road.
More than 8,500 unique third-party training providers have been chosen and utilized by Pennsylvania businesses taking advantage of the WEDnetPA program – further emphasizing that companies have many options when it comes to choosing training providers. By exercising this freedom of choice, companies are certain to get the most appropriate and most effective training available.
This represents an overview of the program guidelines. Please consult a WEDnetPA partner for additional information and clarification of requirements. Each employer must sign a Memorandum of Agreement confirming that all of the following requirements will be met, subject to verification.
Complete program guidelines are available to download and print
- Employees must be residents of Pennsylvania and employed in Pennsylvania.
- Employees must earn at least 150% of current federal minimum wage, excluding benefits.
- Trainees must be permanent full-time employees and eligible for full-time benefits.
- Employers must be located in Pennsylvania.
- Point-of-sale retail businesses, gaming establishments, training vendors, employment agencies, government agencies, government-owned facilities, education and nonprofit entities are not eligible.
- Employers with a high turnover rate may be declared ineligible.
- Participation is limited to two years in a row and three out of the past five years.
- Companies and/or locations sharing the same FEIN will be considered as one company for eligibility purposes. However, different locations must apply separately.
Flexibility, Accountability & Convenience
- The program supports both instructor-led and online courses which can be taken on-site at the company, from a training provider or at any convenient location.
- Companies may select the training providers of their choice.
- Company in-house training is permitted.
- Only WEDnetPA partners are qualified to process applications, contracts and invoices.
- Companies have up to 45 days to invoice for completed training.
ESSENTIAL SKILLS TRAINING
Designed to benefit employee and employers, Essential Skills training must be skill-building…directly impacting the skills required for the employee’s job.
A simple set of additional qualifications determine which companies and employees are eligible to receive Essential Skills training.
- Employees must be frontline employees or first-level supervisors.
- Employees with decision-making responsibilities (budgeting, policy, etc.) or employees who supervise other supervisors are not eligible.
- Employers must be manufacturing or technology-based businesses including biotech and environmental-tech companies. A technology-based business is defined as one that produces or provides a technology product or service.
- Employers may apply for funding for any number of eligible employees up to $450 per employee and $75,000 per fiscal year (7/1 to 6/30).
ADVANCED TECHNOLOGY TRAINING
Designed to benefit employees and employers, Advanced Technology training includes the teaching of a variety of high-tech skills needed to be successful in the workplace.
- All employees are eligible for Advanced Technology training, however, the training must be directly related to the employee’s scope of work.
- Employers may apply for funding for any number of eligible employees up to $850 per employee and $50,000 per fiscal year (7/1 to 6/30).
- Introductory courses are not eligible. MS Office software training does not qualify as Advanced Technology training, but is eligible under Essential Skills training.
Companies begin the process by submitting an inquiry. An inquiry provides the WEDnetPA partner with company information to determine company eligibility.
- If your company has NEVER had a WEDnetPA grant, visit the WEDnetPA website to complete an Inquiry.
- If your company has applied for WEDnetPA grants in the past, then you will log into ISAAC (Information Sharing, Administration and Analysis Center). Don’t know your login information? Click on “forgot username” or “forgot password” and they will be emailed to you. If you have never used ISAAC, contact CJ Ezell, WEDnetPA Partner, at 717-477-1123 x3381 to set up your user information. Once you are able to log into ISAAC, you will complete the inquiry on your dashboard.
The application process begins once your inquiry has been reviewed and approved by the WEDnetPA partner. The application is a simple three-step process.
- Read and sign the MOA (Memorandum of Agreement) using either electronic signature or print, sign and upload the signature page.
- Complete the training plan.
- Review the application information and submit.
- WEDnetPA is funded by the Department of Community and Economic Development through the PA First Initiative.
- Since its inception in 1999, WEDnetPA has assisted more than 17,000 companies and helped train more than 1,000,000 workers.
- WEDnetPA partners provide expert support to help companies assess their training needs, develop training plans and apply for funding – all at no cost to the companies.
- Approximately 90%of all state funds allocated to WEDnetPA have gone directly to pay for employee training.
- In FY 12-13, WEDnetPA made an investment in Pennsylvania’s workforce of $7.2 million. This leveraged another $10.8 million of private sector investment.
- On average, companies provide a 1.5 to 1 cash match for every WEDnetPA dollar invested in training. Including in-kind contributions, the match increases to 4 to 1.
- According to a study by the Department of Labor and Industry’s Center for Workforce Information Analysis, companies experience an 86% retention rate among employees trained through WEDnetPA and those employees increase their wages an average of 10% within the first year.
- Approximately 90% of WEDnetPA funds are invested in companies in the Commonwealth’s high-priority industry clusters:
○ Advanced Materials and Diversified Manufacturing
○ Agriculture and Food Production
○ Building and Construction
○ Business and Financial Services
○ Information and Communication Services
○ Life Sciences
○ Logistics and Transportation
○ Lumber, Wood and Paper
For assistance or for more information about WEDnetPA please contact:
CJ Ezell, WEDnetPA Partner, at 717-477-1123 x 3381 or firstname.lastname@example.org