Workforce Development

Financial and Technical Assistance for Employers

Pennsylvania’s workforce is characterized by a special combination of education, experience, and curiosity, and is driven by our legendary can-do spirit. As a result, new technology is being discovered and developed every day. It’s in our DNA. Pennsylvanians built this nation, and that spirit and drive — and our state’s founding principles of openness and tolerance — continue to push their work and abilities to new heights.

To ensure Pennsylvania’s businesses develop and keep the best talent, the state offers locally-based technical assistance and workforce development grants.

Local Employer Assistance
Industrial Resource Centers (IRCs)
Industrial Resource Centers (IRCs)

The Manufacturing PA Industrial Resource Centers (IRCs) are a DCED-funded statewide network of regional organizations who introduce small and medium-sized manufacturers to new business processes and the latest technologies, innovative techniques, and industry best practices they need to grow and remain competitive. As part of their mission, the IRCs offer workforce development consultation services for manufacturers. Find your nearest center today to start the conversation and learn more about their services on our #PAProud blog.

Industry Partnerships (IPs)

Industry Partnerships (IPs) are regional partnerships of businesses in a shared labor market who work with economic development, education, workforce development, and community organizations to address the overall competitiveness needs of the industry. You can join your local IP to improve networking, collaborate with others in your industry, and gain access to specific industry resources in your area. As a business leader, you will help determine the partnership’s priorities and drive high-impact, sustainable initiatives that are tailored to the business communities’ needs. To learn more about IPs in Pennsylvania, contact Shuana Davis, Director for Partnership Development of the State Workforce Development Board, at 717.571.4806.

Workforce Grants

The Workforce & Economic Development Network of Pennsylvania (WEDnetPA) is a DCED-funded workforce training program that helps employers upgrade the skills, knowledge, and effectiveness of their current employees. This is especially valuable for employers seeking to empower their existing employees and give them the right skills to perform at a higher level and fill gaps in the workforce. To learn more about the success that the WEDnetPA training program has had, visit our #PAProud blog.

Pre-Apprenticeship and Apprenticeship Grant Program
Apprenticeship Grant Program

The Pre-Apprentice and Apprenticeship Grant Program (Apprenticeship Program) is a DCED-funded program and can be used to help cover the costs of the formal instruction or classroom requirements associated with registered apprenticeships. To qualify, businesses must register their apprenticeship program with the PA Department of Labor & Industry’s Apprenticeship and Training Office.

Manufacturing PA Training-to-Career Grant Program

Part of Governor Wolf’s Manufacturing PA Initiative, the Training-to-Career Grant program supports new and innovative training or awareness programs that focus on developing the skillsets for entry-level applicants to better meet the needs of manufacturers with job openings or build awareness of the career opportunities in the manufacturing industry. To qualify, these training programs must be developed with direct input by two or more partnering manufacturers and specifically address the skills missing in entry-level applicants for existing or near-future open positions. Consequently, it is anticipated that those who complete training will successfully obtain employment.

PA Workforce

In addition to providing workforce development programs for businesses, Pennsylvania also offers a wealth of resources to support students, jobseekers, and workers. PAsmart, a multi-pronged workforce initiative, connects Pennsylvanians with the information they need to succeed in our evolving economy. One way it accomplishes this is through its digital presence at — the go-to resource to learn about new career opportunities, skills and training programs, and helpful resources for getting the jobs of today and learning the skills of tomorrow. Visit the PAsmart website to work smart and live happy in Pennsylvania.

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