Computers bring virtual workforce centers to Colorado libraries

The Colorado Department of Labor and Employment has introduced computer work stations called virtual workforce centers at more than 40 participating libraries across Colorado.

The virtual workforce centers will allow library patrons to tap into a wide range of job search resources and information.

“Each virtual workforce center has an interactive screen that makes getting started easy,” said Ellen Golombek, executive director of the CDLE. “We think our customers will find them convenient and user friendly. They will bring most of the services found at our employment offices to job seekers who are increasingly turning to libraries for career exploration and job search activities.”

Jamie Hollier of the Colorado State Library said, “It’s a new world of service delivery for libraries. The notion that libraries are simply a quiet sanctuary for reading is out of date. Libraries offer so much more — and the virtual workforce center is a perfect fit for them. We’re excited to be a part of this statewide project.”

In the months ahead, virtual workforce centers will be available at libraries in both urban and rural areas across Colorado.

Following the launch, the online services and features will be enhanced. Plans are in the works for many virtual workforce centers to offer training sessions for job seekers on such topics as how to create a resumes, how to be successful in a job interview and more.

And in some libraries that are a distance from a workforce center, virtual workforce centers will even be equipped with a camera, microphone and a video line that will allow a job counselor to consult one-on-one with job seekers by appointment.

“The technology is a big step forward,” Golombek said. “It is providing us a cost effective way to extend our outreach to customers across Colorado while also ensuring the personal service that has long been our tradition.”

The virtual workforce centers are being launched as part of Workforce Development Month, an annual statewide focus on critical workforce development issues. During September, workforce centers, led by the Colorado Workforce Development Council and CDLE will provide information and services that unite the needs of employers and employees statewide.