In early March, a KRA Career Agent assisted a customer in getting hired at a company where she had worked previously. Is this a job-placement success worth reporting on? For several reasons, which will become clear in this article, the response is a resounding “yes”!
In January, 37-year old Latrina McCrea enrolled in KRA’s Dislocated Worker Program in the Waccamaw Region of South Carolina. She was not short on marketable assets: an Associate’s Degree in General Studies with a focus on Business Administration, an 8-year stint in the Army as a Supply Sergeant and Human Resources Sergeant, and 12 years’ experience with two different Walmart stores. However, due to injuries sustained in an accident, Latrina had to resign her last position with them.
After a successful recovery, Latrina was ready to re-enter the workforce, but found that what she was short on was direction and focus. The depressed economy had drastically changed the job market since 1999, when she was last unemployed. She knew she needed professional assistance, and she knew she would get it at KRA.
After program registration, orientation, and a comprehensive battery of assessments, the next step was the development of her Individual Employment Plan (IEP) with Toshia Jones, KRA Career Agent. The IEP not only provided Latrina a road map for achieving her present goal of fulltime employment, but also prepared her for any future career plans.
In addition to career guidance sessions with Jones, Latrina worked with KRA Business Service Agent, Rusty Gaskins, who guided her through Job-Readiness Workshops in resume development, interviewing do’s and don’ts, networking, effective job-searching techniques, et al, to make her more competitive in today’s tight job market.
Workshop assignments completed, Latrina collaborated with Jones and Gaskins on her job search, and her resume was immediately sent out to several area employers. However, none of the interviews resulted in a job offer; employers have a large pool of candidates to choose from. Jones reported, “During one of our sessions, I encouraged Latrina to apply for a position with the Walmart in Georgetown. After all, she had 12 years’ experience with them, so why not capitalize on that asset? Latrina applied for the job, got an interview, and was as hired fulltime as the Manager of the Crafts and Stationary Department!”
Jones continued, “On March 23rd, Latrina sent me an email that said, ‘Good evening, just wanted to let you know that this is my third week at Walmart, and everything is good!’.” When asked what she thought about Latrina’s future, Jones responded, “At only 37, it’s doubtful that she will retire from Walmart. She’s got a lot going for her, so if and when she decides to move on, I’m confident that KRA has prepared her with the tools to succeed on her own. But, I’ll still be conducting a 3-month follow-up with her, and I expect that everything will still be good.”