SANFORD — Looking for a job? Looking for a career change? Looking for employees?
All of these tasks are becoming much easier with the advent of PipelineNC, a one-stop website which acts as a tool for connecting people seeking work with people seeking employees.
PipelineNC (www.pipelinenc.com) mixes functions of other career-related sites with the social networking aspects of websites like Facebook or MySpace. A jobseeker can post his or her resume for employers to see, while employers can view job seekers’ profiles and invite them to apply for available jobs. Users (either employers or job seekers) can also join communities at the website, allowing them to build working relationships with others.
Cindy Casler, director of workforce development at Central Carolina Community College’s Triangle South Workforce Development Board, said the site is a valuable tool for those in the workforce development field as well as those seeking work or a career change.
“The biggest beef people seeking jobs have is that labor market information isn’t in real time,” Casler said recently at a PipelineNC information session for workforce development professionals. “We’re trying to make all of these decisions, and the information we have is old.”
PipelineNC was developed through a $5 million federal Department of Labor grant from the Base Realignment And Closure (BRAC) project. BRAC will see the influx of thousands of new Army workers, their families and other related personnel to Fort Bragg and the surrounding areas, according to Eldon Meacham, an associate vice president at Fayetteville Technical Community College. The site itself was developed by Futures Inc., a Durham-based firm.
“It’s a way of connecting talent to the people who are seeking it,” Meacham said, explaining that the initial genesis of the project was a 2007 initiative to assist wounded soldiers who were returning home from combat and beginning to look for work in the civilian world.
While the project was initially focused on these targets and still retains a strong element toward it, the site is for anyone seeking work in any part of North Carolina.
Meacham said users aren’t required to create a “user profile” to search for jobs at the site, although he encouraged them to do so. Having a user profile allows employers to send “electronic postcards” inviting users to apply for specific jobs or attend job-training events.
In addition to job-seeking functions, PipelineNC allows users to explore other career fields they may be interested in pursuing based on their current job skills and experience. The site is also useful for those preparing to enter the workforce for the first time, such as soon-to-graduate college and high school students.