Ontario Newsroom

Tackling Skills Gaps with Innovative Training in Perth County

Archived News Release

Tackling Skills Gaps with Innovative Training in Perth County

Province Preparing Jobseekers for Manufacturing Jobs of Tomorrow

Ontario is helping 60 local jobseekers in Perth County develop the skills they need to find jobs in the manufacturing sector.

As the economy and labour market become more technology- and knowledge-based, employers are requiring new skills from employees. The province is investing in the Connect2SKILLS program, which combines a tailored academic training curriculum, developed and delivered by Conestoga College, with on-the-job learning during a work placement with local manufacturers.

Through academic curriculum and on-the-job training, Connect2SKILLS participants will improve their skills and knowledge in areas such as

  • Machine operation and associated processes,
  • Tools and gauges,
  • Forklift safety,
  • Document use and numeracy,
  • Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act,
  • Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System,
  • Health and safety, and
  • Quality control.

The program will help more jobseekers get the training and skills they need to pursue employment and educational goals in a changing economy.

Supporting innovative skills training is part of our plan to create jobs, grow our economy and help people in their everyday lives.

Quick Facts

  • Ontario will provide Four County Labour Market Planning Board with $799,980 over two years to pilot Connect2SKILLS, an employer-focused skills training and employment project for the manufacturing sector.
  • Jobseekers and employers interested in participating in the new Connect2SKILLS project are encouraged to contact the Four County Labour Market Planning Board.
  • The new project in Perth County is one of four SkillsAdvance pilots in Ontario that combine tailored employment supports for jobseekers with industry-specific skills training.

Additional Resources


“Ensuring that our workforce is highly skilled is one of the most important things our government can do for people in Ontario, but government can’t do this alone. Four County Labour Market Planning Board, Conestoga College and their community, employer and municipal partners are setting a great example for innovative cooperation to tackle a labour shortage in the manufacturing sector. This government is proud to support their partnership, which will provide local jobseekers with skills that match exactly what employers in Perth County are looking for.”

Deb Matthews

Deputy Premier and Minister of Advanced Education and Skills Development

“Employers are having challenges finding a skilled workforce and are willing to come to the table to develop a local solution. This important investment will focus on giving technical and soft skills to people looking to become successfully engaged in the workplace. Connect2SKILLS is an employer-driven solution that will help to create a pipeline of work-ready jobseekers, addressing the workforce skills gaps and giving local residents an opportunity to be engaged in a growing manufacturing sector in Perth County.”

Gemma Mendez-Smith

Executive Director, Four County Labour Market Planning Board

Media Contacts



Business and Economy Education and Training Jobs and Employment