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Updated: December 9, 2019 From the Editor

Workforce development efforts are no joke in a state that needs workers

Everywhere we go in the state, we hear the cry of, “We need workers.”

It was the dominant theme at the roundtables at the six Mainebiz “On the Road” events, which this year were in Portland, Waterville, Ellsworth, Millinocket, Brunswick and Kennebunkport.

When we go out to meet with business leaders, the issue of finding workers comes up.

In our cover story, Senior Writer Laurie Schreiber talks to Nate Wildes at Live + Work in Maine about what it is doing to attract potential workers to the state. She also looks at a wide range of other initiatives — efforts to train dental assistants, aquaculture workers, biotech researchers, shipbuilders and construction workers, among others. As Wildes of Live + Work in Maine says, part of the effort in attracting out-of-staters is getting on their radar when they’re visiting Maine. “Our objective is to get in front of them while they’re here,” Wildes says. “There’s enormous opportunity in Maine.” Laurie’s story starts on Page 16.

Restaurants and hotels are always looking for workers. Now HospitalityMaine is partnering with the state Department of Corrections to develop a workforce as potential employees go into reentry programs. Senior Writer Maureen Milliken talks to a cook at a South Portland restaurant who is making the transition to the private workforce. See Page 20.

Maine’s manufacturing sector has changed tremendously in the past decade, relying on fewer workers to do more technical jobs. Senior Writer Renee Cordes talks to Lanco Integrated, which has 300 workers, about innovative ways it has developed a talent pipeline. She also talks to Hussey Seating, Sterling Rope and J.S. McCarthy Printers on ways they’re recruiting, training and retaining workers. See Page 24.

If you’re hiring, it’s handy to keep in mind Maine’s largest colleges and universities. The list is on Page 34.

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