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Workforce Challenges Create New Focus at Wisconsin Cheese Industry Conference

MADISON, WI –As a labor shortage looms, the Wisconsin Cheese Industry Conference (WCIC) is set to offer a first-of-its-kind seminar series, focused on the recruitment and retention of the best and brightest workers.

“Low unemployment rates mean fewer applicants for each job opening at cheese plants,” said Judy Keller, Events Director for the Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association, which co-hosts WCIC with the Center for Dairy Research.  “Our workshops will teach you how to successfully compete for the high-quality workers who can help you grow your business.”

The Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association and The Employer Group lead the Workforce Connections seminars on April 12 and 13 at the Alliant Energy Center in Madison, Wisconsin.

On April 12, participants learn the full scope of Wisconsin’s current and future workforce shortage with labor market economist projections through 2030.  Other topics in this fast-paced workshop include new potential sources for employees, successful job advertising strategies, the value of internships, a detailed look at competitive wages by job title and region, and creative benefits policies that help employers hold on to their high-performing workers.  Cheese manufacturing executives are also set to share their best practices in a panel discussion.

On April 13, participants head to human resources boot camp, learning how to hire, fire, and make sure they aren’t breaking any laws in the process.  This workshop also dives deep into health care and immigration policy changes coming in the Trump Administration with a panel of Congressional insiders.  The benefits and value of hiring veterans and disabled workers will be examined.  The workshop wraps with a master class on communication, offered by the Center for Professional and Executive Development at the University of Wisconsin School of Business, focused on engaging employees for a positive, productive workplace.

“People are still the most critical component in the cheesemaking process, and we are here to help our members connect with the workforce they need,” said Keller.

Registration for the Workforce Connections seminar series is limited to 60 participants.  To register, visit www.cheeseconference.org.  Call 608-828-4550 or send an email to Judy Keller at jkeller@wischeesemakers.org for more information.