Northeast Ohio’s First-Ever Regional Workforce Development Plan is Official

CLEVELAND--()--The Northeast Ohio Workforce (NOW) Plan was drafted over the past year and was approved on June 30, 2017 by the Ohio Office of Workforce Development. The first-ever regional plan for Northeast Ohio provides eleven focused regional strategies that leverage local strategies in the respective five area Workforce Development Boards. These are designed to prepare resident workers for the demands of the 21st century economy and it is the product of extensive consultations with leaders in business, education, workforce, economic development, organized labor and chief local elected officials from eight counties in Northeast Ohio.

The NOW region was designated as a Workforce Innovation Opportunity Act (WIOA) Region by Ohio’s Governor and is comprised of the eight counties of five Workforce Development Boards representing Lorain, Cuyahoga, Lake, Geauga, Ashtabula, Portage, Summit and Medina. This new collaborative created the Regional WIOA NOW Plan to coordinate workforce policies, services and strategic initiatives across the region. This is important to support and grow the 1.5 million jobs that currently exist in this region by developing the talent pool with the skills needed for these jobs.

The five boards have identified the region's key sectors and industries which are economic drivers in the economy: Healthcare; Manufacturing and Information Technology. Annually, thousands of individuals are placed into jobs in these and other industries as well as receive career technical training through the OhioMeansJobs (OMJ) career centers located in each county and free to anyone in need of assistance.

The Workforce Development Boards representing the eight counties of the NOW region collaborated to develop the following regional strategies:

  • Identify policies and practices to support workforce priorities in the region which could be standardized for our common customers (individuals and businesses);
  • Coordinate their work on industry sectors, career pathways, business engagement, etc. to maximize employer input and to simplify and streamline business outreach;
  • Produce the regional economic analysis to direct strategies and actions based on data;
  • Share and adopt successes and promising practices.

The first-ever regional workforce development plan with the local plans attached is available online in its entirety and can be downloaded by visiting:


For Workforce Development Board of Cleveland - Cuyahoga County
Grace Kilbane, 216-777-8178