The On-the-Job Training (OJT) is a Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) program that is designed to allow employers to hire, train, and retain employees in full-time permanent jobs all while receiving a federally subsidized wage reimbursement. We have staff that will pre-screen the applicants and arrange interviews for potential employees. All of our WIOA participants are WorkKeys assessed and are ready for work. WorkKeys is a series of assessments that measure an employees' real world abilities in several areas of workplace aptitudes. Once you make your hiring selection, an OJT contract will be negotiated that could pay up to 75% of your new employee's hourly wage. If you are interested in OJT, please complete the OJT Pre-Contract Information requested below and one of our professional Business Services Representatives will be in touch with you.
What is the objective of On-the-Job Training?
The mission of the Lower Savannah Council of Governments Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) and Workforce Development Board (WDB) is to build the capacity of the area's workforce to compete in a global economy. Under WIOA, On-the-Job Training means training by an employer that is provided to a full-time paid participant while engaged in productive work. The goal of OJT is to obtain the best training available from employers all while providing assistance to local businesses with wage reimbursements and assisting job seekers obtain employment.
OJT provides payments to employers for training eligible WIOA participants. Payments are based on either 50 or 75 percent of the wage rate of the WIOA participant for the extraordinary costs of providing training. The percentage reimbursed is dependent upon the size of the employer. Small organizations (100 or less employees) receive 75 percent and large organizations (101 or more employees) receive 50 percent reimbursement. OJT is limited in duration as appropriate to the occupation for which the participant is being trained. The length of training takes into account the content of the training, the prior work experience of the participant and the plan for assisting the participant to advance.
How many hours can an OJT employee work a week?
OJT positions are considered full-time positions. In order to be considered for an OJT position, the individual must be able to work at least 30 hours, or more, a week.
What is the source of OJT funds?
The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act is funded by federal tax dollars. WIOA reinvests your federal tax dollars to help upgrade the nation's workforce. Employer reimbursement is contingent upon funding of the LSWDB by the US Department of Labor.
Why should an employer enter into an OJT Agreement?
OJT provides a solution for employers who are challenged with hiring, promoting or retaining employees who lack the specialized knowledge to perform their jobs effectively. Each WIOA eligible individual is pre-screened and assessed in order to insure that they have the ability to learn and perform the job.
What is the employer's responsibility for providing training?
In return for OJT payments, employers provide instruction, equipment, materials, and evaluations according to the OJT Training Outline. Under OJT Agreements to train new hires, employers hire WIOA eligible individuals and train them on-the-job. Employers agree that individuals who successfully engage in OJT will continue to be employed as a regular full-time employee under the same rules as similarly situated employees.
How is training documented?
Employers document training under an OJT Agreement by reporting time and attendance and progress in meeting training objectives according to the training outline. Employers are encouraged to develop and issue a certificate of skill attainment to successful OJT trainees. An OJT representative can assist employers in developing certificates based on job related skills attainment.
Who do I contact for an OJT Agreement?
In the Lower Savannah Workforce Investment Area, OJT is provided in Aiken, Allendale, Bamberg, Barnwell, Calhoun, and Orangeburg Counties through our Business Services Representatives. WIOA Participants for the positions to be filled in OJT are provided through our Service Providers. Information concerning the OJT program is also available through the Lower Savannah SCWorks Centers in Aiken and Orangeburg. See the map on our home page for locations.
Which employees are eligible for OJT?
Anyone in one of the following groups is eligible to be trained under an OJT Agreement:
- Unemployed or underemployed adults over the age of 18
- Workers who have been laid off from another job and are unlikely to return to their previous industry or occupation; and
- Homemakers re-entering the workforce
New employees/trainees MUST NOT:
- Already have the skills listed in the Training Outline to perform the job without the OJT
- Already have been hired, offered employment, or started employment with the Employer before the OJT Agreement is signed
- Be a member of the Employer's immediate family
Can employed workers be trained under an OJT Agreement?
Yes, employed workers can be trained under an OJT Agreement if the training outline shows that the occupational skills to be acquired are an upgrade to the persons existing skills and the following conditions apply:
- The employee is not earning a self-sufficient wage as defined by Lower Savannah Workforce Investment Board (LSWIB);
- All other requirements for OJT Agreements described in these procedures are met; and
- The OJT relates to introduction of new technologies; or, introduction to new production or service procedures; or, upgrading to new jobs that require additional skills, workplace literacy; or, other appropriate purpose identified by the LSWDB.
- The employee will receive a wage increase as a result of a successful completion of OJT.
How is eligibility arranged and how are employees approved for training?
The Lower Savannah SCWorks Center staff determines WIOA eligibility. Frequently, the Centers have an eligible individual to refer when employers have openings under OJT Agreements. Employers may refer applicants to the Lower Savannah SCWorks Center to fill OJT slots and agreements can include upgrading employed workers under certain conditions if an employers' current employees are deemed under-employed. The current employees will need to have their eligibility determined by visiting a SCWorks Center or by arranging for a Workforce Center Representative to visit their business. No OJT payment should be counted on until eligibility is completed, the OJT Agreement is signed, and a training outline including training length is approved.
How is the training length determined?
OJT training length is limited to the time required for an individual to become proficient in the occupation for which they are being trained. The Business Services Representative works with an employer to determine OJT training length. The complexity of the job is benchmarked by a specific vocational preparation code derived from U.S. Department of Labor job classifications as a starting point to determine length of training.
Specific skills needs assessments of eligible individuals and the employers identification of skills needed to perform the job successfully are considered. Length of training may vary among occupations and may be influenced by the abilities and prior experience of each employee.
Where do I find the approved amount of the OJT Agreement?
Each OJT Agreement includes a Training Outline that shows the total amount of OJT payments on the first page of the OJT Agreement authorized by approved position.
How are the OJT Training Payments made to employers?
The total amount of the payment to the Employer for each OJT Trainee is based on up to 50%, or 75%, of the wages paid to eligible employees during the approved training period. Reimbursement to the Employer is made after submission of Reimbursement Invoices to the appropriate Business Services Representative. Reimbursement Invoices may be submitted monthly, quarterly, or after completion of training. Final Reimbursement Invoices must be submitted no later than one month after the completion of training. The Employer agrees not to submit OJT Reimbursement Invoices to the Business Services Rep for training costs that exceed the maximum amount shown in the OJT Contractual Agreement.
Do OJT payments cover training other than learning while working?
Work time includes time for which the trainee is paid and engaged in work-related training (i.e., studying training manuals, attending job related seminars, workshops or one-on-one training). Payments are not made for time not worked but paid under normal circumstances such as vacation, sick leave, holidays not worked, fringe benefits, shift differential, retirement benefits, or any other non-work.
What happens if employers have problems with OJT employees?
Employers should contact the Business Services Representative (BSR). Employers agree to provide information to the BSR about any problems that could lead to termination. Employers agree to help the BSR correct or mediate the matter. Employers should notify the BSR before terminating an OJT trainee for clear violations of company policy, if possible. When advance notice is not possible, employers must notify the BSR within two business days of the dismissal.
What rules apply to employees who are trained under an OJT Agreement?
A person who is trained under an OJT Agreement must have his/her eligibility determined by staff of the Lower Savannah One-Stop Workforce Center before beginning OJT. This requires an interview that includes meeting with Workforce Center professional staff. Staff will gather information from the individual to determine eligibility for the WIOA program and assess the person's need for and ability to complete training. Staff will complete the WIOA registration process and refer the individual to a Case Manager at the Service Provider level. OJT Participants are required to stay in contact with their Case Manager until they have finished the program.
What if the employee gets hurt on the job?
All federal and state health and safety standards apply to working conditions of individuals trained under an OJT Agreement. Individuals trained under OJT are employees and are entitled to the same working conditions, benefits, and rights as similarly employed workers.