Madison, Wisc., and Sunnyvale, Calif., March 23, 2021 –
The Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development (DWD) today
announced it is launching a Virtual Career Center (VCC), built on
Google Cloud. The VCC will connect Wisconsinites to career
services, relevant job opportunities and dramatically expand
access to key resources across the state, via an innovative,
data-driven, and easy-to-navigate online platform.
This $2.9-million project brings together Wisconsin government
and industry-leading technology providers to harness the power of
cloud platforms to support candidates’ job searches, helping
connect the state’s workforce with pathways to available career
opportunities. Wisconsin will become one of the first states in
the country to leverage Google Cloud technology to help people get
back to work and support economic recovery statewide. DWD plans to
use federal funding to pay for the new project.
"Since last March, hundreds of thousands of Wisconsinites have
filed for unemployment and, yet, many employers are still
struggling to fill the positions necessary to grow and expand
their operations," Secretary-designee Amy Pechacek, Wisconsin DWD,
said. "Many of the workers impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic were
already some of the state’s most vulnerable. For our economy to
bounce back, we need to rapidly and successfully connect workers
with the in-demand jobs of our state that build on their existing
skills and experience and that offer the wages and benefits
necessary to support their families and invest in their
futures.This new online platform will build on our current online
services and complement our staff's existing work at our local job
centers, in public libraries, and around local communities in our
mobile job center. Now, more than ever, we are committed to
meeting people where they are and providing the services they need
to succeed in Wisconsin."
The VCC will give Wisconsinites remote access to an array of
resources to support their job searches, including training
resources, job market data, and career counseling. As part of the
VCC, DWD is developing a "career bot" to help Wisconsin workers
explore successful career paths and new interest areas, paired
with proven, effective opportunities to build new skills and find
the help and support they need.The VCC is designed to support
economic recovery by reskilling residents for jobs that match
current economic landscape and employer requirements.
Many states have struggled during the pandemic to provide
unemployment benefits, career resources, and more -- due to
outdated or hard-to-use technology," said Mike Daniels, vice
president of Global Public Sector, Google Cloud. "Wisconsin has
taken an innovative approach to these problems, and through
integrated experiences provided by our technology, we hope job
seekers across the state can land back on their feet quickly."
Wisconsin's VCC will be powered by a range of Google Cloud
technologies -- such as Google Workspace, including Google Meet,
that will allow job seekers to schedule video meetings with career
coaches, job recruiters, and potential employers. Additionally,
the Google Job Search API is an AI-powered job discovery tool,
powered by Google Cloud, that will allow jobseekers to explore
career opportunities best suited to their skills and interests.
The VCC application interface will be built in partnership with
Certain VCC features will launch throughout the spring and
summer, with the full project completed by late 2021.