‘PLAN’ning for the future of our workforce

‘PLAN’ning for the future of our workforce

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Almost 5 years ago, urban planning student, Byung Jun Kang, realized there were more videos on the internet about astrophysics than there were about city planning and how it impacts communities.

He decided to tap into the unexplored market, and immediately launched a company to visually educate the public on policies that affect their every day lives. This year alone, he watched his team and revenue grow by 200 per cent, thanks to a key influence: engaged and eager graduates stepping out of Dalhousie’s Community Design program.

“Without the recent grads we’ve hired, our work would not be possible,” says Kang, Co-Founder of PLANifax. “With a knack for advanced technology and communication, combined with their community planning knowledge and research skills, they are the only people who can carry out this job.”

Megan Reddy and Brendan Lamb recently joined PLANifax as Social Policy Researchers and Production Coordinators.

“Working for a small company allows me to branch out and do more than my job requires,” says Reddy. “I get to use my research skills fresh out of university, and further develop my ability to project manage, learn new technologies and consult the public.”

Kang says that without funding support it would have been difficult to make Reddy and Lamb full-time permanent employees.

So PLANifax tapped into the Graduate to Opportunity program (GTO), which helps start-ups, small businesses under 100 full-time employees, non-profits and social enterprises offset the cost of hiring a recent graduate.

Employers receive 25% of a grad’s first year salary (35% if the grad is diverse) and 12.5% of a grad’s second year salary from the Province.

GTO is helping employers across Nova Scotia tap into the unique and evolving skill-sets of younger people.

“Both Brendan and I have the instinct to adapt and innovate,” says Reddy. “Millennials thrive in this digital age and learn to adjust to new communication styles. Our workforce needs to adapt to these fast changes, and its new grads like us who can drive this and keep making Nova Scotia a great place to live.”

“Young people today are looking at new ideas and long-term visions and not just the quick dollar,” says Lamb. “They want to see their efforts influence the business market and the economy as a whole. There is so much to be gained with hiring young people.”

PLANifax plans to expand in the coming years.

To date, over 1,000 recent graduates have been hired across Nova Scotia by employers using GTO funding.

GTO could save you money on the next person you hire. Applications are typically turned around within 5 business days. Learn more at www.novascotia.ca/GTO

< Back to Articles | Topics: Working for you

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