Free online courses focused in fields such as IT, finance, business administration
Ontario is hoping to help 100,000 workers gain the skills they need to find good jobs and restart their careers.
The province is investing $5.8 million to provide free online courses focused on building the skills most in demand by employers in fields such as information technology, finance and business administration.
“As our province safely and steadily reopens, we’re seeing strong demand for qualified workers across many industries,” says Monte McNaughton, minister of labour, training and skills development. “There are more than 250,000 jobs in Ontario going unfilled today. Many hardworking people are eager to start these new, well-paying and purpose-driven careers. Through this partnership with LinkedIn, we’ve identified the top skills employers are looking for and we’re offering free online training to help workers and their families get back on their feet.”
The funding is part of the government’s $115-million Skills Development Fund to address challenges to hiring, training and retraining workers because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Through the funding, workers will have access to over 17,000 courses, including videos taught by global industry experts. Employment Ontario career experts will coach each worker on which courses match their needs and personal career goals. There are also 2,100 in-demand courses offered in French, German, Japanese, Spanish, Mandarin and Portuguese.
The free online training is available until March 31, 2022 through LinkedIn. To apply, workers can contact their local employment service provider, or visit LinkedIn to sign up.
“We are excited to facilitate economic growth in Ontario through our learning, labour market insights, and recruiting products,” says Mark Lobosco, vice president of LinkedIn Talent Solutions. “Together, we can create more equal access to opportunity through learning and skills and help prepare Ontarians for the jobs of today and tomorrow.”
The partnership will also provide employment services organizations with access to local labour market data to ensure workers are building skills reflected in local job postings. Employment service providers will also be able to use the platform’s employer outreach tools to build relationships with local employers to connect workers with job placements more quickly, according to the government.
Ontario's unemployment rate was 8.4 per cent in June 2021.
In March, Ontario announced it is investing $47 million in apprenticeship programs through 2021-22. Ontario also previously invested $21 million in pre-apprenticeship training programs to help those facing employment barriers to start careers in the skilled trades