Technology continues to advance in workplaces across all industries. Companies must continuously upskill their staff in order to keep pace. The Going PRO Talent Fund (GPTF) has played a substantial role in making workplace training possible and helping employers remain competitive. Since 2014, the state has been allocating grant awards to employers to train new hires and existing employees. These funds have generated a strong return on investment.

The Going PRO Talent Fund was cut from Michigan’s 2020 budget due to differing budget priorities. As a result, employees like Shelby Baumann, an employee at Fogg Filler in Holland, MI, might not be able to gain the skills necessary to move up in within a company, increase earnings and get satisfaction from their work.

Why workplace training matters

Recipient of workplace training, Shelby at Fogg FillerBaumann is one of thousands of Michigan workers who have benefited from GPTF. “[Fogg Filler] was a great place with lots of good people, but I just kind of felt stuck, and I wasn’t really enjoying going to work anymore,” said Baumann. Training allowed her to move from what felt like a dead-end job to a career path at Fogg Filler. This has been transformative, giving her financial stability and a sense of optimism about her future.

“It just makes you feel good in life and builds your confidence that you can conquer a lot of things.” -Shelby Baumann

Going PRO grant awards are competitive and are funded based on demonstrated need and the merits of the workplace training plans. Employers are required to invest in the program, and the training must lead to a transferable, industry-recognized credential. In other words, the program is building a skilled workforce that can address the skills gap that exists across the state.

Read more about how Going PRO funds are changing lives like Shelby’s and boosting West Michigan’s economy.