Just add One: Jefferson County

Long-term campaign with community stakeholders

In late 2011, the Jefferson County Workforce Center collaborated with community stakeholders and business owners to address the challenging economic climate. The discussions led to job growth and the question was raised, “What would happen if each business added just one new employee to their workforce?” With more than 20,000 businesses in Jefferson County, the group applied the economic multiplier and realized the positive impact on economic vitality and the community-at-large. The simple bi-partisan and business-driven approach was applauded by community members, and AddONE was born.

This collective impact initiative began as a grassroots effort to generate jobs. The challenge was for each Jefferson County business to hire just one employee and then ask those businesses to challenge others. While each of the community partners examined their role in supporting AddONE, the Jefferson County Workforce Center tackled its service delivery deficiencies by overhauling its operating practices. By implementing value stream mapping, process engineering, restructuring, and leadership alignment, the Center was able to create a business driven, dynamic approach to workforce development and fully support the AddONE initiative.

Ultimately, the goals of AddONE reduce the unemployment rate and energize the economy. When people are working, they spend money and businesses thrive, and as businesses thrive, additional jobs are added and the unemployment rate goes down. The AddONE campaign currently has 800 jobs pledged in Jefferson County. www.addone.org.

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