What is the purpose of this resource?
Rapid Response is a pro‐active, business‐focused, and flexible program designed for two major purposes. First, to help growing companies access an available pool of skilled workers from other companies that are downsizing or who have been trained in the skills a company needs to be competitive.
The second is to respond to layoffs and plant closings by quickly coordinating services and providing immediate aid to companies and their affected workers. Rapid Response teams will work with employers and any employee representative(s) to quickly maximize public and private resources to minimize the disruptions on companies, affected workers, and communities that are associated with job loss. Rapid Response can provide customized services on‐site at an affected company, accommodate any work schedules, and assist companies and workers through the painful transitions associated with job loss. The State Rapid Response team also works with the Massachusetts AFL‐CIO Rapid Response Services for Unionized Workers to provide information and assist unions and its workers who are experiencing layoffs or downsizing.
What benefits or services are offered by this resource to employers?
Match businesses that are in transition with similar skill sets.
Communicate directly with employers on their needs and what is necessary to avoid layoffs.
Educate employers on various state and local programs and agencies such as the WorkShare Program, Workforce Training Fund, tax incentives, business loans, growth based systems for manufacturing, employee ownership and succession plans, export opportunity identification, SBA information, etc.
Provide information and assistance if an employer is considering selling a business to a buyer, several buyers, a management group, or employees.
Managing a Layoff
Benefits for employees/dislocated workers include:
On‐site workshops on looking for a job, resume preparation, interviewing, the unemployment insurance process, and other relevant topics.
One‐on‐one career counseling and job search assistance.
Leads to jobs in similar companies that are hiring.
Information on the local labor market; education and training opportunities; health benefits and pensions; access to computers, telephones, and fax machines for job searches; and special services for veterans and adults with disabilities.
Introduction to representatives of other organizations and programs that can help dislocated workers through this transition including, but not limited to, One‐Stop‐Career Centers.
Information on Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) benefits to workers whose jobs are lost due to foreign trade or shifts in production out of the United States if company is certified as trade‐affected.
Benefits for employers include:
Information for companies about any state or federal requirements/laws for notification, including the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) Act, which requires most employers with 100 or more employees to provide 60 day advance notification of plant closings and mass layoffs of employees.
Assistance, with the help of AFL‐CIO, with unions and its workers during layoffs.
Higher productivity and worker morale and lower absenteeism during layoff event due to
Lower unemployment insurance costs as workers are re‐employed more quickly when services are begun prior to layoff.
Decreased likelihood of sabotage or work disruptions.
Media and rumor management. Rapid Response teams understand the often confidential nature of layoffs, and will work with the company to ensure confidentiality at all times.
Better public relations for an employer. Rapid Response teams can also work with the media to highlight services an employer is providing to its workers during a layoff period, which will improve a company’s public image.
Expansion and Growth
Work with businesses to develop growth and expansion plans including:
Linking growing companies to skilled workers from similar/downsized companies.
Providing access to job posting boards, job fairs, and recruitment activities.
Assisting in finding qualified, pre‐screened candidates.
Testing and accessing applicants.
Providing information on the labor market, training grants, and tax credits.
Who is eligible for these benefits and services?
Employers facing a downturn in sales and looking for alternatives to layoffs.
Employers who need to lay off staff and are seeking to make the transition as smooth as possible for the company, affected workers, and the community as a whole.
Employers who are growing quickly and looking to hire skilled workers from companies that are downsizing.
Rapid Response Employer and Employee Services Info
No-cost early intervention!
Contact a Business Services Representative for additional information.