If you’re a job seeker, this is for you!
Did you know that there’s an incredible resource right in your backyard that’s ready and willing to help you find a great new job opportunity?
It’s call the Community Career Center and it’s located right here in Naperville.
I had a Q&A session with one of the “development associate” employees there and found out all the great ways that they can help you:
Generally speaking, what does the Community Career Center do?
The mission of the Community Career Center is to “empower job seekers!” We provide job seekers with guidance on subjects ranging from goal-setting and resume writing to networking and interview skills. Basically we try to provide or enhance the skills a job seeker needs to secure an interview and land a job.
Is there any cost for someone to use your services?
We charge $50.00 for one year of unlimited services which include one-on-one sessions, workshops, use of our workstations, etc.We accept cash, check and credit cards. We also offer job clubs/networking groups that are free and available to any job seeker. If a job seeker is currently receiving services from other social welfare agencies such as Loaves & Fishes, Naperville Cares, etc, they can ask that organization to provide them a referral to receive our services at no cost. Many clients like to remain members of the CCC even after they land a job, in order to keep their skills sharp, and keep a toe in the networking pool, so we offer one-year renewals for only $25 when the first year expires.
What kind of tools are available for someone to use?
Our members have access to our workstations, which offer job seekers an “office” to use for their job search, which is often a full-time job in itself. Each workstation features a laptop and phone, and access to copiers, printers, fax, etc. On our laptops, users can access our job bank, in which we post job openings that many of our partners and external organizations send to us on a daily basis. Also available are software tutorials for many common software applications. We also keep a library of business and job-seeking books as well as current and back issues of Crain’s and other business publications.
Do most people utilize one-on-one coaching or are group classes more popular?
Both our workshops and one-on-one services are very popular. Our data suggests that job seekers that utilize our complete range of services are 3 times more likely to land a job than those who attend networking or workshops only.
Can anyone in any industry benefit from your services or do you target a particular type of employee, skill set, or compensation range?
Our job seekers run the gamut. Our members range in age from just out of college into their 60s and even 70s. Upper level executives at the top of the pay scale to those seeking entry level positions.
Can you remember any “success stories” from those who have found jobs that you either got to know well or who you feel the CCC made a big difference for?
A recent success story: Six months ago a new member “Charlie” came to us. He had already been out of work for 2 years and was having no luck at even getting interviews. He started attending our weekly accountability group that offers networking, but also helps people manage their search efforts. As you can imagine, after getting so many rejections he was a bit on the surly side, and was convinced that the problem was with the employers, and not himself. In the accountability group he found compassionate members who had been there, and were there. He started to realize that there were other approaches to finding a job. He started volunteering with local organizations to put some of his free time to good use. After about 4 months, members of the group noticed that he started to “soften” and become more approachable. As this happened, interviews followed. He recently brought in donuts (a traditional offering when a member lands a job) and was so choked up he had trouble getting out the words “I got a job!” This highlights what many members say about the CCC–they come here and find comfort in being around others who are experiencing the same things they are. They get support, coaching, and boosts to their confidence, which end up leading them to employment!
As a non-profit, members can help the Community Career Center keep running. Aside from donations, what types of volunteering or expertise can you utilize if someone wanted to contribute their time to help coach/train your members?
Of course as a non-profit we rely completely on outside funding from variety of outside organizations, the United Way being the largest. We also couldn’t exist without our 50+ volunteers that provide all of the one-on-one counseling appointments for our members. We use volunteers from the business community who can donate their time, usually a few hours every week or every other week. Their expertise ranges from HR, Professional Resume Writers, Hiring Managers, Psychologists, Educational Trainers, and Software Experts. We also host a variety workshops put on by volunteers ranging in topics from LinkedIn-Beyond the Basics, to The Art of Self-Branding, and Dress for Success. We are always interested in talking to people who may be able to add value to our programming through their volunteering. Anyone interested can contact the Community Career Center directly.
If someone was interested in getting started in using your services, what would be the first step for them to take?
Job seekers who are interested in using our services can either stop by during business hours, give us a call, or they can attend an orientation session. We run orientation sessions every Thursday and Saturday mornings, from 9:30-10:30am. No RSVP is required and the orientation sessions are free. Our website is www.communitycareercenter.org and features a printable membership application, as well as a calendar of upcoming workshops and networking events. Non-members can attend our workshops for a $15 fee. Workshop registration for members and non-members can be done through the events link on our website.
Naperville’s Community Career Center
- 1815 W. Diehl Rd, Suite 100, Naperville, IL 60563