CareerSource Flagler Volusia

CareerSource Flagler Volusia Blog

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Importance of responding to surveys

Getting feedback from customers is a social exchange; one in which the individuals providing information are motivated by some kind of reward. For this blog post we thought it would be appropriate to explain your rewards when you complete our surveys. (Also, let this article implicitly help you with your own surveying efforts.)

We don’t know what we don’t know. The first and most obvious benefit is that your feedback can help us improve the service we provide you. There may be little things – or huge things – we can change to our services, processes, forms, etc. to make your life better. But we won’t know what to change unless you tell us.

The second benefit gained is that your feedback goes straight to the decision makers at CareerSourceFV – no filters. Your input is collected by managers and presented directly to the Board of Directors. This means that your responses are heard, and if needed, acted upon.

Beyond these benefits we do our best to make your survey-taking experience as simple and comfortable as possible. We accomplish this by:

  1. Telling you ahead of time about the purpose of the survey and its benefits – kind of like we are doing now.
  2. Reducing the complication of the survey and minimizing the time it takes to complete it. Typically our online surveys take less than 2-3 minutes to complete.
  3. Following up with you for comments or questions.

Next time you see one of our surveys, take a short moment, 2-3 minutes, to give us feedback. You and your organization will be better off if you do!

Manufacturing in our region, really?

Saying “we make it here” is an understatement. For a relatively small community, we manufacture a lot. The interesting thing is that we are generally unaware of our manufacturing power. I’ll be the first to admit that I am continuously surprised to learn about some of the different things that we make here.

Over the years we have heard about an exodus of manufacturing companies. Many of which have sought increased competitiveness through lower operating costs in other countries. But despite this trend, our region has experienced a growth in manufacturing. Take for instance: ship and boat building, nonmetallic mineral products, and computer and electronic products. These are sectors that are growing in our region at an incredible pace – in some instances as high as 67%.

Here are five reasons why we should keep an eye on local manufacturing:

1. For every $1.00 spent in manufacturing, another $1.40 is added to the economy. That is the highest multiplier effect of any economic sector.

2. In 2015, the average manufacturing worker in Flagler and Volusia counties earned $60,534 annually, including benefits. The average worker in all industries earned $43,534. Looking specifically at wages, the average manufacturing worker earned $23.17 per hour, according to the latest figures, not including benefits.

3. Manufacturers have experienced tremendous growth over the past few decades, making them more “lean” and helping them become more competitive globally. Output per hour for all workers in the manufacturing sector has increased by more than 2.5 times since 1987. In contrast, productivity is roughly 1.7 times greater for all nonfarm businesses. Note that durable goods manufacturers have seen even greater growth, almost tripling their labor productivity over that timeframe.

4. Over the next decade, nearly 11,000 manufacturing jobs will likely be needed in Flagler and Volusia counties, and 46% are expected to go unfilled due to the skills gap. Moreover, according to a recent report, 80 percent of manufacturers report a moderate or serious shortage of qualified applicants for skilled and highly skilled production positions.

5. Exports support higher-paying jobs for an increasingly educated and diverse workforce. Jobs supported by exports pay, on average, 18 percent more than other jobs. Employees in the most trade-intensive industries earn an average compensation of nearly $72,000, or 56 percent more than those in manufacturing companies that were less engaged in trade. What’s great is that we have a significant pool of international business students in the area (think of our local universities) who are willing to stay and work for manufacturing firms developing new foreign markets.

Do we have the needed talent in our community?

If you are like me, you probably devote time to think about the future of this community. And when you do, you probably envision where we’ll be in the next 2, 5, or perhaps even 10 years. I know I do!

But, as we all know the future – a bright one – is not something that magically happens. The future unfolds based on what we do today. Our current actions will guide us to a specific kind of future.

I raise this comment about the future, because recently I’ve heard businesses express a feeling of powerlessness when they can’t find qualified talent in the region. Consequently, the purpose of today’s blog is to give you – and all of those businesses – a tool to help take control of your future.

Now you can do something about your future talent pipeline!

Think about the fact that by the year 2020 about half of the workforce will consist of the next generation: the kids who are currently enrolled in high school. Learning more about this group might prove beneficial to your business. Aren’t you interested in meeting your future workforce today? I am.

Together with the Flagler and Volusia school systems we’ve developed a portal to help your business connect with local schools. This portal will give your business the chance to create a pipeline of talent: High school students will get a glimpse of career opportunities available in your industry and then be inspired to prepare for them. At the same time you will have the opportunity to meet the next generation of workers.

The portal is available at no cost to you.

Through the Career Community Portal you will be able to connect with high school students by offering:

  • Job shadowing opportunities
  • Internships
  • Jobs
  • Mentoring
  • Company tours
  • Classroom presentations
  • Large audience lectures

Your business can offer these opportunities whenever is most convenient and with no recurring obligations.

Ultimately this means you will have an active role in the development of new talent to grow your business.

For more information, please contact:

Bill O'Connor, CareerSourceFV Business Service Representative

Office: (386) 561-9745

Momentum Building In Our Innovation Ecosystem


There’s a movement growing in Daytona Beach. Can you feel it? Our innovation ecosystem has started to life and is picking up pace. Innovation initiatives are sprouting up across the Daytona region. One of the most popular of such initiatives is 1 Million Cups Daytona Beach (1MC). Every Wednesday from 9am to 10am, the Daytona area’s creative community fills Cinematique Theater for 1 Million Cups; a weekly program to help educate, engage and connect local entrepreneurs, innovators, investors and other interested community members. It is free and open to the public. Located at 242 S Beach St., Daytona Beach, FL 32114, free coffee and breakfast snacks are available as well.

“1 Million Cups provides an encouraging, supportive opportunity for the local startup community to openly discuss their business successes and challenges,” said Edith Shelley, Strategic Partnerships & Initiatives with Halifax Health. “It is a celebration of the innovative, entrepreneurial movement in our community. 1 Million Cups assists in connecting the dots of the entrepreneurial ecosystem that exists in Daytona Beach. It’s Educating-Engaging-Energizing.”

Connecting the dots in our local innovation ecosystem leads to tangible benefits for entrepreneurs. For example, a connection made at 1 Million Cups led to a local company developing a patentable product. In addition, several local entrepreneurs have made connections to investors as a result of their 1 Million Cups presentations.

1 Million Cups is based on the notion that entrepreneurs network and discover solutions over a million cups of coffee. 1 Million Cups Daytona Beach launched in November, 2014 in Sweet Marlays’ Coffee Shop and has since expanded to its current location in downtown Daytona.

“Thanks to 1 Million Cups and the hard work of its organizers, local entrepreneurs and startup companies have a venue to showcase their fledgling businesses, share their stories, and dialogue with the community,” said Stephanie Miller, Directory of Technology Transfer and Commercialization at Embry Riddle Aeronautical University. “1MC is shining a much-needed light on the incredible talent and accomplishments of the many startup companies in Daytona Beach and Volusia County.”

By shining a light on local talent, our economy benefits as local companies connect with that talent to form partnerships and even hire employees as they grow.

1 Million Cups meets every Wednesday morning to hear an early-stage startup present their company to a local audience including mentors, advisers and other entrepreneurs. Each founder presents for 10 minutes, followed by a 50-minute question-and-answer session with the audience.

Driving the effort as volunteer community organizers in Daytona Beach are:

  1. Tyler LeCompte, Business Development Manager at Net Works, Inc
  2. Lou Paris, Business Development, Career Source Flagler Volusia, and Stetson University Professor
  3. Michael Zaharios, Program Manager at Florida High Tech Corridor
  4. Art Zimmet, Consultant at the SBDC at Daytona State College

“1 Million Cups has been a tremendous addition to our community,” said Dave Spitzer, Professor at ERAU. “It brings together folks from all walks of life, to meet and interact on a weekly basis.  Through 1 Million Cups I have learned of so many ideas, new companies, and exceptional individuals that are in our community.  At times it can seem to each of us that we are "all alone" as an entrepreneur, or perhaps we're "the only one" that dreams big or sees certain things going on in the world.  It is wonderful to be in a room of people that share dreams, have a broad world view, and see no limits for Daytona Beach.  We may not all need each other every day, but it is nice to know who is out there, and to know where to turn when help is needed.  1 Million Cups has made a huge difference in that feeling of community.

For more information, view the national 1 Million Cups website at, visit our Facebook page at and access the local microsite at Follow 1 Million Cups Daytona Beach on Twitter at @1millioncupsDAB and through the hashtag #1MC.