Inspire Connections is a free online program that helps make that happen. It’s directly linked with the Career Cruising program currently being used by over 7,000 students in grades 6-12 in schools in Eau Claire County to explore potential careers. As students do this, Inspire Connections links them to the information about local employers that offer the kinds of jobs that fit their interests.
The only way to make sure that happens for your company is to be sure you set up a free profile. If you don’t, you’ll be “invisible” to local students as they begin to plan for their future. Inspire Connections also provides opportunities to offer job shadows, company tours, student employment and other activities.
You can register by following the instructions outlined below.
More about Inspire Connections
A majority of students across the state of Wisconsin are using the program as part of Wisconsin’s mandated Academic and Career Planning, curriculum implemented for students in grades 6 – 12 that get students actively exploring and planning for their career goals. Inspire has specific components that develop the workforce pipeline and help students achieve their career goals and exploration.
- Company profiles: Each registered company has a profile where students can read about who they are, what they look for in a candidate, see what industry they are in and careers they hire, and watch any videos that a company may upload.
- Career Coach Discussion Boards: Students can post on different message boards to have their questions about careers answered by a professional in that field. Often students will ask questions about where job opportunities are or how to prepare for a career.
- Work-based Learning Activities: Employers can offer 11 different activities for students to get a more hands-on experience.
Here's how to register on your own:
Registering for a company profile is a two-stage, brief process, setting both you as an individual and your company up with an account that are linked to each other. If your company already has a profile, you can still register to volunteer as a Career Coach or offer a Work-based Learning Activity.
To begin the registration process, visit this link.
Stage 1: The first stage focuses on simply setting you up with an account as an individual, so you’ll create your login information. Once you complete this first stage, you’ll come to a screen prompting you to continue onto the next.
Stage 2: Once you continue onto the next stage, you’ll be asked to log in. Then you can input your company’s information which sets up the shell profile for your company. The questions after that will ask questions about your desired level of involvement as an individual in Inspire Connections and your personal career background/expertise, so answer them with yourself in mind rather than the company. You’ll be able to go and actually build your company’s profile and note careers that your organization hires once the registration process is complete.
After completing these two stages, you have now set up a profile for yourself and your company.
Showing students that you more than just exist
Now that you’ve signed up for Inspire Connections you’re no longer invisible to students while they are making career plans and exploring different options. But you don’t want to just stop here. If you didn’t continue building up your profile, students would only see your organization’s contact information, name, and industry rather than the information that is going to actually get them interested in you as a potential future employer.
An effective and complete employer profile allows you to show students that you more than just exist by communicating who you uniquely are, marketing yourself and the Chippewa Valley as a great place to work and live in, and what a career looks like in your industry or particular setting.
Log into your employer profile here to be able to edit your individual and company profiles and manage communications with students.
You will have access to editing the company’s profile if you are the individual who first created your company’s profile. All other volunteers from your company will only have access to their individual profiles and the activities (e.g. Career Discussion boards, Work-based Learning Activities) that they wanted to participate in.
As you get involved in offering additional opportunities like coaching and work-based learning activities, individuals at our company will be asked to complete a simple online background check, at no cost, thanks to the support from Momentum West.
General tips for building your profile:
To become familiar with using Inspire Connection’s main features and learning how to build an effective company profile, watch this PowerPoint presentation. The PowerPoint with audio recording gives important tips that are going to allow you to be easily found by students and things you can do while building your profile to drive student interest. Instructions for watching and listening to the PowerPoint: download and open the PowerPoint, click on the "slide show" tab on the top, then start the presentation from the beginning. There is an audio recording that will automatically play while in the presenting view. If you want to just listen to the recording for a specific slide, go to that slide (while in the editing view rather than presenter view) and click on the speaker icon that is located on the bottom right hand corner of each slide.
- Register for an Inspire Connections profile
- Log into your profile
- "How to" resources (Momentum West)
- How to maximize student interest in your company's profile (PowerPoint with audio recording)
Posted by: Kaylee Tracy, Legislative & Workforce Development Intern