Workforce Development Training Funds Spurs AceCo Expansion

AceCo workers

Two AceCo employees troubleshoot a newly added accessory to a Lathe.

AceCo received a $25,000 Workforce Training Fund grant a year ago that continues to yield growth for the Boise company.

AceCo applied for the grant when the company found itself unable to hire new CNC machinists with the level of experience or GibbsCAM training required. The grant enabled the company to provide the needed training to employees currently in entry level positions, helping both the company and the employees.

Workforce Training Funds allowed AceCo to fly in a trainer so the employees could receive the specialized GibbsCAM training required. “These machinists were all entry level employees with some experience in the field but lacked the specific training we needed them to have,” said Jonathan Scobby, controller for AceCo. “These employees each received a certification of completion and experience which makes them more competitive because they can take that anywhere.”

“The funds we received made it easier for us to invest in our employees and helped offset the opportunity cost of taking the more experienced guys off the line so they could help train others,” Scobby said. “Our workers are now better employees and more productive. They are able to work more accurately and efficiently. We even recently made improvements to many of our staff’s benefits who completed this training in appreciation of their added value in order to help retain them.”

acebuildingAceCo makes component parts used in the semiconductor industry and has seen record sales last year and an increase in profitability because of this expansion.

Idaho employers finance the state’s Workforce Development Training Fund in its entirety through a 3 percent offset of the unemployment insurance tax. For a company to be eligible to receive training funds, it must pay a minimum wage of $12 per hour, provide employer-assisted medical benefits and sell its products or services primarily outside of the region where it is located.

The fund, established in 1996, is one of the state’s most powerful economic development tools available to support new and existing businesses seeking to relocate or expand in Idaho. Funds are awarded for training new workers and/or retraining existing workers with skills necessary for defined economic opportunities and industrial expansion or to provide innovative training solutions to meet industry specific workforce needs or local workforce challenges.

Learn more about how your business may be able to benefit from the many training resources, hiring incentives and other programs available through the Idaho Department of Labor.

— Kristie Winslow, technical writer, 
Idaho Department of Labor