During a visit to the Gresham office of the Oregon Employment Department on July 8, Gov. Ted Kulongoski helped launch the new iMatchSkills system, an innovative way to match employers and job seekers. The new system makes a job match based on skills, not job titles, enabling employers to easily find workers who best fit their job criteria and allowing job seekers to locate a wider array of jobs for which they qualify.

"iMatchSkills can help Oregon businesses hire Oregonians first by finding the best qualified people right here in our state," said the governor. "Hiring Oregonians first will improve our economy by putting Oregonians back to work in quality jobs and save companies money by streamlining the hiring process."

iMatchSkills is the first of its kind in the nation and was developed by the Oregon Employment Department as part of the Governor's WorkForce Oregon Initiative, the state's network of WorkSource Centers and portfolio of workforce services for businesses and workers. The entire service is prepaid through employer payroll taxes.

When using the new system, job seekers can create resumes, compare themselves to the skills required for a job, and identify gaps in their skills that the workforce system can help span through training and education programs. Employers can also use the iMatchSkills as their own internal recruitment tool by having all their employees enter their skills into the system and then match for job openings within their existing staff.

Currently, iMatchSkills is available in employment department field offices for job seekers. This fall the system will be released to the Internet where it will be available 24 hours a day, seven days a week at www.WorkSourceOregon.org and www.workinginOregon.org.

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