Manufacturing AUTOMATION

Canada Job Grant offsets employee training costs

February 26, 2021
By Alena Barreca

Photo: Blue Planet Studio/Getty Images

Corporate leaders and human resource departments in the manufacturing industry across Canada face numerous time-sensitive and critical matters on a weekly basis.

One of the greatest challenges for many manufacturing businesses continues to be the need for qualified and educated team members working in the shops. Although leaders know the importance of hiring skilled personnel, the task of training new and existing staff can often take a backseat to seemingly more urgent matters.

Knowing the skills gap exists in many industries, the Government of Canada has implemented a training grant called the Canada Job Grant (CJG) that can provide manufacturing businesses with government grants and incentives for hiring and training new employees, such as apprentices and interns, and upskilling their current staff.

The CJG reduces the burden on cashflow while saving essential time and helps new and existing team members learn skills specific to the job while building upon the skills they already possess.

Ultimately, CJG training grants can help Canadian manufacturers improve the quality and quantity of work that their new and existing staff are able to perform by offsetting costs of up to $15,000 per trainee or current employee (in Ontario, as amounts vary by province).

1. What is the Canada Job Grant (CJG)?

The Canada Job Grant (CJG) is a federal funding program that helps employers reduce the costs associated with third-party employee training programs. The government grants offered for training do vary from province to province. The Canada-Ontario Job Grant (COJG) offsets up to 50-83 per cent of businesses’ training costs to a maximum $10,000 to $15,000 per trainee.

For leaders and hiring departments in the manufacturing industry, CJG grants can vastly improve and save time on the onboarding and training aspects of a new hire by accessing third-party training programs that teach job specific skills to qualified candidates that may need a refresher, or training to understand the processes of machinery or processes they’ve never worked with before.

The Canada Job Grant (CJG) is a federal funding program that helps employers reduce the costs associated with third-party employee training programs.

Upskilling for existing staff is also a bonus, as many manufacturers may be introducing new systems over time and need to train their entire team at once. Without putting extra pressure asking a supervisor or shop foreman to train the team, a third-party training program can save critical time while teaching crucial skills.

In most provinces, manufacturers can receive up to 50 to 83 per cent of eligible manufacturing training costs to implement training programs that lead to employees’ improved skillsets.

This next section will further explore the Canada Job Grant as it pertains to its Ontario variant, the Canada-Ontario Job Grant (COJG). While the program is not unlike other provinces’, each variation supports unique eligibility criteria. Be sure to consult your province’s unique criteria prior to application.

2. How much funding is available?

For the Ontario variant of the Canada Job Grant, the amount of grant funding a manufacturing business can receive depends on the size of their business.

For a large business employer with over 100 employees, up to 50 per cent of eligible training expenses are available to a maximum of $10,000 per trainee.

For small business employers with less than 100 employees, an increased amount of up to 83 per cent of eligible training expenses are available to a maximum of $10,000 per trainee.

For small business employers hiring and training unemployed individuals, up to 100% of eligible training costs are available to a maximum of $15,000 per trainee.

3. Who can apply for COJG grants?

To receive COJG grant funding, employers must maintain operations in Ontario, provide cash contributions to pay non-grant-covered training costs, abide by the Occupational Health and Safety Act and the Employment Standards Act, and have sufficient Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) or private workplace safety insurance.

4. What types of training programs are eligible?

The Canada-Ontario Job Grant also maintains specific criteria to evaluate the eligibility of training programs. To access COJG grants, training must take place in Ontario, be led by a qualified third-party training provider, deliver training that directly relates to a business’ needs, and not exceed one year in duration.

A few examples of third-party training programs that may apply specifically to manufacturers may include new product installation and demonstration by the provider, skills training by an expert professional, health and safety protocol training, leadership management and/or customer service training, and other essential or developmental training programs offered to improve the ongoing processes of any type of manufacturing business in Ontario.

5. How to apply for CJG employee training grants

To receive CJG grant funding for an upcoming manufacturing training project, employers must submit a comprehensive application package consisting of a company overview, detailed training plans, and multiple vendor quotes. Typically, applications are reviewed within 2-4 weeks.

Alena Barreca is a marketing coordinator at Mentor Works, a business support organization specializing in Canadian government funding. 

This article appears in the February 2021 issue of Manufacturing AUTOMATION.

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