Woodstock Area Job Bank

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Last year, the Job Bank introduced Bit Time to the community. Bit Time  was designed to answer the growing need to have an available list of workers to do odd/one-time jobs.  We standardized the hourly wage to $20 per hour.  The idea was that lots of people might be interested in a few hours of odd-job work at a decent wage to supplement their income.  And community members who needed a few hours of labor could find it easily and conveniently. 

So far Bit Time has been a big success.  We have had people find office assistants, organizers, writers, movers, gardeners, babysitters, elder-care respite providers, drivers, and pet walkers.  Our youngest Bit Time worker was fourteen and found multiple jobs within walking distance to the village last summer.  He did such a good job, several of those jobs turned into regular part-time positions.  One 85 year young woman found herself back in the job market during the busy fall foliage season spending 2 hours a day covering lunch breaks for a retail store.  The Job Bank itself even hired a Bit Time worker to help with the technical part of putting together our annual appeal, which saved us lots of money and time.

However, with every new program, while you cheer your successes, you also have to look at what can be done better so the program can continue to grow.  The biggest problem I have had to think about is timeliness.  The Job Bank is not open full-time and I am not available 24-7.  Community members looking for some types of odd job work need it immediately.  Plus some of my workers would like to get more calls.

The simplest solution was to include, in each weekly newsletter, a list of available Bit Time workers as well as the jobs they are willing to do so that community members can contact them directly.  Almost all potential workers can now be contacted by text as well. I don’t feel comfortable putting student contact information in the newsletter, so if you are looking to hire a student, we will still have to do it the old-fashioned way. For now, I hope this change will make it easier to find just the worker you need, whenever you need them even if I am not in the office.

Looking towards the future, I am planning to also include this information on the website as well as a simple way to rate and recommend workers—one step at a time.

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