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County-Wide Customer Service Training Program Addresses Worker Shortage with 25 New Graduates

Local Businesses Can Tap into New Talent Pipeline to Meet Staffing Needs


SLO Partners, a leading provider of apprenticeship programs in California, today announced the completion of its county-wide customer service training programs. The workshops were created to bolster the local workforce and meet the growing demand for customer service professionals. Attended by 52 participants, the training programs proved to be a vital link between high-school graduates looking for work and local employers seeking skilled personnel.


Spanning three days, the workshops were held in South County, San Luis Obispo, and Paso Robles. The intensive training program focused on equipping candidates with the necessary skills to thrive in the unique and diverse landscape of Central Coast customer service.


“We are pleased to witness the positive impact of our customer service training program on both job seekers and local businesses,” said Paul Piette, Director, SLO Partners of the SLO County Office of Education. “By equipping our participants with essential skills, we are empowering them to secure fulfilling employment while meeting the demands of our local business community."


With a curriculum designed to address the region's specific demands, participants received specialized training in emotional intelligence in the workplace, active listening, and mastering both nonverbal and verbal communication. The program emphasized problem-solving techniques, a crucial skill for delivering impeccable customer service. All candidates additionally completed the certificate from the SLO Cal Welcome customer training program.


The workshops also gave candidates opportunities to partake in mock interviews with local employers. The interaction proved fruitful for several participants who secured job offers after the event. A total of 16 employers, representing sectors ranging from retail and restaurants to entertainment, golf courses, and hotels, engaged with the potential hires in a bid to address their staffing needs.


The positive response from local employers highlights the success of the program. HR directors were impressed with the caliber of candidates presented during the workshops. 


“Sometimes our youth don't know how to get started or make connections on their own,” said Vicki Federicko, HR Manager at Farm Supply Company. “This creates a great environment for everyone to meet and get to know one another.”


“I found the workshop very efficient and meaningful,” said Chloe Plum, HR Manager at Martin Resorts. “It was great to connect with recent grads and learn more about the upcoming workforce. They were well-prepared and professional.”


Buoyed by the resounding success of the customer service workshops, SLO Partners is considering expanding its offerings to reach a wider audience. This strategic expansion aims to bolster the region's workforce and bridge the gap between job seekers and employers seeking skilled talent. “We are hearing from local employers that there is a high need for employees with good customer service skills and those who have emotional intelligence in the workplace. We hope the program will grow to help fill the needs of our employers and place our graduates into jobs throughout the community,” said Jennifer Clayton, Director, of SLO Partners at the San Luis Obispo County Office of Education.


For businesses interested in hiring graduates of the program or participating in future workshops, please contact




About SLO Partners (

SLO Partners is a leading provider of career upskilling and modern apprenticeship programs in California and a winner of the 2020 CA Partnership for Industry and Education award. Formed in 2014 as an initiative of the San Luis Obispo County Office of Education, its mission is to create accelerated career pathways allowing residents to earn head-of-household incomes, while simultaneously solving a skilled talent shortage for local, growing businesses. The nonprofit has produced several intensive upskilling programs: FullStack Software Developer, Software Testing, IT Networking, Precision Manufacturing, and Digital Marketing. Together, these have produced over 150 career opportunities in SLO County in tech and manufacturing roles creating a $5M local annual economic impact. For more information watch the ‘SLO Partners: How it Works’ video and visit


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