Maine Job Bank Services Now Available Online
By Cathy Squires, OIT, Department of Labor
As of November 9, 2008, the Maine Job Bank is available to the public via the Internet in the form of LEON (“Labor Exchange on the Net”). The job bank is a service provided by the Department of Labor's Bureau of Employment Services (BES). This service has been delivered for many years to job seekers and employers via staff in the CareerCenter offices located throughout the state. Budget cuts have required the closing of many of these offices, causing the BES to re-think how they deliver their services.
Using LEON , job seekers may register and create job search profiles which form the basis of their job matching activities. They may optionally upload a resume which then, upon the specific request by the job seeker, is shared with employers relative to particular job openings. E-mail notifications alert job seekers whenever a potentially suitable job is entered by an employer or by CareerCenter staff. Employers may manage their job openings online and may link up with job seekers who have expressed interest in their jobs. Staff may consult the system for real-time statistics and to provide customer support as needed.
Designed and built by OIT staff and contracted programmers over the course of one year, the LEON application is a multi-tier ASP.NET web application with an Oracle 10g back-end. It consists of 90+ web pages, 80K lines of code, and 72 database tables. This transactional web application includes the capacity for uploading documents from outside the State network which presented unique technical and security challenges. Ongoing collaboration was required with several teams within OIT's Core Technology Services, as well as extensive testing to meet all aspects of the application deployment certification policy.
LEON replaces roughly one quarter of the functionality previously delivered by OSOS, a Windows-based Progress 4GL application in use by the CareerCenters. It also includes interfaces between the Unemployment Compensation system (both the MICS web initial claims system and the staff-used Benefits system) to ensure that all unemployment claimants are automatically registered for the job bank. In addition, jobs posted to LEON are uploaded nightly to two national job banks.
In its first week of use (including the Veterans' Day holiday during which CareerCenters were closed), LEON supported over 6000 account creations, 96 new jobs posted, and generated over 700 job referrals. Roughly 33% of the activity occurred outside of standard business hours. It is expected that use will increase significantly after the system is formally marketed later this year.