NCTI Partners to Help MSOs Beef Up Their Tech Workforce

NCTI, the Colorado-based provider of cable and broadband technology training services, has forged strategic alliances with two organizations focused on military veterans and reservists, Warriors4Wireless and The Learning Alliance, as part of a plan to help NCTI’s cable operator partners bolster their frontline workforce and to help improve the turnover rate for that important part of the MSO workforce.

W4W is a non-profit founded by military veteran leaders that originally focused on the wireless industry that works to help its partners meet demand for trained communication infrastructure technicians. The unit, focused on helping veterans with their careers in the telecom field, also provides training, advanced certification and transitional support, and is working with NCTI to expand into cable and broadband.

W4W will use NCTI’s online curriculum and complement that with instructor-led courses that focus on skill refinement. The plan is to start the first training later this summer, according to Stacey Slaughter, NCTI CEO, said.

The Learning Alliance (LAC) also trains and places individuals, including military vets and reservists, for jobs in the cable and broadband industry. Slaughter said the LAC program has been live for about six months, and that about 50 students per month are being on-boarded to the program.

Slaughter said the partnerships target a key demo as they aim to bring a new wave of skilled employees with strong leadership qualities to the cable industry, while also helping operators improve the churn rate for the frontline workforce.

The rate of churn for that portion of the cable workforce varies by MSO, but on an anecdotal level the average is about 40% per year, Slaughter said.

“By collaborating with NCTI, we have created a learning mechanism that provides the rigor and hands-on practical application skills needed to reduce the learning curve associated with career path within the cable and broadband industry,” said Cesar Ruiz, president and CEO of LAC. “Because of these efforts, we have been able to support an increased retention rate of 89%.”

“Our partnership with NCTI will allow us to expand the opportunity for separating service members and Veterans to not just find a job but to embark on a career path,” Kelley Dunne, chairman and founder of W4W, said in a statement. “A career path that continues their service to our country by building out critical communication infrastructure following successful military careers.”

Slaughter finalized a deal to acquire NCTI in December 2015 (then known as Jones/NCTI) from Jones International, the conglomerate founded by the late cable industry cable pioneer Glenn R. Jones. NCTI followed with a rebranding of the company about six months after the acquisition was finalized. NCTI moved into its new Littleton, Colo.-based headquarters about a year ago. 

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Slaughter said NCTI has north of 500,000 students, works with the top 50 operators, and issues about 12,000 college credits per year. NCTI has been adding more than 1,000 course registrations and enrollments per month.