Southwest Michigan ERN - Battle Creek (SWMERN)

Founded: 2011
Southwest Michigan ERN - Battle Creek (SWMERN)

ERN Program ROI: 628%


ERN Program Employee Retention: 97.4%


Workforce Utilizing ERN Program: 23.5%


Distinct Employees Served: 486


Source: Sept 2015-Oct 2016 YE Report



Onsite Success Coaching

The core of the ERN model is onsite confidential Success Coaching that employees can access on a predictable, ongoing basis - no more wasted hours in social services offices. Success Coaches offer direct connection to community resources for any challenges they are facing at work or at home. Employees who face a crisis from lack of resources can get immediate, personal relief at the workplace. Training and advanced education for work-based skills or life skills can be focused goals along with barrier reduction. Services are available to all ERN member employees. Success Coaches accommodate all shifts with off-site locations and alternate meeting times available upon request.

SWMERN Video: Battle Creek (April Hall)

SWMERN Success Coach, April Hall, highlights the benefits and opportunities for SWMERN member employees and employers.

SWMERN Video: Battle Creek (Karen Sheerin)

SWMERN Success Coach, Karen Sheerin, highlights the benefits and opportunities for SWMERN member employees and employers.

Southwest Michigan Employer Resource Network (SWMERN) Study

The goal of this study is to learn about the ways in which the SWMERN program (which provides the success coach you are meeting with) helps job seekers and employees find and retain employment. SWMERN is a network of employers, including your current employer. The expansion of the SWMERN program is partially funded by the U.S. Department of Labor. The study is being run by a company called Social Policy Research Associates (SPR). The surveys will ask you about your satisfaction with the success coach and the types of services you received. You will not be required to submit the survey, but your participation would be very helpful.

Need a Ride to Work? Driven to Succeed Ride Share App Now Available!

Have a long term transportation challenge or is your car in the shop for a few days? The Driven to Succeed Ride Share App, developed in partnership with Michigan ERN Team, can get you to work on time! Currently only available for Android phones (coming soon for iPhone). Watch this introduction video:

Driven to Succeed Ride Share App Tutorial

Download in the App Store for Android (coming soon for iPhone), create a Driver or Rider Profile, request the code from your Success Coach, request a ride for a certain day and time, then communicate with your driver. It's easy! The App is free to download, and ride costs vary depending on your distance from work - ask your driver. Watch our Tutorial:

Workforce Innovation Fund (WIF)

The WIF grant was awarded by the U.S. Department of Labor, to the W.E. Upjohn Institute, in partnership with Michigan ERN to expand the Southwest Michigan ERN to all four counties in the Michigan Works! Southwest Area.

Hardship Loan & Savings Program

Partner: Omni Credit Union

Purpose: The Bridge Loan provides a financial resource for the Success Coach and clients, allowing the coach to connect clients to fair and reputable lending. These loans help clients overcome financial burdens that may be negatively impacting their life including auto repairs, credit repair, payday lending traps, appliance purchases, debt, and family emergencies. It is offered as a last resort for employees facing a financial emergency.

Savings Component: The loan includes a savings component which requires a $10 per week deposit into a savings account. The savings commitment is added to the loan repayment amount, which is placed into a savings account that does not allow withdrawals until the loan is paid in full. At the end of the payment plan, the client will accumulate over $520 in savings. Upon pay-off, the client is encouraged to continue the habit of savings. This not only teaches the client the importance of saving, but also acts as a safety net for the bank/credit union. If an employee is terminated while in payments, the savings account is released back for the lending institution to cover any unpaid remaining portion of the loan.

  Employer Members-Investors

  • AC Foundry
  • Bronson Healthcare Group
  • Caster Concepts
  • Denso Manufacturing of Michigan
  • Garden of Dreams Childcare
  • Heritage Community of Kalamazoo
  • Janesville Acoustics
  • Rosler
  • Take a Break Childcare Center
  • Woodlawn Preschool

  Strategic Partners

  • Calhoun DHHS
  • Kalsee Credit Union
  • Michigan ERN
  • Michigan Works! Southwest
  • Omni Credit Union
  • WE Upjohn Institute