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Atlantic City's Borgata Focuses on Work Force

6 May 2002

ATLANTIC CITY, New Jersey – As reported by the Press of Atlantic City: "Sitting in a conference room, Borgata CEO Bob Boughner is sketching out the keys to the future casino hotel's success.

"…`We've spent a considerable amount of time on the architecture of the building, the architecture of our brand position and the architecture of our business processes,' Boughner said. `Now, we are focusing on the people part. Without the quantity and quality of talent, it will make it more difficult for us to achieve our objectives.'

"With the $1 billion Borgata casino hotel scheduled to open a little more than a year from now, Boughner and his staff are developing strategies to attract the 4,600 to 4,800 workers the property will employ.

"…With a shallow labor pool to draw from, the city's casino hotels already have had a tough time filling open positions during the past few years, and it's expected to get more difficult when the Borgata opens. The tight labor market has Boughner tight-lipped about most of the casino's strategies for building a work force.

"…However, Borgata has detailed one of its plans to improve work force development in Atlantic City. In July, the company expects to open a facility on Atlantic Avenue that will house its Atlantic City Jobs & Opportunities Program, which offer job-readiness training to unemployed and underemployed city residents.

"The goal is to prepare at least 2,000 city residents for full-time employment, said Eric Reynolds, Borgata's executive director of development, who is overseeing the program.

"…The program has numerous components and strives to teach residents life and employability skills in addition to providing training for jobs in fields that include hospitality, marketing and construction, Reynolds said. He said the program's objective is to make residents ready to enter the work force, not just to train them for Borgata jobs.

"Borgata officials have received more than 10,000 unsolicited expressions of interest in employment since plans for the casino were announced in January 1999, Boughner said.

"…In addition, Borgata expects to build part of its staff by luring hospitality professionals who currently don't work in the casino industry.

"…Part of the Borgata's staff also is expected to be comprised of people who currently work at other properties in Atlantic City. However, rival casino operators aren't likely to sit idle while Borgata attempts to poach part of their staff…"

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