The Alberta Workforce Essential Skills Society (AWES) is a non-profit organization focused on training, research and curriculum development. AWES specializes in developing customized essential skills training solutions for organizations, employers and practitioners.

Since its launch in 1989, AWES has remained at the leading edge of essential skills initiatives. We continue to build on our long history of innovation by staying current with emerging economic, technological, demographic, and immigration trends.

Organizations, employers, and practitioners often come to AWES when they have a problem. The issue might affect productivity, a worker’s ability to understand and implement training, employee retention, or health and safety performance. This may cause an increase in absenteeism or time wasted redoing tasks, workplace errors when calculating formulas, filling in shift or incident reports, or making decisions. The problem is often misidentified as a behavioural issue with the workers themselves, poor attitude, a lack of initiative or a lack of common sense. It’s far more likely that your workforce has essential skills gaps, and we can help.

AWES identifies skill gaps and develops customized and specialized essential skills responses to problems.


Our vision

Everyone has the opportunity for the training and skills development required to learn, adapt, and thrive in a constantly changing world.


Our mission

To create opportunities for people to develop the skills they need to remain resilient in the face of advancing technology and to successfully engage at work, home, and the community.


Our values

Collaborative: We work closely with our clients and partners to understand their perspective, providing solutions that work for all members of the organization.

Equitable: We work towards creating justice for vulnerable populations through training, advocacy, and opportunity.

Responsive: We start by listening since each project is a unique undertaking. We respond to your specific needs quickly and creatively with customized solutions.

Future-focused: We are dedicated to staying ahead of the trends, prepared to meet labour market challenges head on with future focused skills development.


Our mandate

Essential skills are a key driver of success at work, at home and in the community. Taking a client-focused and learner-centered approach, we apply our integrated training framework, content expertise, and industry knowledge to create tailored training solutions that fit the needs of the whole organization. We strive to create opportunities for collaboration with and among partners to foster shared learning environments in which everyone benefits. Contextualized skills development is the secret to successful learning whether the topic is workplace safety, leadership, or employment.