One key to thriving in a competitive global economy is a properly skilled workforce that can innovate, create new products and services, and bring them to market quickly and efficiently. America remains a leader in innovation, but its workforce is falling behind. Education and workforce development systems have not kept pace with the demands of the 21st century, and we all bear the costs of this failure. American businesses spend billions of dollars each year training their employees and pour billions more into education. Despite these substantial investments, employers continue to report that too many job seekers are unqualified for modern jobs.
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Aligning education delivery with business needs is one of our country’s most pressing imperatives if we are to minimize the increasing skills gap.
More than 36 years ago, the president of Central Washington University began facilitating meetings to bring business and education leaders together. Even at that time, there was a consensus that students were not graduating with the necessary skills employers were seeking.
ACT, one of the largest educational testing 501(c)(3) organizations in the United States, has propelled its mission to advance education and workplace success to a new level with Certified Work Ready Communities (CWRC).
Joe Kitterman, founder of 180Skills LLC, recognizes that in technical education, mastery of skills counts for significantly more than time spent in the classroom.
The natural gas industry is a growing field that actively seeks local workers with knowledge of gas exploration and development.
Considerable attention recently has been focused on the skills employees need to succeed in the workplace. However, few studies have asked employers and the workforce what they see as the key skills and competencies necessary to thrive and how these might be acquired; fewer still have asked both employers and employees to consider these topics and analyze how their responses are congruent or incongruent. Independently, the University of Phoenix and U.S. Chamber of Commerce each sought to explore these topics with new primary studies conducted among the U.S. labor force and business executives. This summary presents key findings from these studies and ties them together to paint a picture of life in the 21st century workplace and the key dynamics both workers and employers need to consider as they seek to promote excellence in the workplace.
According to the Hispanic Association on Corporate Responsibility (HACR), Hispanics represent one-eighth of the nation’s population, but a disproportionate number fill low-wage jobs.
A great divide has emerged in the United States between the education and skills of the American workforce and the needs of the nation’s employers.