|I’m so pleased to be back from parental leave and reviewing all the group has accomplished in my absence! The U.S. labor market has seen some changes over the past few months, and while many forecasted that hiring would cool, employment has proved to be much more resilient than other areas of the economy.
However, while hiring in general is strong, our workforce still faces hurdles to upward mobility. The Convergence Dialogue on Pathways to Better Jobs has brought leaders with divergent views together to find areas for collaboration. We are focused on identifying ways to better connect workers with appropriate opportunities to build their skills and utilize their existing qualifications, as well as ways to connect employers with resources to create and expand opportunities for skill-building and advancement to source the talent they need. Our group’s goal for this project is to create symbiosis between workers and employers so that more workers hold jobs with better opportunities for growth and employers see improved return on investment.
We are encouraged that project participants are beginning to build upon the trust and relationships established during the first half of this project and are working together to generate impact. For example, Deeneaus “D” Polk, Founder of 3LEVATE, and Jenna Shrove, Senior Director of Strategic Advocacy and Advisor to the Chief Policy Officer, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, have penned an op-ed on why more employers should consider skill-based hiring practices and how this can benefit our workforce. You can expect an update on the publication of this piece from our Communications team soon! If you have ideas for ways to share this important work with your own network of contacts, please let us know.
To enhance our discussions, we brought in guest speakers to two of our recent meetings. We had the pleasure of hearing from Matt Sigelman, President of the Burning Glass Institute, on Burning Glass’s research on how skills are bearing out in the market today and how they become an effective mechanism for increasing mobility, prosperity, and workplace equity. You can find a recording of Matt’s presentation here.
Stephen Goldsmith and Kate Markin Coleman, authors of Growing Fairly: How to Build Opportunity and Equity in Workforce Development, discussed the research presented in their book and highlighted strategies for creating more effective and equitable workforce development systems. A recording of Kate and Stephen’s presentation is available here.
On behalf of all of us at Convergence, we wish all of you a healthy and joyful holiday season, and we look forward to a productive year ahead!