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Jobs, Training & Your Tax Dollars: The Need for Honest, Effective Reform & Collaboration

Billions of our tax dollars are being poured into Job training programs every year through the Dept. of Labor, the Employment Training Panel (via a special tax on employers), Visa programs and many other government grants. During 2012-2013 The U.S. Department of Labor spent approximately $1,289,600,121 on Job training and employment programs. The Employment Training Panel spent approximately $76,600,000 dollars on employer training programs. There are 24 other Government Grant Agencies.

However, after participating in government and tax funded training programs, even after 4 years of college education, many participants still cannot find jobs, while Unemployment remains relatively high with little significant changes in the last few years. This is even truer in historically disenfranchised communities.

The Issue:

Per the Bureau of Labor statistics, as of February 2013. There are over 3.9 million current Job openings. This is the highest number of job openings since May of 2008. However, according to Bloomberg and Robert Haalf International, 60% of business cited, “A lack of skilled, qualified applicants” as the reason for leaving these positions unfilled.

With billions of dollars being spent on Job training and education through county, state, local and private agencies for skilled, qualified employees; the question remains— “What is the performance measure of effective Job, career training, if not a job?”

Small business employs about 55% of our workforce. With the current economic crisis: people losing their homes, the onslaught of dislocated workers and the Middle Class sinking further into poverty; our tax dollars must be directed to implement result-driven, direct impact, competitive workforce training and education that actually “works” for the businesses that sustain our economy. If not, businesses will opt to leave and find the skillsets, resources and support they need elsewhere, rather than shutting their doors permanently. Training for the sake of training will not sustain our economy. We must train to help business compete in our global world economy.

The Solution:

  1. Training effectiveness must be result-oriented, measured by:
    1. Job placement
    2. Applicant/Trainee job skill competitiveness (locally and internationally)
    3. A Company’s willingness to hire, promote and pay competitive wages for skills

      Training programs must reform immediately and adapt their programs to provide the practical, applicable, hirable skillsets required to meet the urgent needs of 21st century business. A truly “Globally Competitive American Workforce” is the only way to create long-term business sustainability, growth and success for employers, employees and their families.

  2. Program effectiveness must be measured by the participants ability to do the following:
    1. Ability for trainees to apply/implement new and evolving technical skillsets
    2. Participants ability to transfer their existing experience and skillsets to 21st century business needs, applications and “Best Practices”
    3. “Hands-on” training models should include:
      1. This is why (theory)
      2. This what (the available tools)
      3. This is How (application)
        1. Current applicability/ability
        2. Future enterprise
        3. Innovation
      4. Personal/Professional/Workplace Skills Development

    Most training programs and trainers are sincere in their efforts. However, there is a disconnect between the business needs (which are the skills and abilities a company is willing to pay for) and the skillsets trainers and educators provide. If the company is not willing to pay for the skillsets being trained, then the trainees are not competitive and the training though meaningful is ineffective.

    By providing “practical hands-on and technological skills” needed people, communities and businesses we can better compete in today’s global economy.

  3. Train-the-Trainers
    1. Technology is moving at a rate faster than people (trainers too) can keep up
      1. Trainers must be trained on current technology business/market trends
      2. Training must be relevant to current, evolving and future business needs
    2. Business, Trainer, Advisory Collaborations are a must
      1. Trainers must be connected to business to understand business needs
      2. Trainers must be able to effectively communicate the immediate needs of business to trainees
    3. Programs must be created and implemented in short terms to meet the needs of the businesses and put our communities to work.

    Train-the-trainers programs and hands on business advisories must be implemented to assist trainers/Instructors themselves obtain the tools they need to train job seekers to be competitive. This is accomplished by providing the skillsets employers deem worthy of paying for; while helping existing staff and employees obtain the skills they need to ensure their company can compete in today’s global economy. Government funded training programs have a responsibility to businesses and to tax payers to be effective by providing the skilled and qualified workers today’s businesses need and deserve.