Talent for Tomorrow looking to solve workforce problems
AIM President Ray McCarty, a member of the Talent for Tomorrow Task Force, attended a meeting of that group this week. The task force is comprised of leaders from business, education, and economic development.
“Talent for Tomorrow” and the “Best in Midwest” are two efforts that aim to bring together programs and initiatives across state government to help provide solutions to employers’ workforce needs and to make Missouri competitive with other Midwest states.
The Talent for Tomorrow Task Force discussion echoed the findings of the State of the St. Louis Workforce study unveiled last week by the St. Louis Community College (see article here). Employers need trained and qualified workers to fill existing jobs and those that don’t exist today.
“One recommendation I suggested to the task force was to not focus efforts on selected ‘sectors’ because nobody knows what our future workforce needs are and often such efforts tend to ignore or reduce the importance of manufacturing jobs,” said McCarty. “Manufacturing is key to building value in an economy and Missouri should continue to focus on providing the workforce necessary to attract high quality manufacturing jobs in the future,” he said.
“Another problem that needs to be addressed is instilling ‘soft skills’ or ‘power skills’ in potential employees,” he continued. “Work ethic – showing up on time, dressing appropriately, staying after the training period – is lacking in today’s workforce, according to our employer members.”
The results of the Talent for Tomorrow effort will be unveiled at the Governor’s Conference on Economic Development in KC in early September.