Preparing a workforce for tomorrow
Finding the right talent and keeping workforce’s skills up-to-date are essential to the success of any business. Fortunately, the Lehigh Valley has many resources to help your business thrive.
Availability of skilled labor is a challenge not just here, but in many growing economies across the United States. LVEDC began its exploration of the talent market by convening an Education and Talent Supply Council in 2015.
LVEDC works closely with Workforce Board Lehigh Valley, regional employers, and higher education partners including the Lehigh Valley Association of Independent Colleges to meet the Lehigh Valley’s workforce needs.
To increase understanding of the talent market, LVEDC, in conjunction with Workforce Board Lehigh Valley (WBLV), hired consulting firm MDB Insight to conduct a study, which included surveys, interviews, and focus groups with more than 300 businesses from five targeted industry sectors and other stakeholders, including educators, staffing agencies and regional organizations.
The study resulted in a strategic action plan with 36 recommendations to improve the talent market, create approaches for developing workplace skills, and prepare job seekers to be successful in high-demand careers. LVEDC and WBLV identified the highest priorities recommendations, including:
- Increased collaboration on job-readiness tools such as internships, apprenticeships, mentoring programs, and business tours.
- Creation of an accessible, easy-to-use Lehigh Valley database on jobs and training opportunities.
- Development of “employability skills” programs to improve job readiness and retention.
- Additional research into Lehigh Valley residents who leave the area for college or jobs, and how they may be motivated to return to the region.
- Creation of consistent brand messaging that can be used broadly by regional organizations to showcase the Lehigh Valley’s economic assets, opportunities, and quality of life.
To find out more about LVEDC’s talent supply initiatives, contact Karianne Gelinas, Director of Talent Supply, at [email protected].