Workforce Development

A skilled, educated workforce is an essential component of a strong and growing local economy. NLC helps city leaders support workforce development by connecting economic development efforts with workforce development, working with the business community to identify talent needs and convening stakeholders to align disparate activities toward a common goal.

    Why the Workforce Act Matters (2012)
    This series focuses on the Workforce Investment Act (WIA) and NLC’s belief that Congress must reauthorize and modernize the Act to ensure that it meets the needs of today’s workers and employers. NLC will publish other blogs that will address the kinds of job training that WIA programs offer, the impact that these programs have on workers and employers, some examples of effective programs, the kinds of changes to WIA NLC can and cannot support, and what members of the Human Development Committee are doing to ensure that the Congress is aware of city elected officials legislative wants and concerns.

    Why the Workforce Act Matters — Part I
    In this first blog we will explore the foundation of the program, which is commonly referred to as the local public-private partnership (which includes local business leaders and local city and county elected officials), the one-stop system, and how these translate programmatically at the local level.

    Why the Workforce Investment Act Matters — Part II
    In this second blog we will explore how and why job training services are offered and what role the local workforce investment boards and city and county elected officials play in the development and implementation of these services.

    Why the Workforce Investment Act Matters — Part III
    In this third blog we will explore how these locally-based job training programs have translated into real world outcomes that have benefited unemployed, underemployed and economically disadvantaged adults and youth throughout the United States.

    Why We Should Care about Public Sector Job Loss (Ocotber 2012)
    Last week the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released preliminary revised unemployment estimates.  It appears that the economy actually netted 386,000 jobs this year, but only after accounting for a loss of 67,000 government jobs. This recent news compounds figures suggesting that as of August 2012, local government employment in the U.S. had decreased by approximately 650,000 jobs from peak levels in 2008.

    Untangling the Skills Mismatch Debate: Implications for Local Economic Development (August 2012)
    The paradox of persistent unemployment and unfilled jobs has many analysts pointing to a  skills mismatch in the economy.  This widely accepted hypothesis has come under fire recently, with implications for local and regional economic development.

    NLC Survey Provides Insight on City Workforce Development Activities (February 2011)
    The State of America's Cities: Special Section on Workforce Development finds that cities are engaging in workforce development activities by partnering with chambers of commerce and local businesses.  The findings of the annual survey are explained in this Nation's Cities Weekly article.

    Cities Provide Services to Young Professionals for Economic Development (May 2010)
    Providing professional, social and community networks to encourage young, skilled workers to remain in their communities are becoming a focus of cities.  This Nation's Cities Weekly article highlights efforts to  offer entry- and mid-level careerists services, job search assistance, volunteer opportunities, and social networking among peers and businesses from the area.