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5 projections for the workplace in 2021

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Editor’s Note: As we completed a challenging and unique year and entered a new one, the Training Industry editorial board asked training leaders to write their reflections on 2020 and projections for 2021. This is a series of “What has changed and what has not?” : Summing up the results of 2020 and planning for 2021, ”is the result. Also, don’t miss our infographics, “5 tips on how to turn the riots of 2020 in the direction of 2021: understanding from learning leaders”, who shares thoughts from the series.

A year ago, the landscape of learning and the workforce was determined by mega-trends that have acquired the status of a buzzword. Employers, education providers and policymakers have spoken out about shortening the shelf life of skills, tightening the labor market and accelerating the pace of technological change with anxious anticipation and enthusiasm.

What a difference for the year. The COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked havoc on the global economy, confusing markets and leading to historic unemployment. Nationwide reckoning with systemic racism has boiled over, and leading political elites and business leaders have begun to rethink hereditary practices which too often perpetuate (or exacerbate) inequality. Turbulent elections will bring a change in policy priorities that will change the landscape of education and training.

But while some trends have turned upside down, others have only accelerated. The pace of technological change is not slowing down, and future work does not take a pause to wait for a pandemic. Last year we made five predictions about how the world of work will evolve in 2020. Here we summarize these ideas and study what will happen to them after an unexpected, unprecedented year.

1. Learning to work becomes working to learn

A year ago, we expected to continue the trend in which employers have become one of the most important brokers in education and training. Instead of going to school so you can find a job, more people find work so they can go to school. This prediction came after a historic year for employers ’investment in skills training. In 2019 Amazon, IBM and PwC announced major initiatives to improve the skills of workers – or, in some cases, prepare them for the next job. Walmart has expanded its “Live Better U” program for $ 1 a day with a new focus on fast-growing areas such as union health.

We can expect that this trend of education provided by the employer will continue in 2021. The commitment of companies to socially responsible practices will make it even more important to offer skills as an advantage. The rapidly changing world of work will require more and more employers to rethink the “build versus buy” approach. as Josh Bersin writesways that can better pave the way for economic mobility for more than 70 million workers who do not have higher education but have the skills to succeed in working with higher salaries.

2. Learning the future

Can a centuries-old approach to education be considered “new”? Even before the pandemic, apprenticeship – which have existed since the Middle Ages – have again aroused interest as an approach with a two-party appeal, which can both meet the needs of talent development and provide workers with new paths to a stable career.

Long recognized by Fr. “a bright spot for bipartisanship,” the development of the workforce received federal support during the Trump administration, which supported public-private partnerships aimed at expanding or creating apprenticeship programs. At the same time, organizations like it Technological continue to help workers and employers overcome the pandemic by introducing a new, technology-oriented approach to pay-as-you-go training.

3. Growth of skill

Of course, not all technological failures are good for workers – a fact that becomes increasingly apparent as the future of work becomes the present. According to Fr. report published by the General Assembly before the pandemic, seven out of 10 employers said they had to fire someone whose work had become unfeasible due to the introduction of new technology. Employers are now facing even more pressure to introduce ethical approaches to employee withdrawal.

For many employers, this approach involved perhaps unreasonable benefits in the workplace: training employees who would eventually leave their organization. The so-called “performers”, as in the case of Amazon’s Career Choice Program, helps organizations promote general employee sentiment, build positive long-term relationships with employees, and differentiate themselves in the eyes of potential candidates. But Penn Foster’s own pre-pandemic research found that while 80% of company executives said they valued skill, only 40% had such a program.

As we face uncertain economic prospects in the coming months, employers who are responsive and responsive to the needs of employees – even as they struggle with economic shocks – will reconsider their approach to training, even for employees who may leave their organization. At the same time, they will gain benefits in acquiring and retaining talent.

4. The potential of “first mile” services.

First invented in the telecommunications industry, industries from supply chain management to labor force development have been given this term. “Last mile.” In the years before the pandemic, “Last Mile Workout” has become a popular descriptor for staff being short-term career-oriented programs that provide the most in-demand jobs in the job market.

There is no doubt that last mile programs offer faster, cheaper ways to economic mobility. But the realities of the “first mile” faced by millions of Americans left behind by economic growth are often ignored: lack of food security, mental health problems, lack of life skills, or even problems with transportation and child care. These “community care” social services are often the main determinants of academic performance and provide a huge advantage when they are provided as part of a holistic “life on the road” risk reduction solution.

Undoubtedly, the pandemic has exacerbated many of these problems and exacerbated the need for comprehensive support for displaced or low-income workers. There is a growing awareness among both employers and training providers that these first mile barriers need to be removed to address growing skills gaps and equity in the workforce. As a result, many companies are working with colleges and community organizations to help increase access to these services.

5. Untying in the middle

The range of so-called “secondary skills” opportunities (between a high school diploma and a bachelor’s degree) is vast, complex, and growing – and is the basis for much of America’s productivity and prosperity. In fact, positions of average skill now make up most of the American job market.

But given the uniform “average” skill level, this term threatens to underestimate the level of skill acquisition required to succeed in these roles, which are often highly skilled and specialized. Today are skills-based approaches to hiring and digital icons – supplemented by complex, localized data on the labor market, which can link job seekers with a sought-after career – challenge the dichotomy “degree or not”. They reflect an increasing impetus for a model that recognizes the achievement of skills not as a binary but as a spectrum – one that can help open up opportunities on the supply and demand side of the labor market.

As the country continues to grapple with the effects of the pandemic on the economy and public health, 2021 should be a year to sum up the mass shifts and lay the groundwork for a more secure and just future.

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