Want to roll back offshoring? Create jobs? Train our folks

Discussion in 'Media' started by hvactec, Oct 18, 2011.

  1. hvactec
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    hvactec VIP Member

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    A few weeks ago I was quoted in The Wall Street Journal for expressing that President Obama's speech on jobs would have benefited from more specifics on the need to train people in the skill sets that are in huge demand in the economy right now. To elaborate on this, according to a recent McKinsey & Company report, the U.S. needs to create 21 million new jobs by 2020 to bring employment back to pre-recession levels. Downsizing and offshoring get most of the press when it comes to job loss, but an important and less-frequently discussed part of the equation is the fact that technology is outpacing the skills of today's worker, and in many cases sending jobs overseas.

    How many jobs? In my IT staffing practice, on average about one third of the positions we staff go to H-1B visas not because of cost, but because there simply aren't enough qualified domestic applicants. The number is even higher for technologies like .Java, .Net, SQL, PHP, and MY SQL where the majority go to H-1B. As we seek to create jobs, shouldn't we be just as concerned about making sure our workforce is qualified to take jobs that are already there?

    The other talent gap

    However, the need for tech training goes beyond issues of offshoring IT. Social media has combined with cloud computing to ignite an unprecedented level of business innovation, but once again, technological advancements constantly outpace the knowledge and skills of today's worker. The result is a second talent gap that prevents organizations from reaching their full potential, and in doing so, stifles the kind of growth we need to create jobs. In this instance, the “gap” is not so much centered around lack of mastery of a specific technology as it is a lack of knowledge of how that technology applies to the very specific needs of each business.

    As the line between IT and the rest of the business continues to blur, we're going to see an increased need for administrators and developers to not only stay up-to-date, but also learn how these innovations map to their company's specific processes and strategies. On the flip side of the coin, the need for IT training may very well go beyond IT -- management, marketing and sales professionals are going to need to be trained on these technologies as well.

    Diverting budget for training

    read more Want to roll back offshoring? Create jobs? Train our folks - Computerworld Blogs
     

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