The New Jersey Workforce: Enhancing the State's Greatest Competitive Advantage in a Global Economy

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Discusses New Jersey's highly skilled workforce and the initiatives that will continue to improve and strengthen its workforce to increase its competitiveness in today's economy

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  • Availability and quality of the workforce Rakings NJ PA NY HS+ 26 25 35 BA+ 6 28 10 Ad. degree 8 20 5
  • 82% rate workforce availability as critical or extremely important
  • Strengthening educational curricula Partnerships of educational institutions and employers are Creating and distributing new curricula for HS and college (Innovation Partnership Institutes) A project to strengthen co-op education and internships in key industries NJ received several federal grants to strengthen education and workforce programs to meet industry needs (WIRED) Training Existing Workers Matching grants to employers to develop the customized training workers need to be more productive.(NJ LWD) Improving Availability of Up-to-date Career Information A project to connect guidance counselors with up-to-date information on career information resources and the technology and training to help students and parents access it (Career Connections) Efforts are currently underway to document emerging skill needs of employers and to create effective plans for addressing these needs including,: Ready for the Job (RFJ) is a partnership of several state agencies that documents the emerging skill needs of employers in key industries and articulates a statewide plan for addressing these needs Industry workforce advisory councils provide guidance and input needed for RFJ and other efforts. These efforts also must be strengthened to ensure New Jersey’s economic future, which depends on the quality of education and training efforts available to current and future workers.
  • Current studies in Finance, IT/ Communications/ and Life Science
  • The New Jersey Workforce: Enhancing the State's Greatest Competitive Advantage in a Global Economy

    1. 1. The New Jersey Workforce:Enhancing the State’s Greatest CompetitiveAdvantage in a Global EconomyCarl E. Van Horn, Professor and DirectorJohn J. Heldrich Center for Workforce DevelopmentEdward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public PolicyDecember 2008
    2. 2. New Jersey WorkforceJohn J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development 2Workforce Quality is Key to New Jersey’sEconomic Competitiveness During the recession and beyond, New Jersey’sgreatest competitive advantage is its highly skilledworkforce Employers cite workforce issues as top concernsaffecting business success Globalization and competition present new challengesto employers Education and training need to be better aligned withemployer needs
    3. 3. New Jersey WorkforceJohn J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development 3New Jersey has the “Workforce Advantage”Sources:1. U.S. Census Bureau, American Community Survey, 2006 (through November for U.S.) and through October for NJ, PA, and NY2. Author’s calculation based on 2004-2014 labor force projection figures developed by the U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics(national) and each state’s department of laborNJ U.S. PA NYLabor ForceNumber1(in millions) 3.1 111.6 4.8 7Annual Growth Rate (2004-2014)21% 1% 1% 1%Education1Less than High School 14% 16% 14% 16%High School or GED 30% 30% 39% 30%Some college or Associates Degree 22% 27% 22% 23%Bachelors Degree 21% 17% 16% 18%Advanced Degree 12% 10% 10% 13%Income1(Figures rounded)Median Household Income $64,500 $48,500 $46,500 $51,500Median Per Capita Income $32,000 $25,500 $25,000 $28,000Diversity1Asian 8% 4% 2% 7%Black or African American 14% 12% 10% 16%Hispanic or Latino 16% 15% 4% 16%Foreign-Born 20% 13% 5% 22%Unemployment1Unemployment Rate 6.0% 6.7% 5.8% 5.7%
    4. 4. New Jersey WorkforceJohn J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development 4Employers Say New Jersey Workforce is aMajor Competitive AdvantageThe 2007 New Jersey Chamber of Commerce Survey of 135New Jersey employers found: Nearly 70% rate quality and availability of the workforceas major or minor positive factor to doing business inNew Jersey 86% rate workforce quality as a “critical” or “extremelyimportant” factor in making expansion decisions — morethan any other factor Nearly 60% say New Jersey is stronger in workforcequality than other locationsSource: New Jersey Economic Policy Forum (2007), C-Suite Survey: Overview of Survey Findings. Rutgers, TheState University of New Jersey: New Brunswick, NJ.
    5. 5. New Jersey WorkforceJohn J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development 5Top Concerns Affecting Business SuccessWorkforce is also a Top Concern ofNew Jersey Employers11% 16% 20% 18% 17%13%16% 20%33%4% 6% 8%2%2%8%7%0%10%20%30%40%50%60%LocalServicesLocal Taxes EnergyCostsStateRegulationsState Taxes HealthInsuranceCostsQuality ofApplicantsfor New orOpenPositionswith YourFirmQuality ofWorkersCurrentlyEmployedwith YourFirmSecond most important concern Most important concernSource: John J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development (2006), New Jersey Employer Survey. Rutgers, TheState University of New Jersey: New Brunswick, NJ..N=300
    6. 6. New Jersey WorkforceJohn J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development 6Challenges to New Jersey’s CompetitivenessPosed by a Global, Innovation-based Economy Employers have moreoptions for finding skilledworkers around the world Skill requirements of jobsare increasing andchanging rapidly Workers must engage inlifelong learning
    7. 7. New Jersey WorkforceJohn J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development 7New Jersey Must Better Align Educationwith Employer Skill NeedsIn a global, competitiveeconomy, New Jersey mustcontinue to invest and planfor employers’ current andfuture workers.
    8. 8. New Jersey WorkforceJohn J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development 8Steps to Improve Workforce Preparationin New JerseyStep 1Develop enhanced labor market informationStep 2Provide enhanced informationto job seekers and studentsStep 3Develop partnerships betweenindustries, educationalinstitutions, and the workforcedevelopment systemStep 4Evaluate the strategies and use the feedback to strengthen the model
    9. 9. New Jersey WorkforceJohn J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development 9Efforts Underway to Address EmployerSkill Needs Must be StrengthenedPlanning and Strategy Efforts Industry Workforce Advisory Councils Ready for the Job Initiative HINJ Pharmaceutical Industry StudyImplementation Efforts Innovation Partnership Institutes High-Growth Workforce Investment Grants Verizon Career Connections NJNextStop.org Website Regional Efforts with Federal WIRED Funding (Bio-1, NJEIA,DVIN)
    10. 10. New Jersey WorkforceJohn J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development 10Summary of Key New Jersey InitiativesDevelopEnhancedLaborMarketInformationProvideEnhancedInformationto JobSeekers andStudentsCreateIndustry/EducationPartnershipsIndustry Workforce AdvisoryCouncils in Key IndustriesXReady for the Job Initiative XHINJ Pharmaceutical IndustryStudyX XVerizon Career Connections X XNJNextStop.org XInnovation Partnership Institutes X XHigh-Growth WorkforceInvestment GrantsXRegional Efforts with FederalWIRED Funding (NJEIA, Bio-1,DVIN)X X X
    11. 11. New Jersey WorkforceJohn J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development 11Industries Covered by State Initiatives Financial Services  Casinos/Hotels Communications/Information Technology Renewable Energy Life Sciences, includingHealthcare Advanced Manufacturing Transportation/Logistics/Distribution
    12. 12. New Jersey WorkforceJohn J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development 12Contact InformationFor more information, please contact:Carl Van Horn, Ph. D.Professor and DirectorPhone (732) 932-4100 x6305Fax: (732) 932-3454E-mail: vanhorn@rci.rutgers.edu

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