'Skills gap' leaves firms without wor...

'Skills gap' leaves firms without worker pipeline

There are 39 comments on the Boston.com story from Jun 30, 2011, titled 'Skills gap' leaves firms without worker pipeline. In it, Boston.com reports that:

John Russo's chemical lab in North Kingstown has been growing in recent years, even despite a deflated economy, and he expects to add another 15 to 20 positions to his 49 employees over the next year.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Boston.com.

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Since: Aug 10

Decatur, GA

#1 Jun 30, 2011
There used to be this thing in America called "on the job training." You start someone out with small tasks and teach them to do the jobs you need. There are some jobs that do require years of education and training, but for a great many the skills could be taught while that person is working in the field.

I was at a convention once and seated at a table with one of the senior editors of the Orlando Sentinel. He was probably in his 60's. I asked him how he got his job with the Sentinel. He said he's started as a copy boy when he was young. And he worked his way up to senior editor. He had no college degree, but he was quick to point out that these days the Sentinel wouldn't even look at an application that didn't boast a degree from somewhere.

I don't believe most people are so generally stupid that they can't grasp the concepts of many jobs if they were taught those jobs while working. Again, companies have lost the human aspect of employment. Sometimes all a person needs is a chance to succeed.
Wall Street Government

Vero Beach, FL

#2 Jun 30, 2011
With Bush's "Every child left behind" scheme, students are taught how to pass a test instead absorbing everything their curriculum has to offer.
sue

Wallingford, CT

#3 Jun 30, 2011
tidy catz wrote:
There used to be this thing in America called "on the job training." You start someone out with small tasks and teach them to do the jobs you need. There are some jobs that do require years of education and training, but for a great many the skills could be taught while that person is working in the field.
I was at a convention once and seated at a table with one of the senior editors of the Orlando Sentinel. He was probably in his 60's. I asked him how he got his job with the Sentinel. He said he's started as a copy boy when he was young. And he worked his way up to senior editor. He had no college degree, but he was quick to point out that these days the Sentinel wouldn't even look at an application that didn't boast a degree from somewhere.
I don't believe most people are so generally stupid that they can't grasp the concepts of many jobs if they were taught those jobs while working. Again, companies have lost the human aspect of employment. Sometimes all a person needs is a chance to succeed.
Exactly, about 20 years ago this went bad. I know a man that started out in the mail room and became president of a huge aerospace company. Then it was decided to take young people right out of college and put them in high level postions, they are cluless. This is how corporate greed entered the picture. I had a ceo that could not even open a cardboard box yet thought we could do the impossible. college trained idiots.
TedsLiver

United States

#4 Jun 30, 2011
Work is not the core competency of the Obama entitlement generation. They only know how to put their hand out.
WOODCHUCK

North Port, FL

#5 Jun 30, 2011
Disappearing Middle-Class Jobs

Wednesday, June 29, 2011Forbes



"The American dream is dead for the majority of America," financial guru Suze Orman told Forbes last year, speaking about her upcoming book "The Money Class."

The dream she was referring to isn't a Cinderella story. Rather, Orman believes the hope of someday owning a home, of working one job for life and retiring at 65 has been crushed by the financial crisis. "The middle class has disappeared," she said. "Many of the millions of jobs lost I don't think are coming back. I am really afraid for the majority of Americans today."

Are stable, well-paying middle-class jobs an endangered species? Economists say: Sort of.

"The idea that one can have a single-earner family, get a good job, keep it for life and have a comfortable living is all but gone," says Kevin Hallock, professor of labor economics and director of the Institute for Compensation Studies at Cornell University. "Long-term job stability is declining, and there aren't good unionized jobs like there once were."

CHANGE YA CAN BELIEVE IN!!...YES WE CAN!..MOVING FORWARD!!........this is it???
scout

Castro Valley, CA

#6 Jun 30, 2011
skills gap? Intelligence gap is akin to the grand canyon.
YouHelpFixIt

Scottsdale, AZ

#7 Jun 30, 2011
I think you will find that in many large corporations today the idea of a having a subject matter expert with years of experience from bottom to top is almost non-existent. This is a shame because experts can save you lots of money in avoiding costly mistakes.

This is the way I have seen it go. Initially consultants are only brought in to just advise on big decisions. They come and go with big changes. Then small segregated parts of the business are outsourced (to save money) to or spun off to make money or cut losses. Eventually day to day operations of at least part of the business is outsourced (maintenance, call center, IT ...).

Basically through each of these steps the company stops knowing how to operate and only knows how to manage the contractors who run operations. Upgrades, changes, and troubleshooting problems become more difficult because instead of relying on experts from within the company that can react quickly at the lowest level, management is reliant on the consultants advice that at best, was derived from the knowledge of the contractors who run operations and managed to effectively communicate it to them. At worst the consultants simply make it up, get it wrong because of miscommunication, or just use off the self advice.

Thus there is little to no pipeline for growing experience within some companies. Expertise in an area is often simply not recognized within a company. Your value is not recognized until you leave. One of the reactions to this is that many companies simply trade experts when they need a change (hire someone from another company that they think brings with them a great deal of knowledge). These often traded experts then become the consultants or go to work for a company that does the contracting. And they often bring their circle of competent coworkers with them.

There simply are not a lot of large companies anymore with paid internships, apprentices, mentoring programs, or even well defined career paths.

Since: Aug 10

Decatur, GA

#8 Jun 30, 2011
WOODCHUCK wrote:
Disappearing Middle-Class Jobs
Wednesday, June 29, 2011Forbes
"The American dream is dead for the majority of America," financial guru Suze Orman told Forbes last year, speaking about her upcoming book "The Money Class."
The dream she was referring to isn't a Cinderella story. Rather, Orman believes the hope of someday owning a home, of working one job for life and retiring at 65 has been crushed by the financial crisis. "The middle class has disappeared," she said. "Many of the millions of jobs lost I don't think are coming back. I am really afraid for the majority of Americans today."
Are stable, well-paying middle-class jobs an endangered species? Economists say: Sort of.
"The idea that one can have a single-earner family, get a good job, keep it for life and have a comfortable living is all but gone," says Kevin Hallock, professor of labor economics and director of the Institute for Compensation Studies at Cornell University. "Long-term job stability is declining, and there aren't good unionized jobs like there once were."
CHANGE YA CAN BELIEVE IN!!...YES WE CAN!..MOVING FORWARD!!........this is it???
And to think.... it all took place in less than a year and a half. Amazing that before then there were jobs aplenty, everyone had a home, and Wall Street wasn't crashing.

Instead of myopically focusing on this administration, WE should ALL focus on the many years it took to bring us to this pathetic point in our existence and all the mistakes that we allowed to take place. And we're still allowing them to take place and we'll allow them to continue until the floor drops out from under us because we don't know how to do anything but complain and vote for another idiot.

Shame on us. Our children and grandchildren are going to have a miserable existence.

Since: Aug 10

Decatur, GA

#9 Jun 30, 2011
YouHelpFixIt wrote:
I think you will find that in many large corporations today the idea of a having a subject matter expert with years of experience from bottom to top is almost non-existent. This is a shame because experts can save you lots of money in avoiding costly mistakes.
This is the way I have seen it go. Initially consultants are only brought in to just advise on big decisions. They come and go with big changes. Then small segregated parts of the business are outsourced (to save money) to or spun off to make money or cut losses. Eventually day to day operations of at least part of the business is outsourced (maintenance, call center, IT ...).
Basically through each of these steps the company stops knowing how to operate and only knows how to manage the contractors who run operations. Upgrades, changes, and troubleshooting problems become more difficult because instead of relying on experts from within the company that can react quickly at the lowest level, management is reliant on the consultants advice that at best, was derived from the knowledge of the contractors who run operations and managed to effectively communicate it to them. At worst the consultants simply make it up, get it wrong because of miscommunication, or just use off the self advice.
Thus there is little to no pipeline for growing experience within some companies. Expertise in an area is often simply not recognized within a company. Your value is not recognized until you leave. One of the reactions to this is that many companies simply trade experts when they need a change (hire someone from another company that they think brings with them a great deal of knowledge). These often traded experts then become the consultants or go to work for a company that does the contracting. And they often bring their circle of competent coworkers with them.
There simply are not a lot of large companies anymore with paid internships, apprentices, mentoring programs, or even well defined career paths.
Good post. This is so very true.

Since: Jan 07

Plymouth, PA

#10 Jun 30, 2011
"Wall Street Government"]With Bush's "Every child left behind" scheme, students are taught how to pass a test instead absorbing everything their curriculum has to offer.

I can't disagree there. The curriculum, such as it is, is now aligned with the tests. As we all know from having taken at least some standardized tests, there are reading selections after which there are a series of mainly objective questions. Consequently, the literature component of a standard curriculum is being diminished in favor of non-fiction articles, apparently chosen for their limited general interest and 7th grade readability.

In general history classes, the focus is more on the "global" community rather than the American experience. One such unit with which I am familiar, was on the "Industrial Revolution." This would have been jam-packed with information of about the development of the US as a manufacturing entity, innovative entrepreneurs, the role played by late 19th century immigration and the flaws in the system, such as the famous New York factory fire where many young women died because they were locked in the third floor of the factory building.In the curriculum I saw, it was all about industry in "emerging" nations and the need for "social justice."

The emphasis on "accommodations" for students identified as some class of special education and the policy of slowing down regular classes because of the policy of "inclusion" has put the skids on ordinary unit progression, resulting in minimal instruction for regular ed kids.

The emphasis on tests as the sole criteria for student success presumes that every student begins with the same abilities, initiative and environmental advantages. They are then "processed, assembly-line style" through the schools and the presumption is that everyone will be on the same page all the way through. Like most theories, it sounds good but does not bear out in practice. It is, however, very effective in providing huge gaps in student academic background and consequently, dumbs down the population.

There is a method to governmental madness.
sue

United States

#11 Jun 30, 2011
Education and knowledge is useless without wisdom. Knowledge is consciousness of the facts. Wisdom is knowledge in its application to necessity.
Son of Liberty

United States

#12 Jun 30, 2011
Between the Teachers Unions and the liberals, the school system does not teach anymore. They manipulate the system to force their benefits, then they babysit to pass the time and indoctrinate their views! Many have said teachers are leading the way to the downfall of our civilization. Education isn't even on the map!

“Your Own Peace Prize Inside”

Since: Mar 07

Hyannis, Mass

#13 Jun 30, 2011
Wall Street Government wrote:
With Bush's "Every child left behind" scheme, students are taught how to pass a test instead absorbing everything their curriculum has to offer.
Bush's NCLB plan was hijacked by the teachers Union and liberal supporters by taking out the "teeth" he wanted in it to be effective.
Blame the teachers Unions for avoiding accountability and responsibility.

“Your Own Peace Prize Inside”

Since: Mar 07

Hyannis, Mass

#14 Jun 30, 2011
Many people think they are "Owed" a living, take no responsibility for learning how to do a job/trade.
I have held a job since I was 15, through college (No sugar-daddy, grants or scholarships) a couple of loans (all paid back by me. Old school?
Yup, and proud of it.
Lance Winslow

United States

#15 Jun 30, 2011
No Child Left wrote:
"Wall Street Government"]With Bush's "Every child left behind" scheme, students are taught how to pass a test instead absorbing everything their curriculum has to offer.
I can't disagree there. The curriculum, such as it is, is now aligned with the tests. As we all know from having taken at least some standardized tests, there are reading selections after which there are a series of mainly objective questions. Consequently, the literature component of a standard curriculum is being diminished in favor of non-fiction articles, apparently chosen for their limited general interest and 7th grade readability.
In general history classes, the focus is more on the "global" community rather than the American experience. One such unit with which I am familiar, was on the "Industrial Revolution." This would have been jam-packed with information of about the development of the US as a manufacturing entity, innovative entrepreneurs, the role played by late 19th century immigration and the flaws in the system, such as the famous New York factory fire where many young women died because they were locked in the third floor of the factory building.In the curriculum I saw, it was all about industry in "emerging" nations and the need for "social justice."
The emphasis on "accommodations" for students identified as some class of special education and the policy of slowing down regular classes because of the policy of "inclusion" has put the skids on ordinary unit progression, resulting in minimal instruction for regular ed kids.
The emphasis on tests as the sole criteria for student success presumes that every student begins with the same abilities, initiative and environmental advantages. They are then "processed, assembly-line style" through the schools and the presumption is that everyone will be on the same page all the way through. Like most theories, it sounds good but does not bear out in practice. It is, however, very effective in providing huge gaps in student academic background and consequently, dumbs down the population.
There is a method to governmental madness.
Whoa! Lighten up. You're addressing a forum in which most participants can neither compose a sentence nor punctuate it.
Wall Street Government

Vero Beach, FL

#16 Jun 30, 2011
WeElectedABunchOfIdiots wrote:
<quoted text>
Bush's NCLB plan was hijacked by the teachers Union and liberal supporters by taking out the "teeth" he wanted in it to be effective.
Blame the teachers Unions for avoiding accountability and responsibility.
Of course it was. Now, what "dental work" was taken out by all those communist union teachers that otherwise would have been excellent?
A Nnoyed

Manchester, UK

#17 Jun 30, 2011
tidy catz wrote:
I don't believe most people are so generally stupid that they can't grasp the concepts of many jobs if they were taught those jobs while working.
I do.

If it's not unfathomable laziness, it's mind blowing stupidity.

Finding a prospective employee more qualified than a retarded chimp is harder than finding an unopened bottle of booze at the Kennedy compound.

I wouldn't be surprised if HR started trying other species. You'd have better luck in all likelihood.
Amber

Bronx, NY

#18 Jun 30, 2011
A Nnoyed wrote:
<quoted text>
tidy catz wrote:
I don't believe most people are so generally stupid that they can't grasp the concepts of many jobs if they were taught those jobs while working.

I do.
If it's not unfathomable laziness, it's mind blowing stupidity.
Finding a prospective employee more qualified than a retarded chimp is harder than finding an unopened bottle of booze at the Kennedy compound.
I wouldn't be surprised if HR started trying other species. You'd have better luck in all likelihood.
I hate to agree with you but you're right. I'd happily hire entry level employees, train them and promote from within; but when you give a test of general abilities and the candidate writes: "She say she have" what can you do with that?
That's not even a recent High School graduate; it's the grammer skills of people 25, 26, 27 years old.

“Your Own Peace Prize Inside”

Since: Mar 07

Hyannis, Mass

#19 Jul 1, 2011
Wall Street Government wrote:
<quoted text> Of course it was. Now, what "dental work" was taken out by all those communist union teachers that otherwise would have been excellent?
The concept of "merit pay" was just one of the ideas... you know the concept where you reward those that do better...
On the flip side, Bush wanted penalties for not doing well... Both were defeated by the Liberals and the unions.
So just how are you to get teachers to do better?
Without incentive to do better.
Without a penalty for doing poorly.
In Every other business, if you do well, you are rewarded, if you do poorly, you are either fired, demoted or passed over....
Wall Street Government

Vero Beach, FL

#20 Jul 1, 2011
WeElectedABunchOfIdiots wrote:
<quoted text>
The concept of "merit pay" was just one of the ideas... you know the concept where you reward those that do better...
On the flip side, Bush wanted penalties for not doing well... Both were defeated by the Liberals and the unions.
So just how are you to get teachers to do better?
Without incentive to do better.
Without a penalty for doing poorly.
In Every other business, if you do well, you are rewarded, if you do poorly, you are either fired, demoted or passed over....
We have that down here but it's all based on an FCAT score. So George's premise of rewarding good teachers and punishing bad ones were and are based on a test. Down here, we do the same but with the entire school, so the teachers, in effect are teaching students to pass a test instead of learning outside the box that our state has stifled our teachers with. It crushes Innovation. Principals and assistant Principals need to evaluate, just as teacher's do students. Teaching to pass a test is not getting better, it's getting worse.

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