Our attempts to decode the Future of Work are already proving a challenge. Witness concepts of the career, education and employment, which continue to evolve quickly alongside the nature of work itself.
Unfortunately, many changes have been bad news for workers.
When jobs aren’t being outsourced or taken by machines, employees see pay stagnation and a minefield of career killing missteps. The path to individual success is harder to find than ever.
Occupations and their associated skills were once easily defined and well understood. But in today’s corporate culture, skill sets are evolving faster than employers can label them or workers can learn them. We lack a common language —a way of thinking—that could help employers describe the qualifications that they need, and let employees develop the credentials to help them succeed.
Those looking for quick answers to the resulting skills gap have been disappointed. Skill requirements remain stubbornly difficult for governments to meet, and coherent strategies to address the gap are yet to emerge.
We need a detailed map of where we stand today, and definition of the skills and development techniques essential for a successful tomorrow. Even more, we need to tear down the outdated U.S. workforce development approach, and build in its place a nimble, responsive system which the American workers and economy need for the future.
It’s time to reestablish our sense of direction; to filter the noise around automation and other trends, and get answers to three essential questions to truly Decode the Future of Work.