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February 8, 2019

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Gallup Says Changes in the Workforce are "Historic and Monumental"

Regional secondary and postsecondary institutions are producing too few students with the credentials (certificates and degrees) needed in many high-demand technical fields - e.g., only 3.3% of all certificates and associate degrees and 2.6% of all bachelor's and master's degrees awarded in 2015 were in Computer & Information Science.[1]

According to Gallup's third State of the American Workplace Report,[2] "the changes that are affecting organizations today are coming fast and furious. They are overlapping and colliding in ways they haven't before."[3] Skilled workers are also highly mobile individuals. Gallup found that 35% of those polled had changed jobs in the last three years and 91% had left their current company to do so. Fifty-one percent are actively considering a move.[4]
The consequence of these changes is that organizations must consider how to manage and optimize performance with increasing numbers of disengaged employees who are ready to move on to the next job. At the same time, such conventional workforce fundamentals like how, when and where people work, along with what value they place on that work, is shifting[5].
While the competition for highly skilled employees, such as Information Technology (IT) professionals, remains intense, it's not just the highly skilled who are impacted by the changing workplace. Gallup points out that despite the current high number of job openings, low skilled workers are increasingly dropping out of labor force in "alarming numbers".[6] Gallup says:
Considering these realities, it's clear why people in the U.S. continue to drop out of the labor force in alarming numbers. In some cases, they can't find a job or the right job, and in other cases, they can't find a job that pays enough to justify incurring other costs that sometimes go along with working, such as child care or transportation. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that the percentage of the total U.S. adult population that has a full-time job has been hovering around 48% since 2010 - the lowest full-time employment level since 1983.[7]
Stark County fairs better with 63.1 % working full-time, even with 21.6% of the adult population not working at all last year.[8] Though employee engagement -meaning those who love their work and strive to improve their organizations and the country - remains low at 33%, there is some good news. Since Gallup's last study in 2012, engagement has increased 3%. 

[1] Team NEO (2018). Aligning Opportunities In Northeast Ohio A Resource To Aid In Addressing The Demand And Supply Imbalance In The Region's Workforce. p.4. Available at:
[3] The State of the American Workplace, p.4.
[4] Ibid, p. 17. Gallup collected from over 195,000 workers in multiple industries.
[5] 43% of those polled now work remotely.
[6] Ibid, p. 15
[7] Ibid, p. 15
[8] S2303 Work Status in the Past 12 Months 2017 American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates
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The Stark Education Partnership - a 501(c)3 non-profit organization in Stark County, Ohio -  is a catalyst, engaging and collaborating with education, business, civic and community stakeholders to drive sustainable improvement and innovation to provide all students with education and career success.  

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