While more than 12 million potential jobseekers are looking for gainful employment, on which many have given up and left the potential workforce, over five million skilled “openings” are unfulfilled, a number that is likely to expand during 2014. This problem is complicated not only by the need for sophisticated skills, such as those needed for aerospace, construction, engineering, robotics, and evolutionary communications, but by an Administration that manifests cluelessness in supporting accelerated training for such critical professions.
The problem only gets worse as the employment-critical independent businesses are shedding full-time jobs, to protect their bottom lines by trading full-time positions; and such benefits as health insurance for part-time workers that gain that status by being available for less than 30 hours a week.
While the Obamacare fiasco is discouraging future medical doctors, nurses, and other aspects of overall healthcare, many skilled “experienced” baby boomers are getting ready to retire.
Aircraft building giant Boeing expects 60,000 workers, including 8700 skilled machinists to be eligible for retirement by 2015. Employment experts expect that by 2020, about 75% of U.S. jobs, 122 million, will require advanced skills. It’s estimated that fewer than 100 million workers will acquire increasingly higher skills, many of which don’t even exist today. It’s expected that only 41 million low skill jobs will be available, and a total of 64 million workers able to fill them.
While budget cuts, and a general Administration disinterested in federal job training aggravate the skilled jobs shortage, an easing of the road to citizenship is putting increasingly heavy reliance on foreign workers. Depending on the H-1B visas for highly skilled workers may be of some help, but more often than not, those trained at prestigious universities will find it more expedient to return to China, India, Indonesia, etc., where increasingly higher paid professions are waiting for them in their native lands.
As the quickening pace of technology, and the creation of professional expertise to sustain the needed skills to fill these slots, corporations will be left to their own training program devices to accommodate this shortage.
What is most concerning is that the current government priority employment level focuses on unemployment compensation, food stamps, or higher national entry level wages. Until a federal leadership that understands the needs and numbers of skill levels, the current inadequate programs will stagger along without any meaningful approach toward resolving this critical problem.
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