The Workforce Information Council helps guide the development and improvement of the nationwide workforce and labor market information system. This system provides information on labor market trends and conditions, job outlook and wages, skill requirements of jobs, and a wide variety of other information that helps customers make decisions about their businesses, careers, training, and job search.
At this web site you can find information about the Council and its activities, about the workforce information system and about how to access workforce and labor market information for your local area, state, or the nation.
Information about the workforce, labor market, and careers in your local area, state, and the nation can be located by going to the workforce information portal.
Workforce Information Council to Meet on July 24-25 in Denver, Colorado
The Colorado Department of Labor & Employment will host the Workforce Information Council (WIC) federal and state members in Denver, Colorado for the Council's meeting on July 24-25, 2013. WIC Co-Chairs Thomas Nardone/BLS and Rebecca Rust/FL will lead the WIC agenda for the two day meeting.
The WIC has had a couple of departures from the membership since the February meeting - Dixie Sommers of the Bureau of Labor Statistics (who retired in late June after a career in both federal and state public service and also served as the first Executive Director to the WIC until 2006) and Iowa member Dr. Jude Igbokwe who has left the state agency.
A variety of topics are planned for the agenda. The council will discuss actions by the various policy councils from the BLS State Cooperative programs. Other topics on the agenda for the late July meeting include: Updating the Workforce Information System Plan for 2014; WIC Study Group Reports from the Customer Consultation, High Tech Taxonomy, and, Administrative Wage Records Enhancement; and, reports from key system partners (BLS, ETA, NASWA, C2ER, and Census/LED). The guest speaker will be Natalie Mullis, Chief Economist of the Colorado General Assembly, who will talk about how she uses LMI in her job.
WIC Technology Study Group Report
The Technology Study Group was chartered in November 2010 and is chaired by Todd Younkin of MT. The WIC Study Group has assisted the Workforce Information Council and state workforce information departments by promoting enhancements in the dissemination and use of the labor market information for a full range of customer groups through strategic application of technology.
The Study Group has helped recommend cost-effective and sustainable technology options to help states avoid undue duplication of effort for the workforce information system generally and the Workforce Information Council, particularly for the benefit of the state LMI offices. The Study Group has produced two reports - a Workforce Information System Technology Review issued in November 2009 and Report on the LMI Technology Forum held May 2011.
Released in February 2013, the WIC Technology Study Group issued the Report on the 2012 LMI Technology Survey, State LMI Office Use of Technology for Delivering Information. This report found that State LMI offices recognize that the Internet has changed the way the world gets its information and, as information providers, they have not kept pace with the changes in Internet-based technologies that have evolved in recent years. But they are not standing idle.
No fewer than nine states said they were in the process of redesigning and rebuilding their core LMI website, with many planned for launch in 2013. Many others said they would be developing dashboards, implementing interactive maps, working on data visualizations, implementing responsive web design, and exploring web services. Their plans include adding social media, interactive graphing, user customizable widgets, rotating slideshows of services, user registration, RSS feeds, icon-driven menus, mobile applications, script-based feeds and training videos. These actions provide the opportunity for states to share knowledge and resources to advance the information delivery effectiveness of the entire nationwide LMI system.
The report contains summaries of findings in topic areas covered by the 2012 LMI Technology Survey: Collecting User Feedback; Assessing LMI Users; LMI Website Development; Organization of Website Content; Website Features and Functionality; User Access to Data and Analysis Tools; User Customization and Communication; Web-Based LMI Dissemination and Marketing; Visual, Verbal, Interactive and Dynamic LMI; Social Media Policy; LMI Website Responsive to Mobile Devices; Mobile LMI Applications; and, Other Tools and Technologies in Use.
For more information on any of these projects, email email@example.com.
Oregon Job Vacancy Survey Results
With the various discussions by economists, educators, and labor market analysts as to whether there is a skills gap, skill mismatch, or skills shortage, the Oregon Employment Department has released a report on job vacancies in their state in July 2013 titled, Two Fifths of Oregon's Job Vacancies are Difficult to Fill. They report that more than two-fifths (44%) of Oregon's job vacancies in fall 2012 were reported by employers as "difficult to fill."
Major findings about Oregon's difficult-to-fill job vacancies include: Difficult-to-fill vacancies are more likely to require education beyond high school and much more likely to require previous work experience; Difficult-to-fill vacancies offer higher wages on average than vacancies that weren't reported as difficult to fill; The most common reasons employers cited for difficulty filling positions were: Unfavorable working conditions (18%); Lack of qualified candidates (18%); Lack of applicants (14%); and, Lack of work experience (13%).
Employers are looking for the "right" combination of education and experience for unique roles within their companies. This may provide a more difficult training challenge than if companies were looking for a large number of employees with essentially identical skills.
The education levels for which employers had the most difficulty were positions requiring associate degrees and positions requiring graduate degrees.
Health care had by far the most vacancies reported as difficult to fill. Manufacturing and trade, transportation, and utilities were also more likely to have difficulty filling vacancies.
More details are available and the complete report from the Oregon Employment Department, www.QualityInfo.org.
Customer Consultation Study Group Customer Focus Groups
Building upon work already completed through the report LMI Customers and Their Needs: Customer-Oriented LMI Product Innovation and the ForeSee Results website project, the Workforce Information Council (WIC) seeks to gather qualitative data about specific customers' uses of various LMI products and services. This assessment will also explore why potential customers may not use certain LMI products and identify LMI products and services that customers need but that are not generally available from public sources. To accomplish this, the Customer Consultation Study Group (CCSG) will work with the LMI Institute to conduct a series of in-depth focus groups with customer groups. In addition, the project will include a listening session with selected LMI Directors to discuss internal efforts within states to address concerns expressed during the focus group sessions.
A committee has been formed by the CCSG for this project. Committee members include: Sue Mukherjee (PA LMI Director and CCSG Chair); Rebecca Rust (FL LMI Director & WIC State Co-Chair); Anthony Dais (Employment and Training Administration); Frank Waligorski (Bureau of Labor Statistics); Steven Jost (Census Bureau); Don Wehbey (NASWA); Ron Kelly (C2ER LMI Institute); and, Gary Crossley (WIC).
The committee has tasked the LMI Institute to conduct focus groups with nationally representative samples of the following customer group types: Economic development professionals; Workforce intermediaries; and, Educators.
LMI Institute staff is currently working with national associations to establish appropriate opportunities for focus groups during national meetings or conferences and/or to engage in outreach for web-based focus groups. In addition, an initial LMI Director listening session was conducted at the BLS LMI Directors Conference this June in Atlanta, GA.
Workforce Information Portal
The Workforce Information Portal is an on-line resource, providing customers with a one-stop access point to workforce information sources on the web. The portal provides quick access to state on-line workforce information and career information sites, as well as national resources. This one-stop access point is especially important to customers who want information from more than one state, or are not sure where to go to get information for their state or locality.
The portal gives the customer different avenues to web resources: by type of customer (individuals, businesses, and researchers), by geography, or by agency. The site is at www.workforceinformation.org.