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|Wednesday, June 9, 1999 |
Tommy G. Thompson
News Media Contact
DWD News Office
Job Centers offering resume system to help
state businesses identify skilled workers
MADISONState workforce officials today announced that Wisconsin Job Centers are offering an electronic resume system to help state businesses identify and recruit skilled workers.
Americas Talent Bank is a nationwide electronic resume system that is part of the web-based Americas Job Bank. It is a key labor market system provided to jobseekers and employers through the states 76 job centers. At no cost, job seekers may market their qualifications by entering their resumes directly into the Talent Bank Network and employers can access the system to locate job candidates.
The system supplements the Wisconsin developed and operated JobNet, which lists job openings posted by state employers.
The resumes listed on America's Job Bank contain candidates with a wide range of skills and experience in all types of employment fields. By accessing the network, Wisconsin employers will have access to a national audience of over 710,027 registered jobseekers.
"The future growth of our state is directly tied to the level and quality of the workforce," said Linda Stewart, Secretary of the Department of Workforce Development. "In todays tight labor market, companies need to be creative and use our Job Center resources to find the skilled workers they need."
Over the past decade, the key to the state's success and financial growth has been the ability to attract new and diverse businesses and the ability of existing businesses to expand. However, one of the most important factors in the growth of the state's businesses has been the availability to employ a skilled workforce.
A recent study issued by the Department of Workforce Development (DWD) projects that the state will experience a potential worker shortage of 168,500 workers. This means that employers will need to search outside of the state to recruit skilled workers. The study indicates that each year, there will be approximately 103,625 full- and part-time jobs open for immediate hire, and that more jobs will require skilled training or work-based learning.
The demand to fill positions is accentuated by the fact that Wisconsins population is expected to increase at a slower rate than the national average while the older population will increase at a rate faster than the national average. Between 1990 and 2006, the number of workers in the 45-54 age group is expected to increase at an annual rate of 2.8 percent, well above the overall labor force growth rate of 0.8 percent. This will create an even more acute shortage of technically trained workers in the years ahead.
As the nation becomes more dependent on computers, employers will be more likely to use systems like America's Job Bank because it's easier and less expensive to find qualified employees.
In addition, jobseekers whose resumes are in this system benefit from exposure to the jobs that employers never publish, which is estimated as 80% of the job market.
"The electronic resume service is a valuable workforce development service, benefiting all Wisconsin employers and jobseekers," said Linda Stewart. "It will allow Wisconsin companies to conduct a nationwide search for skilled workers -- the information is right at their fingertips."
Employers can search resumes in a variety of ways, including the use of "skill words" on the Talent Bank system. The system will retrieve all resumes containing key words, regardless of where they are used in the resume. An advanced search capability allows employers to search by specific criteria, such as the location, education, job duration, and maximum salary requirements.
A menu search is also possible, starting with 22 broad occupational areas, and the search may be refined to a more specific occupational group.
A human resource director, for example, can enter position requirements into the system. Resumes with key words matching the position criteria then are automatically compiled by the on-line service. The director then reviews the resumes, selects a list of candidates to interview, and instructs the system to contact the resumes author via e-mail.
"Workforce issues are not going to disappear on their own, and we need to work hard to devise new strategies to provide our business sector with a skilled and talented workforce," said Stewart.
The state is taking additional measures to address the issue of a skilled labor shortage. Last fall, Governor Tommy G. Thompson appointed a Task Force on Technical Education to develop solutions to the workforce needs of businesses around the state. In its report, the Task Force recommended increasing the amount of technical education at all levels of instruction through the creation of technical education standards for all K-12 school districts, and advised making technology a core competency at all state technical colleges and university system programs. The report also called for: the creation of a Joint Council on Work and Education; maintaining and expanding employer training grants for hiring youth apprentices; and recruiting businesses associations and labor organizations to join with state government and the post-secondary institutions in a campaign to promote technical education and careers.
In addition, Governor Tommy G. Thompson has proposed expanding the states Youth Apprenticeship program to 5,000 students by the 2000-2001 school year, up from the current 1,314.