This week, the Council on Foreign Relations released an independent task force report explaining the challenges and opportunities facing the economy—and particularly the American workforce—as the world moves towards the future of work. Chaired by former Secretary of Commerce, Penny Pritzker, and former Michigan Governor and current Michigan State University President, John Engler, the task force’s report — The Work Ahead: Machines, Skills, and U.S. Leadership in the Twenty-First Century — takes an in-depth look assessing the current workforce landscape and proposes a number of recommendations both the public and private sectors can undertake around providing stronger connections between education and workforce, maintaining U.S. technological leadership, promoting growth, improving transition and mobility assistance for workers, removing barriers to opportunity, and protecting worker benefits. Credential Engine is proud to be noted along with the report’s findings and recommendations.
In the chapter “Education, Training, and the Labor Market,” the task force details how “the lack of accessible educational opportunities that are clearly and transparently linked to the changing demands of the job market is a significant obstacle to improving work outcomes for Americans.” The report goes on to emphasize that, “one big challenge is aligning credentials with employment opportunities. The current market for educational credentials is highly inefficient, with educational providers offering potential students a bewildering array of thousands of degrees, credentials, certificates, and other markers of attainment, often without any clear knowledge about the market value of these credentials.” They find that clear data is key to building strong links between education and employers and education and training providers—and that Credential Engine helps align credentials with employer needs by collecting and connecting key data points about credential offerings, “including cost to acquire, breadth of recognition, and comparisons to offerings at other institutions.” The report surmises that “employers, in turn, are [then] able to signal through the registry which credentials they are seeking from future job applicants. Over time, the goal is to produce rich data that allow potential students to assess the labor market value of the credentials offered by different educational institutions. The data will be open-source, allowing for the development of applications to connect credentials with local or sectoral labor market needs.” Through this sharing of open-source data, employers and educators will be better equipped to improve continuous learning pathways, which “will be critical to success in the workforce as the rate of technological change increases.”
Credential Engine looks forward to continuing to build the Credential Registry with data from the over 330,000 credentials currently available in the United States and giving organizations the information they need to navigate the future of work as students, workers, employers, or policymakers.
To read the full report and learn more about the Council on Foreign Relations’ research and recommendations into the future of the American economy and workforce, please click here.