The divide between what job seekers offer and what employers need continues to be a massive problem. Today, there are 7.5 million unfilled jobs and nearly 10 million people unemployed, in the U.S. alone. Students will enter a workforce where as many as 120 million workers in the world's 12 largest economies may need to be retrained or reskilled by 2022, according to a recent IBM report.
Labor market data has quickly emerged as an essential tool to help students, and job seekers more broadly, understand what pathways might be available to them, and the skills and experiences required to pursue those pathways.
Old industries are being disrupted, new ones are quickly emerging, and the future of work is uncertain to most people. One thing we know is true, the stakes are as high as ever for businesses navigating the new normal, and employers have become increasingly specific about the type of skills and talent they need represented in their workforce.
As students and job seekers navigate the job market, knowing what skills are in demand for the jobs and pathways they are pursuing is foundational knowledge to be successful in the job search process and, without that information, candidates are at a massive disadvantage. Historically, labor market data has been a missing component of the student experience - until now.
Earlier this year, uConnect partnered with Emsi to bring this critical data to the fingertips of students, faculty and staff through the career services office with the launch of its Labor Market Insights module ("LMI"). The module curates relevant labor market data visualizations, aligned to particular industries and occupations. Consistent with uConnect's other offerings, the data is visible and accessible to all students as well as the broader campus community, without requiring a log-in or any special access.
Schools like Arizona State University, SUNY Binghamton and Spelman College are among many that have adopted the LMI module - either showcasing the data through uConnect’s virtual career center, to wrap labor insights around all the career resources, connections and opportunities they already offer, or simply by embedding the data into their existing career center website.
As uConnect partners implement the new module, we’ve noticed several really compelling ways that career offices are using the data to inform and inspire students as part of career coaching appointments or career-related events and programs. We have also seen schools very intentionally, and effectively, encourage others in the community to share labor insights with students, from faculty and staff across campus, to parents and mentors. The result has been an immediate rise in the number of career conversations taking place in and around campus, and the strategic nature of those conversations, pointing toward skill-building, career readiness and the future of work. For schools using uConnect's virtual career center platform, it's also provided increased visibility into the other great offerings they have for students.
After diving deep with a few of our customer champions, we’ve compiled a mini-playbook to guide our partners on best practices for helping students leverage this data, and also to mobilize influencers in their campus community to do the same. The following exercise can be used in career advising appointments with students, but can also be used to guide students in the classroom or in more casual interactions. Lastly, we're increasingly finding that this data is powerful to helping alumni and recent grads navigate their own career paths, either through promotion from the career center or alumni relations office.
No matter how the data is shared, it has the potential to inform and inspire rewarding career pathways, for students and the broader campus community, at a time of increased uncertainty about how to navigate the future of work. Download the free guide below and let us know what you think!
Don't have the LMI module on your campus yet? Here's a link to a live example - if you're interested in learning more, send us a note at firstname.lastname@example.org or click on the 'Learn More' button in the top right-hand corner of our website and we'll get right back to you.
Watch a demo of the labor market insights module below: