KGOU

workforce development

A new report from the Office of Workforce Development shows Oklahoma is on track to experience a shortage of nearly 20,000 workers next decade due to projected economic growth, high rates of retirement and a lack of local talent.

 

“It’s an issue of both not having enough people and then also not the right skills to replace people,” explained spokesperson David Crow.

 

Oklahoma’s population growth rate is at its lowest since 1990 according to new study from the Kansas City Federal Reserve. That’s because Oklahoma lost more residents to other states than it gained over the past three years, with college graduates leading the way.

Oklahoma State Capitol
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Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin has signed legislation that streamlines the composition of the Governor's Council on Workforce and Economic Development.

The bill signed Monday changes the membership of the council to give representatives of the private sector and business community a majority on the council, which will still receive input from state agencies.

The council is one of the main state bodies working to implement Oklahoma Works, Fallin's initiative to help boost educational attainment in Oklahoma.

Deidre Myers, Deputy Secretary For Workforce Development, Oklahoma Department of Commerce.
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At Oklahoma State University’s annual Economic Outlook Conference Tuesday, industry professionals criticized low teacher pay, but forecasted continued job growth in education and several other jobs through 2015.

The Oklahoma Department of Commerce’s Deidre Myers wants employers to think outside of basic qualifications during the hiring process.

Myers questioned the value of requiring applicants to have specific majors like economics or finance when looking for jobs in the business field. She says most jobs require analytic and critical thinking skills…rather than an expertise in a narrowly defined field.