Partnering with Employers to Promote Job Advancement for Low-Skill Individuals

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K. Martinson
Author(s) Organizational Affiliation: 
National Institute for Literacy
partnership, incumbent worker training, sectoral training
Number of Pages: 

Partnering with Employers to Promote Job Advancement for Low-Skill Individuals was rigorously reviewed and approved by independent experts prior to its publication. MPR Associates, Inc. and the Urban Institute produced this report under a contract with the National Institute for Literacy. Various economic factors present labor market challenges to both low-skill job seekers and the business community that needs a skilled work force. The issues are discussed in the beginning of the report and then various programs that address these issues are explored. Incumbent worker training, career pathways, bridge programming, industry–based certification and sectoral training are examined with specific program examples described. The strategies common to successful programs included:

  • Develop an understanding of employers’ workforce needs;
  • Emphasize issues important to businesses;
  • Carefully consider which industries and employers to include;
  • Obtain employer contributions to the project so they invest in the success;
  • Involve employers in the design and provision of the training;
  • Demonstrate the effectiveness of training to the employers;
  • Provide high quality services;
  • Develop stable funding sources.


Benefits and Uses: 

The reference section contains a wealth of scientific research supporting the methods described in this paper. The research presented is useful to agencies working with low-skill individuals, policymakers and businesses.

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