Linking Workforce Development Efforts with Jobs and Commerce

Businesses depend on a skilled workforce but companies nationwide and in North Carolina have jobs they can’t fill due to the skills gap. In the NC Chamber’s Annual CEO Poll, business leaders identified workforce and education challenges to be the most important issue facing North Carolina businesses for the second year in a row.

Today, I presented to the N.C. Senate Workforce and Economic Development Committee on the importance of linking statewide education and workforce development initiatives with the jobs of today and tomorrow. Ultimately, if we want to compete in the rapidly evolving global economy, our state needs to develop a system that measures and trains for workforce needs for the future. The truth is: business in North Carolina and in every state across the nation is the number one consumer of educated talent. To say the least, business cares deeply and we are much invested.

North Carolina businesses are focused on achievement and outcomes to close the skills gap to ensure they have a qualified, competitive workforce. Across the state, businesses are leaning in and significantly investing to augment the skills and competitiveness of our workforce. Three specific examples that I included in my presentation include: NCWORKS Certified Work Ready Communities, Andrews Aviation Academy and the N.C. Triangle Apprenticeship Program.

Education, talent development and talent retention are vital for a secure future, economic growth and good jobs. We appreciate the focus of the Senate Workforce and Economic Development Committee on this and look forward to continued work with state leaders to better align and expand current workforce development initiatives.

Gary J. Salamido
Vice President, Government Affairs
North Carolina Chamber

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