Greensburg Daily News, Greensburg, IN

Columns

July 30, 2013

Blame employers, not workers, for 'skills gap'

(Continued)

Since the crash of 2008, those idled by layoffs flocked to community colleges, trade schools and anywhere they might get extra training to be competitive in an economic system stacked against them. Then a funny thing happened. Graduates took their new knowledge to employers, who said, “Oh, I see you’ve learned A, B, C and D. That’s impressive, but we need E. Sorry.” So they probably ended up going to the pizza joint only to be told they were overqualified.

But forget picky employers and low wages for a moment. The real lie behind the skills gap myth is in the area of training. It’s way past time for employers to do what they once did -- offer on-the-job training. How many potential workers would show up for a manufacturing job if it was advertised at $25 to $30 an hour with full benefits after a 120-day training period that would pay $10 an hour? I’ll bet you couldn’t see the end of the line.

It’s not a skills gap. We’re all capable of learning jobs with training. And it’s not lazy workers. It’s training. Businesses want to pass these financial burdens onto individuals and schools to learn the ever-elusive E. Then employers will require F. Even with wages at rock bottom, companies won’t spend to train.

In Indiana, we’re looking at a training program that would combine a high-school education with on-the-job training. It’s modeled on a successful program in Germany (where economics, for the most part, are done right).

But here’s the kicker. In Germany, businesses pick up 75 percent of the training costs. So it remains a pipe dream in the U.S. where businesses are allowed to do anything they want to increase their profit as if nothing else mattered. In the U.S., it’s easier to blame shiftless workers and let jobs languish than for employers to pay for the necessary training.

Stephen Dick is a columnist for CNHI News Service. He can be reached at steve.dick@heraldbulletin.com.

Text Only
Columns
  • Getting on with the program Now that the fair has been written in the history book, it’s time to get on to more Extension Homemaker News. But first, I would like to extend thanks to Eileen Fisse for the wonderful job she did for the Open Class exhibits. The building looked nice

    July 30, 2014

  • Pat Smith: An actor's life Chances are that Ben Tebbe would have been successful anyhow but it’s refreshing that he remembers who gave him a chance. No doubt, Karen (Clemenson) Hoak would have been proud of what he has accomplished since she gave him a part in a Tree County Pl

    July 30, 2014

  • Spaulding Outdoors: The Inside on Indiana's Outside Nature’s BountyOur daughters were raised in the country and definitely couldn’t be considered “citified” children. Not with Dad around! From the time I was a little boy, I learned there are a lot of good things coming from the wild, and I set about e

    July 29, 2014

  • Word of advice So, what’s the word?Really, what is the word? With over 250,000 words in the English language, you’d think there would be a word for just about everything. Not so. Therefore, I am on a crusade to find a term for some everyday occurrences for which th

    July 29, 2014

  • 9/11 Commission chair scolds Congress for national security failures INDIANAPOLIS – Retired Congressman Lee Hamilton has warned of the perils of political ideology, calling the body where he spent 34 years “noxiously partisan.” Now, he worries the divide is downright dangerous. A co-chairman of the 9/11 Commission, Ha

    July 29, 2014

  • Brian Howey: Rising up to meet Putin's thuggery BLOOMINGTON – Any illusions I had about the progressive nature of the Vladimir Putin’s Russian regime quickly dissipated when I returned to my Moscow Grand Marriott room in August 2007. Upon opening the door, I was greeted with the spectacle of my pa

    July 29, 2014

  • Pat Smith: A reader's special note Before beginning this week’s column it must be stressed that I love getting emails from readers, love getting telephone calls from readers and love seeing readers when I’m out and about – especially those who very generously tell me that they read th

    July 24, 2014

  • Spaulding Outdoors: The Inside on Indiana's Outside Early Migratory Bird 2014 Season Dates The 2014 early migratory bird season dates have been submitted to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service by the Indiana DNR as listed below. The dates are not final until the USFWS approves them, which typically hap

    July 24, 2014

  • Why incumbents get reelected Incumbents are masters at posing as outsiders, when in fact they are insiders who produce the Congress they disdain. It’s no news that Congress is unpopular. In fact, at times it seems like the only real novelty on Capitol Hill would be a jump in its

    July 24, 2014

  • Lessons from the largely forgotten war As we approach the official date on which the First World War started, July 28, 1914, when the first shots were fired by the Austro-Hungarians who invaded Serbia, it’s appropriate to think about the lessons that catastrophic event has taught us one h

    July 24, 2014

Featured Ads
AP Video
Obama Chides House GOP for Pursuing Lawsuit New Bill Aims to Curb Sexual Assault on Campus Russia Counts Cost of New US, EU Sanctions 3Doodler Bring 3-D Printing to Your Hand Six PA Cops Indicted for Robbing Drug Dealers Britain Testing Driverless Cars on Roadways Raw: Thousands Flocking to German Crop Circle At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey Raw: Obama Eats Ribs in Kansas City In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast Raw: Otters Enjoy Water Slides at Japan Zoo NCAA Settles Head-injury Suit, Will Change Rules Raw: Japanese Soldiers Storm Beach in Exercises Raw: Weapons Fire Hits UN School in Gaza Raw: Rocket Launches Into Space With Cargo Ship Broken Water Main Floods UCLA Two Women Narrowly Avoid Being Hit by Train Crayola Announces Family Attraction in Orlando
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.