"In today’s intensely competitive, technology-intensive global economy, employers require highly skilled workers to boost productivity, create new products and provide market responsiveness. At the same time, Pennsylvania’s workers, recognizing the demands of the new economy, seek opportunities to develop and improve their skills. To respond to this mutual need, Governor Edward G. Rendell, with guidance from industry leaders and the support of the Pennsylvania General Assembly, created and nourished a new workforce development policy tool known as Industry Partnerships.
Pennsylvania was one of the first states to extend training and career-building efforts beyond individual companies to networks of companies in specific industries. The Rendell administration understood that the lack of industry collaboration on training can result in a skills gap for businesses, an opportunity gap for working families and an innovation gap for many industries. [This resource explains how] building strong Industry Partnerships can bridge those gaps [by highlighting the impact of successful industry partnerships]" (p.3). (Abstractor: Author)
Major Findings & Recommendations
As a result of Industry Partnerships in Pennsylvania: • "There are more than 6,300 businesses involved in nearly 80 Industry Partnerships across Pennsylvania. • More than 70,000 workers have been trained since the inception of this initiative in 2005. • Workers who received training through Industry Partnerships saw their wages rise by an average of 6.62 percent within the first year after receiving training. • 88 percent of businesses in Industry Partnerships reported being very satisfied or satisfied with the program. • 84 percent of businesses reported Industry Partnerships and training have helped them significantly increase their productivity. • Industry leaders have contributed more than $9 million in private funds and more than $30 million in-kind contributions to support training and other initiatives identified through these Industry Partnerships” (p. 5). The report highlighted program impacts in key activities, including building career ladders, upgrading human resource practices and reaching out to diverse populations. For example, "the [Keystone Transit Career Ladder Industry Partnership] trained more than 2,800 transit workers and subsidized training for more than 6,000 vehicle technicians and facilities maintenance mechanics. Through the partnership, Pennsylvania’s transit agencies were able to reduce turnover and increase operational efficiency” (p.6). (Abstractor: Author and Website Staff)