Last month, the Governor of Indiana signed IN S 301, which will require the Department of Workforce Development (DWD) to produce an occupational demand report. The report will show Indiana’s expected workforce needs over the next decade, as well as the education and training necessary to meet those needs.
The occupational demand report will categorize workforce needs and training requirements by job classification, for both the state as a whole and designated regions. DWD will have to submit the report to relevant stakeholders by July 1, 2016. Once released, the report will be used to align secondary and postsecondary career, technical, and vocational education programs with workforce needs.
This report will not be the first time Indiana has analyzed whether its occupational supply meets demand. In 2014, the Indiana Career Council released a Demand and Supply analysis in order to create regional workforce policies. That report demonstrated that the state might benefit from more information technology, healthcare, and manufacturing training programs.
WDQC applauds Indiana for moving one step closer towards achieving the Industry Skills Gaps element of our State Blueprint for strong state data systems. That element encourages states to assess the alignment between education and workforce programs and labor market demand to ensure that individuals are prepared for jobs that require skilled workers. Last year, Indiana reported that they were “In Progress” towards achieving this measure.
Once achieved, Indiana will join ten other states who reported having “Achieved/Mostly Achieved” this measure. These states include Florida, who will publicly release The Florida Occupational Supply/Demand System in the fall. The system will allow users to access comprehensive job opening information, as well as information on graduates and job seekers, in order to create standardized and customizable reports about how the two align. Washington State also compares the annual supply of workers to demand, based on data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Occupational Outlook forecast. You can read more about Washington’s process for conducting Supply/Demand analysis in the National Skills Coalition’s report “How Many More Skilled Workers Do We Need?”