Utah’s 1000-Day Workforce Development Plan

Created to support "Utah’s 1000-Day Economic Plan"
Written and approved in draft by the
State and Regional Councils on Workforce Services
April 2002 (updated 15 May 2002)

The Governor’s vision for economic prosperity is that quality jobs are available statewide.

Success is defined by three measures:

  • Job growth exceeds the growth of the workforce
  • Earnings outpace inflation
  • The benefits of economic prosperity are felt statewide

There are three strategies to realize this vision:

  • Invest in people
  • Develop Utah as a center for technology investment, employment, and entrepreneurship
  • Enhance life quality

An agile, innovative, and responsive workforce development system is a crucial component of this vision. Economic prosperity (of quality jobs available statewide) requires a planned, strategic, and united effort of education, economic development, and workforce services in order to equip Utah’s workforce with advanced and improved skills and to connect Utah companies with qualified workers.

The three goals that will move Utah’s workforce development system there are:

  • Maximize system responsiveness and efficiency
  • Augment the workforce with educated, skilled, and work-ready workers
  • Measure and market the workforce

Each goal has a set of strategies to accomplish it. These strategies form the heart of this plan.

Goal one: Maximize system responsiveness and efficiency

Workforce development is a responsibility shared by education, economic development, workforce services, and many other partners. The best possible system eliminates unnecessary duplication and fills important gaps so that people may maximize system options, and employers and job seekers know where to go for the services they require. Strategies include:

  • An immediate meeting of the major partners to identify, inventory, and resolve their key competencies and roles, system overlaps, and system gaps
  • Focus all system partners, including community-based organizations, to integrate and aim efforts
  • Integrate youth-specific career information services using the Board of Regents’ adviseutah.org and utahmentor.org Web sites as the springboards
  • Increase and continuously improve community/education/employer partnering at the local level

Goal two: Augment the workforce with educated, skilled, and work-ready workers

The chief customers of the workforce development system are employers and job seekers. The system is successful when: 1) The workforce is prepared for the jobs that are available and emerging, and 2) Employers and job seekers connect for their mutual benefit. Strategies include:

  • Continue to establish an accountability system (Utah Performance Assessment System for Students) which tests each student against definable standards and reports measurable results of schools and districts statewide
  • Double the number of engineering and computer science students by 2005
  • Create market-fast and competency-measured education
  • Increase partnerships between the system and employers
  • Develop work retention models and services (including GED completion) that give workers the workplace essential skills to be successful
  • Provide accessible, accurate, and quality supportive services to job seekers and workers
  • Promote quality and accessible child care and positive work/life workplace benefits
  • Educate employers about the value of hiring ethnic minority workers
  • Coordinate the Governor’s English skill building and cultural integration initiative

Goal three: Measure and market the workforce

The workforce development system must be able to measure the workforce and the demands for it. This means that the system will build an anytime, real-time management information capability that shows decision-makers where the skills gaps and surpluses are while also reporting the skills demographics of the emerging workforce. This will make it possible to package and market the workforce to the employers with good jobs, including those already here and those locating in Utah. Strategies include:

  • Build a workforce management information system that provides anytime, real-time data about the skills of the current and emerging workforce
  • Package and deliver the skill demographic information to employers
  • Package and deliver information about the future skills requirements of employers to the current and emerging workforce
  • Capture information about most high tech and high earnings jobs in order to connect qualified job seekers with them and to more accurately demonstrate that Utah is a high tech, high wage state