Staying Relevant, Being Informed

A recent study by the Center for PostSecondary and Economic Success found, not surprisingly, that the unemployment disproportionately affects lower-educated and minority racial and ethnic groups. You could probably add a variety of other groups to that list as well, particularly Veterans and individuals with disabilities. But who is not really the point, rather it’s the mere fact that unemployment has been so high for so long that studies like this actually mean something. And, in addition to the graphs on adults, at the bottom of the page there is also a link to a couple of charts on youth unemployment. View the study here.

But, that’s also why we have a public workforce system, to understand these types of realities and work to address them on behalf of those more disparately impacted. And it’s doing just that. More than ever before, we tout data analysis and research as the way to understand our customer base and more effectively engage with them. A 55-year-old former stay-at-home mom will look for work differently than a 25-year-old male high school dropout. And our ability to recognize and understand those differences, and then customize our services to meet their needs is one of the ways we remain a relevant and helpful public service.

The other side of the coin is working with our customers to empower them to be better, more informed job seekers by understanding the realities of the job market. There are many ways to do this, one of which is being familiar with the area in which you’re looking. Much of this type of information can be found here, on our County Narrative Profiles. These are written summaries that provide detailed information about geography, population, employment, income, education, housing,  healthcare, crime rates, etc., for every individual county in Texas. Helpful stuff if you’re thinking of moving, starting a business, or reentering the workforce after being recently separate from a job.

One thought on “Staying Relevant, Being Informed

  1. Gerry Fluharty July 11, 2012 / 9:05 pm

    Those are all good points Scott and the County Narrative Profiles give good quantitative information. What we are facing out in the field is that we now have customer segments that have always been around but that now we find that “One size does not fit all”. Employment services that worked in the past for all customers now have to be individually shaped for the various groups that we now serve (Gen-Y, Gen-X, Baby Boomers, and Echoes). Each group has distinct values and ways to learn and communicate. This is what we still have to have to research and do at the local level since there is no national or state model to follow.

    Scott – if there is any of that around at the state level – I’d be interested in following up any leads. Again – good article – it got my creative juice going and that’s hard to do 4 in the afternoon.


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