JANUARY 19, 2016
Detroit’s Untapped Talent

Signs of rejuvenation are clear in Detroit, just one year after emerging from bankruptcy. Over the past decade of working closely with key Detroit workforce providers and employers, Corporation for a Skilled Workforce has seen this turnaround first hand. Since our founding 25 years ago, CSW has been partnering with workforce providers, employers, and public sector agencies to design and implement more effective policies and programs for jobs seekers and workers.

The recent national focus on workers’ economic mobility and tangible career prospects is as vivid for Detroiters as it is for the rest of the nation. CSW was engaged by JPMorgan Chase in November 2014 to undertake a research effort to create a workforce system “map,” which would inform a comprehensive and data-driven understanding of Detroit’s workforce development assets, opportunities, and challenges. First, we explored the skills and educational attainment of Detroit residents. Then, we examined the job market to understand the structure and nature of employment opportunities in the city. Finally, we looked at service providers, programs and partnerships to understand the existing infrastructure and investments being made in education, training, and work-readiness services.

The results of this research are contained in CSW’s latest Detroit focused report, Detroit’s Untapped Talent: Jobs and On-Ramps Needed. Developed as part of JPMorgan Chase’s $100 million commitment to the city’s economic recovery, this report is the first of a two-part series detailing the findings from the research project conducted by CSW. It includes information about the complexities of Detroit’s resident labor pool, Detroit’s industry mix, and the mix of jobs and skills needed for the city to prosper. The research was used by the Detroit Mayor’s office to inform the development of the Mayor’s newly reconstituted Detroit Workforce Development Board. The second report (to be released in early 2016) provides an overview of Detroit’s workforce system infrastructure and capacity – a view essential to understanding how talent supply and demand work together in the city.

This research allows policymakers, civic leaders, and employers to better understand their workforce system assets and needs, and better align efforts to maximize the services offered to Detroit residents.

CSW’s work in Detroit builds on our commitment to working with community leaders in Michigan and around the country to engage community stakeholders around a common vision and set of strategies for collectively working toward more equitable employment and education outcomes for all residents. Our research and stakeholder engagement work in Detroit is an important part of how CSW is helping re-imagine systems that support work and learning and identifying new pathways for increasing economic mobility and prosperity for individuals and families.

For more information, see:

To view the report summary & download the PDF, click here.

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