Workforce Development

A top priority of the nation’s governors is developing the skilled and knowledgeable workforce required for states to be economically competitive in the global economy. To achieve this, state workforce and education systems must be designed to provide the skilled workers employers need to thrive and the education and training individuals need to prosper in today’s labor market.

Given recent changes in the economy, the need to fill skill gaps and put Americans back to work has become even more critical to the well-being of state economies. Many workers lack the skills to get and hold jobs with earnings that allow them to be self-sufficient and advance economically. Addressing these and future workforce challenges in the changing global economic environment are critical concerns of governors. The NGA Center helps governors address workforce challenges through sharing best practices, providing technical assistance and convening state policymakers.

The NGA Center Economic Opportunities Division focuses on the following topics in Workforce Development:

  • Adopting innovative state approaches to increase postsecondary credential attainment;
  • Accelerating state adoption of sector strategies;
  • Supporting state acceleration of work-based learning strategies, including apprenticeship;
  • Assessing State Licensing Policy and Practice
  • Providing support to states on federal legislation; and
  • Supporting two national workforce associations.

The NGA Center also provides special ongoing technical assistance and information to states through the Workforce Development Technical Assistance Program (WDTAP). The services include a weekly e-newsletter, The Workforce Update; customized technical assistance; liaison with federal agencies; and staff support for two affiliate associations: The National Association of State Workforce Board Chairs and The National Association of State Liaisons for Workforce Development Partnerships.