A panel of experts at RAND discussed changes in the U.S. economy and findings from a survey that asked more than 3,000 Americans about issues they face in the workplace. Frequent hostility, rising inequality, slow wage growth, and changes in the demand for certain skills are some of the issues affecting workers.
In an economy that increasingly values ideas over tasks, companies are breaking down office walls, scrapping the idea of a nine-to-five, and doing away with cubicles. A RAND project shows how a modern workspace can be conducive to both collaboration and individual work.
Workers are experiencing high levels of hostile behaviors at work. Nearly one in five American workers have been subjected to some form of verbal abuse, unwanted sexual attention, threats, or humiliating behavior at work, with younger non-college educated workers bearing the most risk.
Autonomous vehicles are projected to hit American roads within the next few years. They promise safer transportation, greater mobility for millions of Americans, and other benefits. But they will also have enormous impacts on the workforce.
The Individual Placement and Support model, which helps people with severe mental illness gain employment, has been a major statistical success. Why does it work and how it might be applied to other vulnerable populations?
Ensuring the strength of U.S. armed forces is critical to U.S. national security and the key source of strength is its people. True investment in personnel is a long-term legacy and an investment worthy of attention and policy debate to ensure the United States continues to recruit and retain the most effective fighting force in the world.
Travel and tourism jobs in California often serve as an entry point for those outside the paid labor force. Nearly 55 percent leave the industry within a few years, some of whom move to another industry but keep the same occupation. Others change occupations as they change industries.
The work-life balance proposal has a chance of having an impact on the labor markets and welfare systems in Europe. However, given the variation in policies across member states and levels of political support among key stakeholders, the proposal may end up stuck in negotiations.
Many of the occupations with the most opportunities require two-year degrees or certificates. Community colleges play a key role in training students for these jobs and offer a supportive environment for displaced and dissatisfied workers.
Despite the good intentions, pressuring companies like Carrier to keep jobs in the U.S. addresses only the smaller part of the problem, globalization, not the larger one, technological change. A long term solution would be to upgrade the education and training system so that students graduate with skills for life-long learning.
Increases in the UK national minimum wages have not had adverse effects on employment overall. But it's important that the new national living wage and minimum wage aren’t increased to a point that is unsustainable for businesses.
Making America competitive in a transitioning market will require examining future labor market requirements. Workforce development programs that target building labor capacity for a new economy will be essential.
While more needs to be done for those who once worked in industries such as furniture manufacturing, where essentially all activity has moved to lower-cost nations, the U.S. is starting to see an increase in manufacturing activity because of new types of technological advances.