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New America Succeeds Report Reveals Importance of Durable Skills Training for Economic Success

October 28, 2021 by Anne Peasley

In continuation of our work with America Succeeds, Emsi Burning Glass has analyzed 82 million job postings through the lens of Durable Skills, which are in-demand across industries, occupations, and geographies.

The latest report based on this data, The High Demand for Durable Skills, highlights the importance of developing these competencies so students and communities can become more resilient in a rapidly evolving economy.

Read the full press release below.

Denver, CO. October 28, 2021America Succeeds partnered with Emsi Burning Glass, a leading provider of labor market data for education, to fully investigate the statistical evidence backing Durable Skills.

The analysis of over 80 million job postings uncovered the critical demand for Durable Skills training across industry sectors, occupations, and geographies, illuminating the current need to transform school-to-work pipelines.

“There’s a set of Durable Skills that last a lifetime — how you use what you know and how you operate in the world around you. Things like critical thinking, communication, your resilience, your self-awareness, your leadership — those are the skills that you carry with you from job to job and that you continue building on throughout your career,” said Stephanie Short, Vice President of Partnerships of America Succeeds.

Business leaders widely agree. The report launched with support from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, CompTIA, Associated Builders and Contractors, and Walmart.

America Succeeds’ data proves that these skills are anything but “soft,” as they are highly requested in job sectors across the United States. The data showed that:

  • Seven out of ten of the most requested skills in job postings are Durable Skills.
  • Employers seek these skills nearly four times more frequently than the top-five technical/hard skills.
  • Demand is greatest in jobs more aligned to the future of work:
    • 91% of management jobs, 86% of business operations jobs, and 81% of engineering jobs demand Durable Skills.
  • Jobs at greatest risk of automation in the near term have the lowest demand for Durable Skills.

Meanwhile, three major factors are in play — the country is moving away from an employer-based market, the labor market is experiencing its lowest participation since the 1970s, and the birth rate is declining — leading to a seismic shift for which business and education leaders alike should be preparing.

“Durable Skills are the first rung on a career ladder, and it’s true across all industries and geographies. Without them it’s simply impossible to advance beyond low-skill, low-wage jobs. If we are going to modernize and diversify the school-to-work pipeline for the jobs of tomorrow, we have to ensure these skills are thoroughly embedded in every student’s K-12 experience,” said Tim Taylor, Co-founder and President of America Succeeds.

Backed by data, The High Demand for Durable Skills report offers suggestions on how communities can begin to embed Durable Skills in K-12 education for the benefit of students, employees, employers, and communities. America Succeeds continues to work alongside federal, state, and local efforts to better prepare future generations of talent while aligning with workforce and hiring needs.

About America Succeeds

America Succeeds is a national nonprofit committed to engaging business leaders in improving equity, opportunity, and outcomes in education. Across industries, employers and our business partners have long advocated for the importance of soft skills alongside technical expertise.

We believe the purpose of schools today is to ensure students can think critically and creatively, collaborate effectively with others, apply skills and knowledge to solving real problems, and find meaningful, fulfilling ways to contribute to the world and their community.

About Emsi Burning Glass

Emsi Burning Glass is the world’s leading authority on job skills, workforce talent, and labor market dynamics, providing expertise that empowers businesses, universities, and governments to find the skills and talent they need, and enables workers to unlock new career opportunities. With engineers and data specialists continually collecting and analyzing data from thousands of job boards, company websites, online resumes, employee profiles, and traditional government sources, the company produces the most comprehensive, up-to-date picture of the labor market available.

Emsi Burning Glass market research, analytical software, and data expertise is used by companies across the globe to better understand their own workforce and identify skilled and diverse talent for future growth. The company also guides colleges and universities in connecting their programs to the needs of the local labor market, and advises government entities in creating more effective programs for economic prosperity. Headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts, and Moscow, Idaho, Emsi Burning Glass is active in more than 30 countries and has offices in the United Kingdom, Italy, New Zealand, and India. The company is backed by global private equity leader KKR.

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