- Ohio will soon reimburse employers that pay for employees to earn industry-recognized, technology-focused credentials. Gov. Mike DeWine, R, signed House Bill 2 Jan. 13, creating the TechCred and Individual Microcredential Assistance Program (IMAP).
- For the TechCred program, "the state will provide up to $2,000 reimbursement per employee and up to $30,000 per employer in each application period," according to Ohio’s Development Services Agency. For educating individuals in IMAP, "with a focus on helping low-income, underemployed or unemployed individuals, "training providers may seek up to $3,000 reimbursement, Ohio House of Representatives democrats said in a statement.
- The agency is accepting applications for TechCred through Jan. 31. The program’s website states that availability of funds and timeline for future open application periods will be based on demand. "By investing in job training, we are investing in Ohio’s future,"Rep. Michele Lepore-Hagan, D, said in a statement. "Connecting workers with [the] training and credentials program allows them to succeed in a constantly changing global economy.”
For companies to stay competitive in a tech-driven landscape without displacing workers, upskilling employees across industries has become essential, according to research.
A July 2019 Indeed report found that in traditionally non-tech industries, the demand for tech jobs is rising. Industries considered non-tech, including finance, retail and energy, have seen rapid growth in jobs involving "development or direct application of software, computers, or other information technology tools," the report said. The data also showed that tech-focused companies are still hiring a good deal of tech workers, with software developer listed as the top in-demand job.
Likewise, a 2018 McKinsey & Company report, suggested that through 2030, time spent using advanced technological skills will increase by 50% in the U.S. According to researchers, "the adoption of automation and AI technologies will transform the workplace,"which will change the skills required of human workers.
Workforces with the required skills would "ensure that our economies enjoy strengthened productivity growth and that the talents of all workers are harnessed,"researchers said.
Paul Mumma, CEO of Cerego, recently told HR Dive that AI technologies can be used to upskill employees. "In the next year, we'll continue to implement AI that increases human potential through L&D programs," Mumma said. "For example, AI enables people to learn at the best of their capacity. It's easier for a computer to implement practices like precisely spaces repetitions, or frequent testing, than it would be for a human to self-implement these reminders."
As Ohio’s TechCred encourages, many businesses already are heavily investing in tech training. For example, Amazon announced in July 2019 that it will spend more than $700 million to upskill 100,000 U.S. employees from all backgrounds and Amazon locations for in-demand jobs by 2025. Over the past five years, the company’s fastest-growing, highly skilled occupations were data mapping specialist (832% growth), data scientist (505%), solutions architect (454%), security engineer (229%) and business analyst (160%).