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9 U.S. birthrate will continue to fall. Because the U.S. birthrate DEMAND FOR A KNOWLEDGEABLE is slowing, the rate of growth for the American labor force is WORKFORCE shrinking at a time when the economy is predicted to grow at a relatively robust rate. This means that all sectors of the Knowledge across a wide variety of subjects is increasing economy--public, private, and nonprofit--will be compet- exponentially. Therefore, today, and even more so in the ing for a historically smaller pool of talent. According to the future, knowledge represents both power and competitive U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), "the annual rate of advantage. Successful public and private organizations will workforce growth for 2000 to 2010 is projected to be 1.1%, be those entities that ensure that their employees continue to but drops to 0.4% for the period from 2010 to 2020 and to learn as their professions and the tools of the profession 0.3% for the period of 2020 to 2030. In comparison, the civil- advance. ian labor force grew by 1.1% in the 1990s and 1.6% in the 1980s" (Where the Jobs Are . . . 2005). Since 1997, the ASTD has prepared a "State of the Indus- try Report" summarizing the trends in workplace learning and Scarcity creates value. A declining birthrate that causes performance. This report provides one of the most authorita- the labor pool to grow more slowly means that each individ- tive analyses of what is happening in the world of workplace ual in the labor pool is more valuable. It also means that the learning and performance. It provides data that state DOTs competition for these scarce resources will increase. can use to compare the state of their own training programs and accomplishments. Comparison data includes hours of The second factor, identified by all of the TRB studies development, cost per hour, and similar features. This report cited in chapter one, as well as in BLS analyses and studies also provides a special analysis of the "value added" to an conducted by the RAND Corporation, NAPA, and the Hud- organization by the public and private organizations who son Institute, is the impact of technology and innovation on have been recipients of ASTD's BEST Awards. It is worth the work process and therefore on the workforce. noting that ASTD now defines its world as "workplace learn- ing and performance." This lends further support to our con- The third factor is that the rate of change is predicted to tention that training and development are tools for enhancing continue to accelerate. individual and organizational performance. The complete Executive Summary of the 2005 report can be found in New products, services, and industries will be created, which Appendix C. The report concludes: will place a premium on having a highly skilled workforce. There will be an associated decrease in the demand for low- or As the ASTD State of the Industry Report enters its ninth con- unskilled workers as technology displaces workers performing secutive year of publication, we find ourselves in an exciting routine, replicable functions. period in the field of workplace learning and performance (WLP). The perception of the value of learning in driving organizational An example of this drive toward increased use of technol- performance is increasing, as is the level of investment in learn- ogy is that in the early 1990s there were just over one million ing. The learning function is being run like any other business function with increased attention to operational efficiency, computer programmers, computer systems analysts and man- accountability, and connection to organizational strategy. agers, hardware and software engineers and similar IT profes- sionals. Today, according to the BLS, that occupational cate- The 2005 report focuses on trends in the United States from 1999 through 2004, with projections for 2005, based on data submit- gory has well in excess of 2.5 million members. Between now ted through ASTD's benchmarking surveys (BMS), Bench- and 2012, BLS predicts an additional 179,000 jobs for com- marking Forum (BMF), and BEST Awards program. . . . These puter software engineers and an additional 103,000 jobs for three samples give the most comprehensive set of data available information systems managers (Where the Jobs Are . . . 2005). on both historical and current workplace learning and perfor- mance investments and practices in the U.S. This report serves as a barometer for the WLP community and provides data These trends "place a premium on workers who demon- against which organizations can benchmark their own learning strate strong abstract reasoning skills, problem-solving, com- investments and practices. munication, and collaboration skills. . ." as well as strong interpersonal and networking skills. It is no longer sufficient The entire report is available at for those with highly technical skills--engineers, scientists, rdonlyres/B5CF7620-FA40-4B3C-8E7C-FC1745A73B7A/ IT professionals, accountants, engineering technicians, and 0/ASTD_StateoftheIndustry_2005.pdf for ASTD members. construction trades--to rely solely on their technical skills. (Nonmembers can purchase the report through the ASTD They must also have the human interaction skills required by on-line bookstore.) the current and future workplace. These trends underscore the absolute demand for all organizations--public and Having provided an overview of trends that are affecting private--to provide training and development programs and the functioning of government and the state of workplace opportunities for their employees to ensure that they continue learning and performance, this report focuses its attention on to maintain their current capabilities and learn the new skills issues of importance for ensuring the appropriate infrastruc- and knowledge brought about by innovation with work ture for successful training and development programs within processes, tools, and products (Where the Jobs Are . . . 2005). state DOTs.