Using Workforce Data Dashboards

I’m a member of my local workforce development board, the Alexandria-Arlington Regional Workforce Council.  I’m biased, but I think we do a pretty good job.   We’ve recently “upped our game” when it comes to publishing labor market data on our region.  We sponsored a good study on the regional labor market, and are also currently involved in developing our regional Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy.   I’m especially excited about the new data dashboards that Council staff are developing in cooperation with the workforce development team at Northern Virginia Community College.  The latest dashboard, for Q2 2017, examines recent trends with a special focus on what’s happening in our area’s “hot” fields of cybersecurity and data processing, hosting, and related services.   I’m a big fan of these dashboards as they are a quick read for local business leaders and elected officials, and they get a lot of public attention.  Lots of regions do them now, so I’m not sure this is a “best practice.”  But, if your local workforce people aren’t producing data in digestible bites like these dashboards, push them to embrace this concept.   In addition to learning from the team here in Northern Virginia, there are lots of other great resource groups such as the Labor Market Information Institute and the Community Indicators Consortium.

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