Regardless of industry, workforce and talent have been driving forces in recent years. Thomas P. Miller & Associates believes this trend will accelerate in the next decade and continue to disrupt post-secondary education, workforce development, and talent sourcing.

Post-secondary education will increase its emphasis on adult learners in 2020. There simply are not enough young people coming out of high school and post-secondary institutions to fill open positions in the workforce.

Attracting and supporting adult learners, especially those who could more easily finish their degrees because they have completed some college courses, will be of utmost importance to higher education institutions wanting to remain relevant. For examples of what post-secondary leaders are thinking, check out

Thomas P. Miller & Associates anticipates employers placing even greater emphasis on skills and competencies in training, hiring, and advancement. Traditional talent sourcing and development relies on educational credentials and years of experience on the job; however, as the fight for talent rages on, employers increasingly see the benefits of skills and competencies.

Skills and competencies not only increase the pool of available talent but also open opportunities for workers who might not have been considered. Recent data shows objective assessments can reduce implicit bias in hiring.

Interestingly, record low unemployment has not produced significant wage growth. The disparities in employment and earnings, coupled with the gig economy and working conditions, have moved job quality and racial equity to the forefront of talent recruitment and development conversations.

While wages are a foundational piece of the job quality puzzle, they are not the only tool for improving the quality of work. In 2020, businesses will innovate to improve the quality of their jobs to attract and retain talent. Strategies may include apprenticeships, employee shared ownership plans, profit sharing, and investing in additional resources and benefits to improve the stability of workers’ lives and equal access to opportunity.