Why Talent?  Why Now?

Greater Reading is looking to be home to the best and the brightest skilled talent to meet the needs of our growing companies and to attract new companies.  As a result, we recently hosted nationally known Janet Ady of Ady Advantage who shared with us a framework for addressing talent issues.  The strategy she presented has three fundamental components: 

Talent Retention and Development

Talent Attraction

Talent Automation  

Talent Retention and Development

One of the best ways to retain and develop talent is by using underutilized channels and identifying underrepresented community members.  

  1. Hire ex-offenders
  2. Pay for English as a Second Language courses
  3. Provide subsidized transportation to work 
  4. Provide soft skills courses

And once you have that new hire, make sure you can retain them – provide mentoring in the workplace for new hires, provide education opportunities

Image result for reading pa murals

Talent Attraction

Attracting talent can seem like a daunting task.  Locating the skills you want that talent to possess is a good place to start.  Hosting career fairs which highlight industries which need those skills and education can attract potential employees.  However, convincing those potential employees to move is another issue.  Focusing on the Quality of Place helps give people a reason to move into an area.  Even small initiatives can impact the overall area like:

  1. Provide amenities for outdoor recreation (basketball courts, tennis courts, etc)
  2. Be a green! Plant greenery throughout the community 
  3. Eliminate litter (everybody likes clean spaces!)
  4. Paint murals on public buildings (cool outdoor art space)
Robots

Parcel Robots working in a Chinese logistics plant

Talent Automation

By 2030, up to 15% of all hours worked could be automated by technology which currently exists today!  60% of all occupations could be at least partially automated with current tools, though less than 5% are at risk of total automation.  Does this mean we don’t need all this talent?  Just the opposite!  With automation, AI is projected to create more jobs than it destroys.  

 

Talent issues are not unique to Greater Reading.  In the short term, we will be proactive with our underrepresented populations.  Looking forward to the future, working in the community to attract new talent will be essential.  Automation can be a boon to our economy if we are out front with it.  

 

To learn more about Greater Reading and how we are attracting talent, check out corerdg.com