In a tight labor market, employers can attract talent with quality jobs designed with workers at the center
WASHINGTON, DC, March 29, 2022 — Today, the National Fund for Workforce Solutions releases a new guide to help employers win the war for talent and create better workplace culture for their employees. Designing a Human-Centered Workplace was developed for small and medium-sized businesses and is based on intense, on-the-ground practice with employers and workforce experts.
After a year of the fastest labor market recovery in history, there are still more than 11 million job openings. U.S. workers are resigning jobs at record numbers and searching for jobs at organizations where they are valued and supported. Employers can compete in this tight labor market by designing better jobs. The new guide will make it easier for employers to do that by offering a digital road map for winning the competition for talent and navigating the post-pandemic labor crisis.
“The best way to design better frontline jobs is to center the people who have those jobs,” said Tom Strong, director of employer activation at the National Fund for Workforce Solutions. “Employers who want to attract and retain workers should include them in efforts to improve and re-design their own workplaces.”
This human-centered design approach operates at the intersection of leadership, equity, and creativity. It is based on the idea that the people closest to a problem often have the clearest ideas about how to solve it, a well-established practice in business.
“We didn’t realize how important it is to engage the people who do the work in the decisions that will directly affect them,” said Morgan Cabral, vice president of human resources at Mahaney Group, a commercial construction company in Wichita, Kansas, with more than 150 employees. “Even the little things we tried were more impactful than what we’d done in the past. It took some time to build trust and understanding, but once we did, the result was phenomenal.”
The self-paced guide takes employers through the full human-centered design approach, from planning, to designing and testing solutions, to measuring business impact and outcomes. The result is meaningful guidance and practical tools for employers who are ready to center workers to create better jobs, build a more equitable workplace, and win the war for talent.
The National Fund for Workforce Solutions invests in a dynamic national network of 30+ communities taking a demand-driven, evidence-based, and equity-focused approach to workforce development. The guide was developed by the National Fund for Workforce Solutions in partnership with Design Impact, a social innovation nonprofit, with assistance from the Workforce & Organizational Research Center and support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.