Designing a 'Good Job'
The National Fund’s Job Quality Initiative works with community and business leaders to improve the quality of American jobs. In partnership with its network of regional collaboratives, the National Fund is researching and promoting hiring, training, and workforce practices that improve firm competitiveness and job quality.
What does a quality job look like? The below graphic offers an array of components that can be used to create a dynamic definition. It is more of a menu than a mandate. Every element may not be relevant for every job, business or its workforce. When considering how to re-design a job, employers should consider their unique culture and needs and discuss interventions with frontline workers to identify the most impactful changes. This framework was developed by National Fund Senior Advisor Steven Dawson and originally published in Now or Never: Heeding the Call of Labor Market Demand by the Pinkerton Foundation.
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Numerous factors—wages, supervision, benefits, culture—contribute to a good job and each worker or companies might value a different set of items; however, the National Fund seeks to isolate specific practices that improve the conditions of workers and the performance of companies. The Job Design Framework seeks to outline the various elements of a good job.
Thousands of American companies are leveraging the skills and talents of their employees by offering a quality job; however, too many businesses are missing out on the extra value their employees could provide if offered more supported or engagement. The National Fund and its partners have researched and documents dozens of companies across sectors to understand how these companies strengthen their operations by investing in their employees.
Company Case Studies:
The National Fund and CareerSTAT have developed long-form case studies on the following organizations to analyze specific practices that improve job quality.
- Optimax Systems: Business Logic of Continuous Learning (Ontario, NY)
- Mercy Health: Using Evidence to Drive Hiring and Advancement (Grand Rapids, WI)
- Norton Healthcare: Integrating Workforce Investments with Business Impact (Louisville, KY)
- Universal Woods: Business Logic of Trust (Louisville, KY)
- Connecting the Dots: A Case Study of Transforming Care and the Frontline Workforce at UnityPoint Health-Des Moines (Des Moines, IA)
- The National Fund and the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City – Investing in America’s Workforce: How Employers Create Good Jobs to Maintain Their Competitive Advantage
- Best Practices for Investing in Frontline Healthcare Workers (four-part series)
- Solving the Software Development Pipeline Crisis: Using Apprenticeships to Develop IT Talent
CareerSTAT Employer Champions:
The National Fund has profiled 36 healthcare organizations that have been recognized for their exemplary investments in their frontline workers.
Young Adult Employer Champions:
The National Fund has recognized 33 companies that make specific investments in their young employees and have profiled:
- Sinai Hospital/LifeBridge Health (Baltimore, MD),
- PTR Baler and Compactor (Philadelphia, PA),
- Swiss Post Solutions, Inc. (New York, NY),
- Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide (Stamford, CT),
- Pointe Precision, Inc. (Plover, WI)
- Giant Eagle and UPMC: Investing in Young Adults with Disabilities (Pittsburgh, PA)
- Okay Industries and ACMT: Connecticut Manufacturers Building a Talent Pipeline for Young Adults (Hartford, CT)
Resources for Engaging with Employers
The following resources are designed to help community and workforce development professionals work with employers to implement practices from the Job Design Framework.
- The CareerSTAT Guide for Investing in Frontline Healthcare Workers
- Behavioral Economics for Workforce Professionals
- The Pinkerton Papers: A Six Paper Series on Job Quality
- Moving Beyond Job Creation: Defining and Measuring the Creation of Quality Jobs
- Resources for Implementing Apprenticeship Programs
- Cincinnati Women’s Fund Employer Toolkit