Can systems dynamics help predict Minnesota’s future tech workforce needs?

April 3, 2012

MHTA – Is Minnesota producing enough qualified candidates to fill the technology jobs of today and tomorrow? It is a nagging question for company leaders, human resource specialists and educators. IT firms, in particular, continue to report difficulty placing candidates in jobs they currently have open.

The Minnesota High Tech Foundation has taken an interest in studying this issue to help guide future workforce preparation trends. MHTA President Margaret Anderson Kelliher wrote about the project in the April issue of Minnesota Business magazine. The MHTF Board has begn funding a study that uses systems dynamics methods and technology to examine Minnesota’s STEM graudate supply and demand.

“Ultimately, the project could help us avoid trial and error as Minnesota schools prepare students to work at Minnesota technology companies,” Kelliher wrote. “Once validated, these models would help Minnesota more reliably forecast our need for STEM professionals across a wide range of job classifications.”

Systems dynamics got its start more than fifty years ago when MIT professor Jay Forrester began gathering data from every direction to help General Electric address a workforce stability issue at one of its plants. It has evolved to become a popular tool for dissecting and solving other major societal issues.

Kelliher reports the project has already generated national interest but needs the input and support of Minnesota technology leaders. MHTF is asking them to complete a short survey of their workforce needs. Take the survey now. The Foundation is also looking to partner with businesses or organizations interested in helping fund additional phases of the study. The ultimate goal is to more reliably predict future workforce trends and needs, but it has the potential to place Minnesota at the forefront of efforts to build a world-class workforce and secure our economic future.

Take the survey now


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