Jane Oates, President of WorkingNation: Eliminating “Buts” In The Hiring Process

What would veteran workforce training leader Jane Oates do to improve the hiring system if she had a magic wand? “I would take away all of the buts, as in ‘I would hire you, but you don’t have experience, but you have a disability, but you’re too old.’” It will not only help achieve equal access to employment, she tells Futuro Health CEO Van Ton-Quinlivan, but right now employers could really use a bigger talent pool. “We cannot be the country we are meant to be with a 61% labor market participation rate.” After many years in government service, capped with being Assistant Secretary for Employment and Training in the Obama administration, she’s currently leading WorkingNation, a non-profit focused on educating the public and policymakers about achievable solutions to prepare workers for the future. Among its current initiatives are boosting the employment prospects of veterans, the disabled and single mothers. Partnerships are key to this work, and she and Van will be appearing on a panel together on August 22, 2022 at ASAE: The Center for Association Leadership conference in Nashville to underscore the role associations can play in bringing employers and workforce development stakeholders together. This episode of WorkforceRx is full of interesting ideas and angles to consider for those concerned about closing the troubling gap between job openings and available workers.

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