Several new job boards, including Opportunity@Work and Skillful, use this approach to match workers with employers, job coaches and training programs based on skills instead of credentials.
Public policy has a role, too. The Trump administration’s expansion of the apprenticeship program — which enables people to learn on the job, while being paid — is a solution with bipartisan support. Employers like it, too, because they don’t have to depend on schools to teach what they want their workers to know.
Workers would have an easier time reapplying their skills if the government gave every displaced worker several types of assistance, said Mark Muro, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution. These could include job counseling; cash grants for taking time off to take classes; wage insurance to make up the difference for taking a lower-paying job; and relocation grants to move to areas of the country with more jobs.