- Accenture (the international consulting shard of Arthur Andersen that incorporated in Bermuda, then Ireland, thus avoiding U.S. taxes—way to keep our dollars local, Governor!) does not mention wages in the executive summary.
- Accenture does say South Dakota's workforce problems come from stupid workers "Job seekers do not know the real potential of technical and other careers, or what is expected to succeed") and misfocused teachers ("Education is critical to providing the workforce South Dakota needs, and must be focused on the skills and competencies needed to grow and sustain South Dakota’s economy"). Obviously we are the dummies, not our business leaders.
- The executive summary damns us with limited thinking: "...South Dakota will never fully solve its workforce challenges."
- The key to South Dakota's economic success is "having enough workers with the right skills and competencies."
- The bullet list of the key difficulties in recruiting and retaining workers mentions "competition for available skills", lack of job seeker "soft skills", and lack of housing, but does not mention wages.
- Summit participants proposed that the business sector can boost recruitment and retention if it will "Increase workplace flexibility to meet needs of a changing workforce... expand the number of apprenticeships leading to jobs... [and] develop creative solutions to provide transportation for workers." Wages are not mentioned.
- The three scariest words in the entire report: Business-driven curricula.
- Once we retool our schools to do what business wants, we just need to build more complicated "centralized online hubs for job seekers and employers" built around "common language, data, and a unified agenda" so we can match up skills and competencies with openings (but not wages).
- In their discussion of "Creating a Roadmap" for recruitment and retention, summit coordinators asked business participants several questions, but not, "Do you think you pay your employees a competitive wage?"
- Participants at all six summits included low wages as a problem for recruitment and retention. But only the Brookings, Rapid City, and Sioux Falls sessions managed to get "increase wages" to bubble into the top suggestions for recruiting and retaining more workers. Watertown, Aberdeen, Huron-Mitchell-Yankton, are you that dense?
I'm sure Accenture's consultants were paid very well to conduct and summarize these Workforce Summits. If South Dakota would apply its attitude toward Irish consultants to its own workers, it might not need another Workforce Summit.20 comments