Why the New Collar Workforce is Important to DX Planet 4.0

DX Planet 4.0 is an organization that is clearly centered in the midst of the Digital Transformation that is sweeping all industries. While helping a wide range of enterprises to seamlessly integrate new technologies into all aspects of their operation, DX Planet 4.0 sees all aspects of the process.

Explains CEO Bruce Taylor, “Digital Transformation is a journey that every organization — public or private — will take. And the journey will take many different paths. DX or Industry 4.0 looks very different on a manufacturing shop floor than it does in mobile apps development for fintech.” But across the board it is people who make or break successful deployment of a DX program.

We are still in the early days of the new digital transformation economy,” reiterates Mr. Taylor. As a result, we tend to see smart automation as a threat to jobs. But what if the exponential productivity gains implied by automation in fact create whole new classes of required workforce skills. We know this from the world of software, already. Five years ago the classification of software developers now known as DevOps didn’t exist. Five years ago the term ‘serverless computing’ didn’t exist. And, yet, globally, there is a growing shortage of technologically skilled workers to keep pace in the 20 percent-plus annual growth rates of digital transformation technology leaders.”

Mr. Taylor saw that a skilled workforce is an essential element of all Digital Transformation.  He also recognized that the need was immediate with large numbers of employees being displaced and training programs not meeting employer needs.  And so he reached out to groups that were working at the forefront of education reform: the North American Digital Fabrication Alliance [NADFA] and Innovate + Educate.

NADFA’s New Collar Network project grew out of research by its founder, Sarah Boisvert on the skills manufacturers need in operator and service technician staff.  Mr. Taylor had read her book, The New Collar Workforce, and immediately his own observations were verified by the 200 employers quoted in the book.

Innovate+Educate employs a systems change model, consulting and implementing strategies with communities, workforce partners and employers on the shift to competency and skills-based education and employment.  Utilizing innovative tools that range from assessments to navigation that allow this shift, Mr. Taylor knew that these new ideas must take shape in all organizations wanting to embark on a Disruptive Technology path.

“How we invest in and prepare people not just for the jobs we have today, but also the ones they will compete for tomorrow, helps ensure the success of our enterprises but also helps secure their future,” says Mr. Taylor.  And so the New Collar Workforce Summit was born.

Employers implementing Digital Transformation and educators exploring new training models are intertwined in a new paradigm and to be successful, must communicate at a fundamental level.  The Summit’s goal is to start a hard dialogue, addressing the tough questions, dispelling distrust and encouraging collaboration that will create the environment needed for today’s New Collar Workforce.

The Southwest/Rocky Mountain states-focused summit will take place June 9 – 11, 2019 at the La Fonda Hotel on the Plaza in Santa Fe, New Mexico.   Keynotes from USC professor Dr. Julie Albright, Innovate & Educate Founder Jamai Blivin, Local Motors VP David Woessner and Meow Wolf’s Strategic Development Manager, Jeff Fullerton will set the stage for in-depth discussion.

Roundtables will bring together input from higher education administrators and professors, C-suite industry executives, innovative alternative training programs, union leaders, Policy and program directors responsible for economic development and workforce readiness at the state, county and municipal level, K – 12 program directors and school superintendents, Boards of trade and chambers of commerce with active workforce readiness interest and programs, Corporate HR and training and development directors and elected legislative leaders and key staff.

Outcomes will include a white paper targeted to the needs of the region and video of keynotes and fireside chats.  A steering committee will be formed to facilitate recommendations across constituencies and maintain forward momentum. For as Mr. Taylor recognizes, it is our people who drive the Digital Transformation that companies desperately need to maintain global competitiveness!

To apply for an invitation to the New Collar Workforce Summit, please go to NewCollarNetwork.com.