The State of American Jobs

The State of American Jobs

A majority of American adults see continuous training and skills development as "essential" (54 percent) or "important" (33 percent) to a successful long-term career, a report from the finds. Based on a survey conducted in association with the , the report, (95 pages, PDF), found that the higher the survey respondents' educational attainment, the more likely they were to say ongoing training was essential. Respondents viewed a mix of soft and technical skills as crucial, with equal percentages (85 percent) saying it was extremely or very important to "[have] a detailed understanding of how to use computer technology," "[be] able to work with people from many different backgrounds," and "[have] training in writing and communicating." The survey also found that while respondents were more likely to see increased outsourcing of jobs to other countries (80 percent) and increased imports of foreign-made products (77 percent) as harmful to American workers than to see  increased use of contract/temp employees (57 percent) or automation (50 percent) as harmful, they also said the responsibility for ensuring that workers have the necessary skills lies with individuals themselves (72 percent), followed by the public K-12 education system (60 percent) and colleges and universities (52 percent). According to the report, however, only 16 percent of respondents believed that a four-year degree prepared students for a well-paying job.