September 24 -- The National Association of State Workforce Agencies (NASWA) was awarded one of the first Convergence Accelerator ( C-Accel ) grants by the National Science Foundation (NSF). The Phase 1 funding grant will support a collaboration between NASWA, BrightHive, and the W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research to develop a set of dynamic and interactive tools for job seekers through a cloud-hosted warehouse of job openings from the National Labor Exchange ( NLx ).
"This award was granted as part of the C-Accel Al and Future Jobs track, which aims to find new ways to use artificial intelligence to connect workers with jobs of the future. During Phase 1, the collaborative alliance will build a cloud-hosted warehouse of NLx data, create protocols for making raw job listing data available to researchers and the public, and develop use cases for worker- and learner-centered career exploration tools for job seekers, employers, and states. This work will be the foundation of a second proposal for Phase 2 funding in the first quarter of 2020.
"The real-time labor market information collected from NLx job openings will help job seekers and learners plan their careers, support employers' recruitment activities, and inform state workforce development investments," said Scott B. Sanders, NASWA Executive Director. "We're excited to explore research insights and opportunities while providing valuable data back to the public workforce system."
Created through a public-private partnership between NASWA and DirectEmployers Association, the NLx collects and distributes job openings found on corporate career sites, state job banks. The NLx has been a vital resource to state workforce agencies and the broader public workforce system for over a decade; however, the research potential for its high-quality data has not yet been realized. Currently, there are over 2.4 million active listings in the NLx for job seekers and over 100 million historical listings for researchers to explore.
In addition to collaborative efforts between NASWA, BrightHive, and the W.E. Upjohn Institute, an Advisory Workgroup will be created to provide input on data product development and labor market analysis. Members of the Advisory Workgroup will include representatives from the NASWA Workforce & Labor Market Information and Employment & Training committees, DirectEmployers, LinkedIn, and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation. NASWA's research arm, the Center for Employment Security Education and Research, is the formal awardee of the C-Accel grant.