In the last few years, the “skills gap” has been invoked by politicians and pundits alike. It’s a narrative that gets wielded to justify changes to the structure of both K–12 and post-secondary education.

I’ve noticed a growing number of startups that say their product/service works to address that gap, not through job training so much as job placement. These include career matching services, human resources software, and the like. (Bonus points if you can boast about “algorithms” in your pitch. Here’s a sample headline: “Headstart wants to better analyze candidates to fit them with the best jobs.” Bonus points for that startup in appropriating the name of a well-known early childhood education program.)

I have added “The Business of Job Training” to my Hack Education Weekly News, but we should probably think about this as “The Business of Jobs” more generally. This is intertwined, no doubt, with other trends I’m monitoring: for-profit higher education and credentialing, for example, as well as Trump's efforts to curb immigration and limit visas.

Related question: does LinkedIn matter here?

Audrey Watters


The Stories We Were Told about Education Technology (2017)

A Hack Education Project

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