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					Regional Information Technology
Engagement (RITE) Board
Creating Industry-Responsive IT in Northeast Ohio
Presented October 17, 2010
NCWE Conference, Washington D.C.

Overview of the Ohio Skills Bank

   The Ohio Skills Bank (OSB) is an economic
    development initiative, sponsored by the
    Governor of Ohio and Ohio Board of
    Regents, which aims to reduce “skills
    gaps” between the available supply of
    workers and industry needs, now and in
    the future.

Objectives of Ohio Skills Bank

   Define the size and nature of the skills gap
    within the IT sector in NEO

   Initiate prescriptive changes in the
    educational sector that will increase the
    availability of workers to fill currently
    available jobs, and

   Create a process that will enable the
    educators to respond to workforce needs
    – therefore preventing skills gaps in the

Plan of Work

   Conduct analyses based on currently
    available data and resources to help
    define the NEO IT skills gap, and

   Convene and facilitate a Skills Panel by
    bringing together large employers of IT
    talent in NEO to directly discuss the skills
    gap based on their experiences.

   The Skills Panel process took place during
    the summer of 2009 via four half-day
    sessions commencing on June 16th and
    concluding on August 25th, 2009.

Process plan for Skills Panel

   Four sessions were designed to communicate OSB

   Each successive meeting was designed to build on
    the previous meeting. The same process was
    conducted with Educators on the same days as the
    employers met. This allowed for nearly real-time
    feedback to the Educator skills panel on
    discussions had by the Employer Panel in the
    morning sessions

   The final session (#4) for the first time brought
    together educator and employer skills panels, and
    was facilitated by Roy Church, President of LCCC.
       At this session 11 recommendations were made by the
        employer panel for how they would like to work with the

Recruitment of IT Employers

   Identified major IT Developing and IT consuming
    companies in the region.

   Used various networks and methods to contact IT
    executives at the targeted companies and acquire
    their commitment to participate.

   Some IT executives contacted us to express desire
    to participate.

   Result was panel of 12 IT employers who employ a
    combined 3,000 IT employees in northeast Ohio;
    CIOs, VPs, and Presidents of IT companies, formed
    the Employer Panel.

Participants from Higher Education

   Across our region we began with five institutions:
    a public university, a private college, and three
    community colleges.

   Participation had to come from highest academic
    leader and all academic leaders of IT programs.

   By end of the joint session, they were eager to
    continue engagement with this consortium of

 Skills Panel Agenda
Day 1 Objectives – Setting the foundation of the skills panel process
      Provide a clear overview of the RTN/OSB process, mission, and current
      Define IT occupations and careers in a framework that enables clear and
       consistent communication among all employers present
      Identify and evaluate factors that are impacting the demand for IT talent
Day 2 Objectives: Understand IT Competencies
      Provide an analysis of IT talent supply vs. demand in the region compared to
       the nation
      Discuss IT competencies and gain an understanding on what competencies are
       most important, and how they translate between employers and among
Day 3 Objectives: Describe existing educational offerings in IT and how well
address industry needs:
      Discuss how well educational offerings are addressing the demand for IT
      Develop recommendations for the educational community for 4th and final
Day 4 Objectives: Communicate findings and determine next steps
      Employers provided 11 recommendations to the educational community,
       based on their findings from the first three sessions
      Educators reacted to these recommendations and provided feedback on how
       to best move forward.

      Starting the Skills Panel

   Sharing of what we know & getting
    agreement on how to define IT, Jobs in IT
    and Career Pathways

IT is a broad field and is heavily used
in IT and other Industries

Broad definition of IT:
   Information technology (IT) is the study, design, development,
   implementation, support and management of computer-based information
   systems. Examples include hardware and software applications that enable
   information acquisition, processing, and transmission.
How firms use IT:
   Information Technology is used by firms to produce an end product (e.g.
   designing business software) AND/OR to enable the effectiveness of what
   they do (e.g. e-marketing of products). IT workers and tasks are vital in most
How educators look at IT
   From an talent development perspective, it is important to distinguish
   between two categories of IT skill sets:
        Providing specific IT skills required of workers considered IT professionals
         who develop new or improved IT products or processes.
         -> These are people who design and build IT
        Equipping workers with basic IT literacy required in various occupations
         (Jobs such as Adm. Assistant, Operations Researcher, Travel Agent), such as
         using common software applications and computer hardware.
         ->These are people who use what others build
       The importance of IT employment to

   The NorTech NEO IT study estimated a total of 96,000 workers
    are employed in NE Ohio (17 county area) across all industries.
   54% of 2006 IT Hires in 2006 were in four IT professions:
    Business Applications Specialists, Programmers, Network
    Specialists, and Technical Support Help Desk workers.

   Two IT Professions--Business Application Specialists and
    Software Engineer/Architects made up one-third of all 2006 IT

   Employers uniformly agree that qualified IT applicants need
    technical skills combined with soft skills and business skills.

   Employers place a particularly high premium on work
    experience for IT workers, making internship/student work
    experiences particularly important for the vitality of our
    region’s IT workforce.
   An estimated 6,400 student work experiences were offered in
    2006 by about one-in-five employers.
                               It is useful to distinguish IT careers from
                               those that use IT, as their skill sets are
                                                                                                                            Careers that actively involve developing,
 IT Across Careers                                                                    IT Careers                            innovating, or promoting the use of
                                                                                                                            information technologies

Any career or position that requires
proficiency with using common IT                                     Database                         Network                     Software              Digital
applications, such as MS windows, GIS                                Admin                            and                         Dev                   Media
software, and the internet. These are ―non-
                                                                                                      Technical                                         and
IT‖ jobs that are increasingly requiring USE
of software and computers to complete                                                                 Support                                           Internet
Essential Skills Include1:
                                                                          Careers in the above four clusters require a combination of
1) Personal Information Management
2) Electronic Mail Applications
                                                                          unique technical (e.g. programming), communications, and
3) Internet Applications                                                  management skills.
4) Writing/Publishing Applications
5) Presentation Applications
6) Spreadsheet Applications
                                                                          Generally, entry-level positions emphasize technical
7) Database Applications                                                  capabilities, and promotion/advancements follow either a
8) Groupware/Collaboration Applications                                   technical track or management-related track. Exceptions
9) Operating System and Data Management
                                                                          include sales positions and tech support where
10) Computer-Based Equipment Applications                                 communications skills are critical early on.
11) Global Positioning/Geographic Information
Applications                                                                                                                                                     12
            Source: 1- National Science Foundation IT Across Careers is an NSF-ATE Project with Education Development Center, Inc. Newton, MA
                               For the purposes of OSB, we are focused
                               on IT as an occupation, not general IT

 IT Across Careers                                                                    IT Careers
Any career or position that requires
proficiency with using common IT                                     Database                         Networks                    Software      Digital
applications, such as MS windows, GIS                                Admin                            and                         Dev           Media
software, and the internet. These are ―non-
                                                                                                      Operating                                 and
IT‖ jobs that are increasingly requiring USE
of software and computers to complete                                                                 Systems                                   Internet
Essential Skills Include1:
                                                                          These are careers that actively involve
1) Personal Information Management
2) Electronic Mail Applications                                           managing, developing, innovating, or
3) Internet Applications                                                  promoting the use of information technologies
4) Writing/Publishing Applications
5) Presentation Applications
6) Spreadsheet Applications                                               Careers in the above four competency clusters
7) Database Applications
8) Groupware/Collaboration Applications                                   require a minimum of unique technical skills
9) Operating System and Data Management                                   (e.g. programming), and increasingly
10) Computer-Based Equipment Applications                                 communications and management skills.
11) Global Positioning/Geographic Information

            Source: 1- National Science Foundation IT Across Careers is an NSF-ATE Project with Education Development Center, Inc. Newton, MA
                     Primary emphasis will be on
                     developing “IT Career” Pathways

 IT Across Careers                            IT Careers
                                                                    Careers that actively involve developing,
                                                                    innovating, or promoting the use and
                                                                    development of information
The 11 IT skills identified by the NSF-
ATE for It literacy are important at the   Each of these four IT professional clusters has a pathway
entry level of various careers in non-IT   in which workers enter, depending on their current skills
industries: Healthcare, Personal           and experience, and advance to positions requiring greater
Protection, etc.                           technical or professional skills and job responsibilities.

The exact combination of these             Education and training providers currently offer numerous
fundamental IT skills and level of         certificate and degree programs at the associate,
proficiency will vary with specific        bachelors and advanced levels. Unlike healthcare, these
industry needs for IT and job              programs generally are not intended to prepare students
responsibilities.                          for specific jobs but rather a range of jobs found in the
                                           labor market. Graduates of the same program will find
This project has developed useful          themselves in quite varied jobs even though all can be
curriculum & metrics for numerous          viewed as ―related to their field of study‖—meaning the
occupations.                               courses taken prepared them for the job they now have.


                      The NorTech Career Clusters, updated

                                                            Same clusters used by
                   *IT Career Cluster                       NEO IT and WA State            • Most IT pathways only cover
                                                                                           the technical track
                                                                                           •IT curriculum frequently
    Database          Network               Software and          Digital                  underemphasizes the need for
    Admin             and Tech              Applications          Media and                business knowledge and work-
                      Support               Dev                   Internet                 based learning experiences

                    Technical Track                                     Business Track
          Senior-level management within technical           Management/leadership that heavily prioritizes
Senior    departments- likely in large organizations or      strategy and development, with a technical base
Level     tech-oriented companies                            (Division manager, CIO, etc)

          Positions that require additional breadth and      Positions that begin to prioritize business and
          depth of technical skills, as well as mid-level    management skills along with technical
Level     business and communications skills                 knowledge (i.e Project management)

Entry     Core technical skills should be identified for each Career Cluster, as well as a base level
Level     of communications and business skills – complemented with internship experience

         * We will focus on IT occupations, not IT as an industry or IT literacy as part of a non-IT career
              However, the business track of IT is
              frequently forgotten in training
              programs and career pathways
                                IT Career Cluster

 Database Admin            Network and        Software and           Digital Media
                           Tech Support       Applications Dev       and Internet

           Technical Track                        Business-related Track

Most IT Career Pathways only cover this       Workers in this track may require equally
technical track (see State of Washington      advanced knowledge of technical IT skills
example in following slides)
                                              Integrating business skills and experiences
Most curriculum for IT programs do NOT
                                              into educational IT programs will require
include any attention to business knowledge
                                              new thought.
or soft skills that employers seek
                                              The emphasis of the Ohio Skills Bank is on
Work-based learning experiences, which are
                                              incumbent workers and adults seeking
highly valued by employers, are rarely
                                              career and job change.
mandated in IT curriculum.

Training is critical to meet job demands,
and where local colleges and universities
can help
The NEO IT Workforce Study also found that the
  following skills are critical to employers:

      Technical skills (i.e. networks/operating
       systems, databases, programming, etc)
      Business, or “soft-skills” such as business
       knowledge, presentation and communications
       skills, and writing
      Work experiences, such as internships and
       student work opportunities for those without
       significant full-time experience (1 in 5 surveyed
       employers offered internships in 2006)

Some, but not all of these skills are currently included
  in IT curricula
                    The OSB process involves aligning the
                    educational system with employer-driven

     ―Gap Analysis‖                                               ―Asset Map‖
                                                             What competencies do the region’s
    IT Skills Gap = A-C                                      educational institutions supply?

                                                                    State colleges
             A      C          B                                   and universities
                   IT skills
Employers’        that align                                 Private              Career
                                   Skills in the
  IT Needs        well with                                institutions           centers
                    needs                                           Community

    • Data analysis                                           • Program, enrollment and
    • Employer IT Skills Panel                                graduation analysis
    • Survey of employers                                     • Educator IT Skills Panel

                                    New educational programming

 Our goal is to align actionable
 recommendations OSB objectives

Ohio Skills Bank Objectives
1.   Create a dynamic,
     educational system for
     Information Technology
     in NEO                       Recommendations
2.   Identify the “skills gaps”
     that students currently
     have, and make               -Roles/responsibilities
     recommendations on           -Timelines
     how to eliminate those
3.   Increase and/or improve
     the pipeline (quantity
     and quality) of students
     pursuing Information
     Technology careers

Presentation of Industry to
  Higher Education
  Recommendations (1-7)

Objective 1:
  Create a dynamic, employer-
  responsive educational system
  for Information Technology in
                  Objective: Create a dynamic, employer-
                  responsive educational system for
                  Information Technology in NEO
Recommendation #1: Align or augment curricula with current
                   business/job market needs
                      Understand the difference between market segments, i.e.
                       “producers” vs. “consumers” of IT, and their required skills sets
                            Producers of IT create IT products and services for others – i.e.
                             Microsoft and Hyland SW, whose needs are more technical
                            Consumers of IT utilize IT products and services to function in their
                             businesses – i.e. Eaton and Sherwin Williams, whose needs are
                             higher in business process knowledge, portfolio management, soft
                             skills , etc.
                      Use *SFIA, which accurately represents how industry views IT
                       careers and competencies, to augment curricula
                            The importance of various applied business competencies is
                             emphasized in SFIA, and these skills are increasingly important
                            SFIA indicates which careers are available with increasing levels of
                             education and experience, and is thus useful for incremental
                             education methodologies
                            2 and 4 year colleges should align their curricula to SFIA

      * Skills Framework for the Information Age:
            Objective: Create a dynamic, employer-
            responsive educational system for
            Information Technology in NEO

Recommendation #2: Develop systemic efficiencies among
                   regional educational providers
               Share “non-competitive” content organizations,
                thereby reducing redundant efforts. Virtual
                learning is an option.

                With the savings from shared efforts, each
                organization should have funds to specialize – this
                can create regional hot spots of technology

               Standardize, or adopt existing standards, across
                the regional university system in areas of training
                and experience (i.e. Comptia)
            Objective: Create a dynamic, employer-
            responsive educational system for
            Information Technology in NEO

Recommendation #3: Increase work-based learning experiences
                   by requiring co-ops and/or internships
               Work-based learning experiences are a leading
                factor when deciding who to hire

               This is a win-win situation: employers like to hire
                interns, and interns gain invaluable experience

               1 year of full-time experience is best-practice: this
                offers substantially more value than part-time or
                off-site experiences

               Will require a full-time staff person to solicit
                internships with employers and help to place
             Objective: Create a dynamic, employer-
             responsive educational system for
             Information Technology in NEO

Recommendations # 4, 5, 6: Other educational effectiveness
             4) Collect/improve student success metrics:
                   Enrollment and graduation rates are not enough
                   Ideally multiple metrics would track how student success measure
                    up to their intentions
                   For many students, this means their ability to find jobs in their
                    area of study
             5) Increase the velocity of curriculum change
                   IT is a fast-changing field, and many technology competencies are
                    in-demand before they make it into the educational system
                   There are limits based on state-level bureaucracy, but can new
                    courses be integrated into existing degree programs faster?
             6) Integrate results-based compensation
                   Incentivize faculty to integrate new technologies into their
                   Incentivize student placement into jobs in their chosen field
                    (recruiters, staff that manages internship placements, etc)

Objective 2:
  Identify the “skills gaps” that
  students currently have, and make
  recommendations on how to
  eliminate those gaps
             Objective: Identify the “skills gaps” that                 27

             students currently have, and make
             recommendations on how to eliminate those
Recommendation # 7: Improve the teaching and/or assessment of
                    foundational competencies
                The DOL competency model, Tiers 1-3, are
                 believed to be the most important competency sets
                 for long-term success in IT
                They are also perceived to be the biggest skills gap
                Of particular importance are:
                    Personal drive and ambition
                    Willingness to be a life-long learner
                    Communications skills
                    Flexibility
                    Discipline
                    Problem-solving capabilities
                    Ability to work well in a team
                    Leadership skills

Objective 3:
  Increase and/or improve the
  pipeline quantity and quality of
  students pursuing Information
  Technology careers
             Objective: Increase and/or improve the
             pipeline quantity and quality of students
             pursuing Information Technology careers

Recommendation # 8: Raise awareness of IT careers, vs. jobs

                Re-brand IT career marketing materials:
                    Use the SFIA structure to emphasize that IT jobs have more
                     to do with business strategy than heads-down
                    Emphasize the availability of jobs and the high salary
                Increase interaction between practitioners and
                    Bring workers, senior executives, and recent graduates into
                     schools to speak directly with students about their
                    Create and IT Careers portal: Edupedia
                         This could be a STEM careers site, or include all disciplines
                         The goal is to increase interaction between practitioners and students
                          seeking information about careers, and could include: Q&A site, Ask/Give
                          portals, information about training opportunities, careers, and their
                          educational requirements
             Objective: Increase and/or improve the
             pipeline quantity and quality of students
             pursuing Information Technology careers

Recommendation # 9: Increase outreach efforts

                 Host an annual “IT Week”
                     Condensed marketing campaign to a variety of ages
                     Practitioners come directly into schools to discuss their
                     Could involve a competition, such as NEOSA’s website
                      design competition for high school students
                 Create an “IT Roadshow” document
                     Pre-made presentation that can be accessed by anyone to
                      discuss career options with interested candidates
                     Should include an accurate representation of the
                      availability of jobs and associated salary figures
            Objective: Increase and/or improve the
            pipeline quantity and quality of students
            pursuing Information Technology careers

Recommendation # 10: Work through influencers – Improve
                   guidance and assessment efforts
               Provide realistic information to parents
                   Parents are discouraging their kids from pursuing IT, largely due to
               Work with guidance and career counselors:
                   High school students use guidance counselors to learn about career
                    opportunities and associated educational options. Career
                    counselors exist at colleges and universities, as well as career
                   Work with guidance counselors so that they understand industry
                    needs and the characteristics of ideal candidates for IT careers
                   Create a FAQ knowledge base that all career/guidance counselors
                    could direct their students to
               Create improved pre-screening/assessment
                   Assess the technical aptitude/personal traits needed for an IT
                   Design and share an assessment system that helps students
                    understand early on what career tracks are best for them

             Objective: All

Proposed Action and Recommendation #11:
      Create and leverage a better Advisory Board system

                A systemic advisory board system may include a
                 “Super” Advisory board that sits across institution-
                 specific boards
                The Super Board provides:
                    Progress developing common goals across institutions,
                     such as how to be industry responsive
                    A structure upon which to build an intelligent, efficient, and
                     regional educational system in IT
                Institution-specific boards provide:
                    Unification across the institutions’ various IT programs
                    Direct link to industry that can drive programmatic advice,
                     internship opportunities, and help developing success

RITE Board Members:
October 2010

   Bill Blausey, RITE Board Chairman, CIO Eaton Corp
   Joe LaMantia, RITE Board Vice Chairman and President, E-Ventus
   Diane Gormley, RITE Board Opportunity and Placement Committee
    Chairman and Resource Manager American Greetings
   Tom Lucas, RITE Board Academic Engagement Committee Chairman
    and CIO Sherwin Williams
   Jim Sage, RITE Board Community Engagement Committee Chairman
    and CIO, University of Akron
   Jon Elsasser, retired CIO The Timken Company
   Sam Babic, Associate VP Development, Hyland Software
   Pam Piar, Regional VP Information Technology, The Cleveland Clinic
   Jim Cookinham, President, Cookinham Consulting
   Andy Platt, CIO Smuckers
   Kevin Goodman, Managing Director of Business Development,
    Bluebridge Networks
   Dan Muller, Senior Vice President – Strategy and CIO, The Timken

RITE Board -Long Term Goals

1.   Industry/Educator Collaboration: Create an industry
     network that interacts with higher education and
     regional development resources to create a flexible
     system that drives regional priorities, excellence, and
     growth opportunities.
2.   Talent Development: Develop and retain a qualified,
     highly-skilled, and industry-responsive workforce to
     support the growth of information technology careers
     and firms, including those that produce, consume, and
     provide IT products and services.
3.   Promotion, Awareness and Advocacy: Promote the
     availability and advantages of information technology
     careers and regional IT assets, as well as overcome
     misperceptions related to IT careers.

RITE Board Committees

Academic Engagement, Chaired by Tom Lucas
 Focus is forming a close, collaborative relationship with
  each of the region’s academic institutions that offer IT

Opportunity/Placement, Chaired by Diane Gormley
 Focus will be on co-ops, internships, and summer work

Community Outreach, Chaired by Jim Sage
 Focus is to broaden knowledge around IT careers, dispel
  myths, and engage the IT pipeline at all levels so as to
  strengthen the supply of students pursuing IT careers


                                                              RITE submits
                           RITE Creates
                                                              application for
                          Conceptual Plan                                                           RITE
                                                              DOL, DOE and                        initiates
OSB Skills                  and Initiates
                                                              State of Ohio                       State of
 Panels                   Monthly Meetings
                                                                 Funding                        Ohio Project

             RITE Board                      RITE Convenes                      RITE secures
                                                Industry-                       funding from
               Formed                           Educator
                                              Collaborative                     Ohio Board of
                                                  Event                           Regents

                          RITE BOARD MONTHLY MEETINGS

          Workforce Innovation Solutions
 By June 2011, increase regional employment in IT from students
  currently enrolled at participating Ohio higher education institutions


1.   Employment and Enrollment Impacts expressed by an
     increased exchange between RITE employers and pilot institutions.

2.   Enduring Systems and Mechanisms that will lead to greater
     alignment between higher education programs and demand for IT

           Workforce Innovation Solutions

   A formal review of participating institution’s academic and
    internship/coop programs.
   A formal review of RITE employers direct-hire and internship/coop
    opportunities and processes.
   A “best practices” in internships/coop programs document.
   Presentations and best practices to drive IT student engagement
    and for creating business community awareness of internships.

           Workforce Innovation Solutions

   Defined cohorts of IT students tracking into defined set of
    internship/coop/direct hire employment opportunities.
   Interim web resource as infrastructure for matching and IT career
   Cross-functional, inter-institutional and employer-comprised team
    focused on creating better pool of internship and coop students.
   Recommendations for sustaining efforts presented at July 2011 joint
    meeting of RITE Board, higher education and the State of Ohio.

        Workforce Innovation Solutions

1.   Prepare and grow the pipeline to increase supply
     sufficient to projected demand.

2.   Enhance existing IT programs to better match
     employer requirements for projected internship and
     job opportunities.

3.   Strengthen and grow work-based learning
     opportunities that can lead to employment.

        Workforce Innovation Solutions

IT Programs:
    SFIA Competency Model Alignment – Balanced Scorecard
    Unique Offerings

Work-Based Learning:
  Direct link with employers - transparent processes and requirements
  Shared matching and promotional tools and activities
  Program refinements on both sides

    Student Engagement
    Business Engagement

        Workforce Innovation Solutions

   Organizing staffing
   Finalize pilot institutions
   Develop evaluation plan
   Complete Balanced Scorecards at pilot institutions
   Convene internship/coop program coordinators on campus and
    recruiters from RITE employers
   Compile employer hiring data & process information
   Compile institutional data
   Continue to develop student and business engagement strategies

RITE Board – Sustainability

   Board committed to long-term

   Overall evaluation and effectiveness of Balanced
    Scorecard instrument

   Board and pilot institutions to develop
    sustainability plan

   Designed for scale and replication

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