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[Excerpt] The service-oriented economy has an undeservedly bad reputation. The notion of a service-oriented economy somehow conjures up an impression of a nation of "hamburger flippers." That's not where the growth in employment is coming in the service sector. In fact, the greatest increases in the service sector are coming in the professional and technical areas. Fully one-third of the growth in employment since 1972 has occurred in the professional-technical worker classification. Eighty percent of the managerial jobs in the United States are in the service sector. As a consequence, the changes require a better prepared labor force than we've ever had before. Again, these changes constitute a great challenge to the formulation of public policies to provide that type of labor force.

Human resource policy is by nature long-term policy. We must commit ourselves to a long-term preparation of our labor force; to have the education, the training, the information systems in place so that people can be prepared for the types of jobs that our economy is generating.


Suggested Citation

Briggs, V. M. (1989). Changes in the labor market [Electronic version]. In P. Wilson (Ed.), Meeting the challenges of change: Unions and the white collar work force (pp. 1-4). Washington, DC: AFL-CIO.

Required Publisher Statement

Reprinted with permission.