There’s a new citywide workforce development strategy to bridge the gap between job seekers and employers.

Fueling Philadelphia’s Talent Engine focuses on better aligning workforce education and training to the needs of local industries.

This new strategy addresses employers’ talent needs — plus it prepares residents for careers in family-sustaining jobs at the same time.

How the plan was developed

Many members of the business and workforce provider communities approached the Mayor early in his term about the need for the City to play a stronger role in connecting these stakeholders.

As a result, the Philadelphia Workforce Development Steering Committee was created — the first truly cross-sector, collaborative group of leaders representing all elements of the workforce development system.

Managing Director Mike DiBerardinis and Director of Commerce Harold Epps brought the group together to create a strategy with a shared agenda and measurements of success.

The Steering Committee includes representatives from the Chamber of Commerce for Greater Philadelphia, Philadelphia Works, the School District, Philadelphia Youth Network, Community College of Philadelphia, and the United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey.

After 18 months of intensive research and analysis, we now have a strategy that will help ensure every resident across the city can build the skills needed to compete in the workforce and share equally in the benefits of Philadelphia’s economic growth and prosperity.

Goals to strengthen our workforce

It is clear that it’s time to rethink education and training — so our institutions are able to provide students and job-seekers with relevant, employer-driven experiences to compete in a knowledge economy.

We need to shift the focus from short-term job training and placement to long-term career planning and advancement.

Fueling Philadelphia’s Talent Engine developed three critical goals to guide the strategy:

  1. Prepare Philadelphians with the skills employers need for a world-class workforce.
  2. Address the barriers that prevent Philadelphians from accessing meaningful career opportunities.
  3. Build a workforce system that is more coordinated, innovative, and effective.

Executing the strategy

A brand new office, the Office of Workforce Development, will be coordinating this important work with the members of the Steering Committee.

This office is a direct contact for organizations who want to become Model Employers and will help connect them to the resources they need to do so.

Feel free to contact the Workforce Development team directly for more information at

With the help of our Model Employers, we can bolster our local economy and bring greater prosperity to our city.

Let’s train Philadelphians with the skills employers actually need, match them with jobs that are available now and continue to support career advancement in the future.

Philadelphia’s greatest asset is its people. It’s time to dip into our untapped potential.