New Challenge Just Announced
How to Attract and Retain Technology Workers to Hawaii
This ideation challenge is designed to engage all individuals to be an active participant in trying to address a complex and difficult challenge in Hawaii, but one that also has direct application to other parts of the country. We are looking for creative and innovative ideas that are directly related to the types of processes, new initiative, potential technology solutions, ideas or new programs that could be used to identify, train (upskill/reskill) and retain employees that could be used to place individuals in technical and social science positions in Hawaii. Discovering new ideas in these areas may also become beneficial to other occupation and employer needs across the State.
As we all know and have probably experienced, the events of the past couple years have had a severe impact on Hawaii's economy as well as other states across the country. Respective to Hawaii, with travel and tourism down significantly due to the pandemic, the unemployment rate was significantly impacted and then further exacerbated by challenges experienced in recovering jobs that were lost. This pandemic generated increase in unemployment has been coupled with a growing cost of living (primarily housing, food, and energy costs) that is on par with New York, Washington DC and San Francisco and is one of the highest in the nation.
And while the economic picture is improving it is still difficult for many businesses and U.S. Armed Services Component Commands to attract and retain the skilled workers they need. In addition to the cost-of-living increase a key contributor is the ever-shrinking workforce. In a recent University of Hawaii Economic Research Organization forecast, approximately 16,000 workers left the workforce in 2020, with many of these leaving the state altogether.
This "perfect storm" has forced many employers and industry groups to get more creative in their recruiting and retention efforts. One program as an example, Movers & Shakers, offered remote workers free airfare to the state and will also help newcomers get settled through discounted living accommodations, co-working space memberships and other deals throughout their stay.
In this iDISPLA Initiative we are looking for insights on two workforce related areas:
- What ideas can be used to identify and train displaced workers, university students, transitioning veterans, either on island or off, to support government and other technical jobs in Hawaii? As important, what are new ways to engage and activate individuals (and their networks of friends, family, and colleagues) to find and reach out to potential employees within the State?
- Once identified, trained, and placed what retainment strategies (to include exploring how employers in Hawaii could tie their retention efforts to housing incentives they would provide their employees) can companies employ to help their employees realize a Live-Work-Play environment in Hawaii and position them for economic success?
Qualifying submissions for this ideation challenge will focus on real world solutions that demonstrate an understanding of the problem, and provide tangible, executable ideas that can be deployed in the current economy. Submissions that reference multiple approaches as opposed to one single big idea are highly desirable. Your submission must also be realistic - example, submissions such as "double workers' salaries", will not be considered. Additional consideration will be given to submissions that include the private and public sector in a collaborative manner. Your participation in this pilot project will be invaluable for providing additional viewpoints on how to create a robust workforce in Hawaii.
This challenge is scheduled to run until the 6th of September, with the top five submitters being invited to present their ideas to key industry and government collaborators of the initiative.
To submit a solution, please visit the secure iDISPLA site and complete a registration. It's that easy, good luck.
After logging you will be able to work on the challenge.
If you were previously registered on the secure iDISPLA site you will need to complete a new registration.