Brookings Report Spotlights Need For More ‘Good Jobs’

The chief executive officer of the Central Indiana Corporate Partnership says a new report from the Brookings Institution identifies the industries that provide pathways to good jobs in the region. The report, Advancing Opportunity in Central Indiana, suggests ways the region can focus on regional economic growth and inclusion strategies on the types of industries that have a higher concentration of “good jobs” and “promising jobs.”

“Good jobs” are described as those that provide middle-class wages and benefits, while “promising jobs” are entry-level positions that do not provide the level of pay or benefits of a good job, but enable employees to reach a good job within 10 years, according to the report. In the 11-county region of central Indiana, a “good job” would pay at least $18 per hour, plus some kind of benefits.

In an interview with Inside INdiana Business, David Johnson says the purpose of the report is to look beyond strategies for developing specific kinds of industries, which is a major focus for CICP.

Johnson says the report aims to “think about more broadly what kinds of jobs we should be promoting in our city and region that will deliver real economic opportunity for people who are in them, that will pay them a salary that will allow them to make ends meet.” He says those jobs represent a wide range of industries, such as manufacturing, healthcare and utilities, among others.

“It’s a wide, wide range of jobs and job types that they develop and, of course, the good news that they’re jobs that exist here. They’re jobs that people have and can have and can do and be trained to do,” said Johnson.

Johnson says one of the things the CICP can do with the information from the report is to make it available to the organization’s members, who are CEOs. He cites Indianapolis-based OneAmerica Financial Partners Inc. as an example. In conjunction with the report, OneAmerica announced this week the launch of its new Pathway to Sustainable Income program, which will allow employees not considered in the “good job” category to move up their level of pay through tenure and good performance.

“That’s tremendous leadership by example,” said Johnson. “It obviously takes, and the report is clear that to address this issue it will take, not only favorable markets and good economic conditions, it will take leadership by policy makers and by companies to really address the need for people to be able to have jobs that do a better job of making ends meet.”

You can view the full report below or by clicking here.