Understanding the Skills Gap: Approaches from Job Analysis

L. M. Hanser

Employees find themselves struggling to succeed in the new high performance workplaces of the 1990s. But what skills are actually needed, and how can they be measured? Hanser suggests that because the high-performance workplace requires more abstract operations-problem-solving, inference, diagnosis, and judgment-cognitive task analysis may be a better way to describe jobs than traditional, task-focused analysis. This research will be of special interest to those involved with school-to-work transition, which has been hindered by the inability of traditional job analysis to identify skills needed in the high performance workplace. This report is an innovative effort to bring together the fields of industrial and cognitive psychology with school-to-work transition literature.

MDS-1027 / November 1996

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