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Doctoral Project Abstract

Accessing Strategic Foresight: The Future of the Workforce

Norma Brandon

The future landscape for the workplace is rapidly changing and decision-makers must be proactive in recognizing these changes, determining how they will impact the organization and then being the catalyst of change. As the older generation becomes eligible for retirement, the federal government will be faced with a tough decision in replacing, training, and retaining the future workforce. However, in order to understand the changing workforce and the impact of this new environment, leaders will need to develop and implement strategic foresight skills. Workforce analysis is being conducted by the Department of Defense (DoD) and other Federal government agencies to develop a workforce plan that will determine the future of the workforce. Presently DoD has lacked the database systems (to verify and validate) needed to identify gaps that will aid them in determining the skill/competencies needed in the future workforce. Also, inconsistency was identified across the organization stemming from lack of standardized application across and within agencies. The Federal government workforce compromises of multi-generational cohorts (Veterans, Boomers, Xers, and Nexters). Boomer accounts for the largest population and is projected to postpone retirement. Also, by 2015, the workforce for DoD executive talents will experience a shortage, with more than 50% of senior executive service eligible for retirement. The sense of urgency to prepare the future workforce is a challenge for leaders among federal, private, and global organizations that are competing for the same talents.

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