WASHINGTON – The Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) released a new Workforce Planning Guide for states and territories to use when planning high-speed Internet deployment projects. The high-speed Internet deployment and digital equity projects funded through the Biden-Harris Administration’s Internet for All initiative will create over 150,000 of good-paying jobs.
To ensure states have the necessary workforce to deploy high-speed Internet projects, this guide is a resource and offers strategies to develop a highly trained, diverse workforce that can safely do their jobs to connect everyone in America to high-speed Internet.
“Women are underrepresented in telecommunications jobs. The Internet for All initiative can change this. We have an opportunity to diversify our workforce so it looks like America,” said Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo. “These good jobs are the foundation of an equitable economy that lifts up workers and families and makes businesses more competitive globally.”
The Internet for All initiative's Broadband, Equity, Access and Deployment (BEAD) program contains workforce requirements that grant recipients and subgrantees must meet when implementing their projects. This guide is part of NTIA’s obligation to provide technical assistance materials those entities need to meet the workforce requirements and promote a skilled workforce. The guide may also be helpful for entities participating in other Internet for All programs like the Digital Equity Planning Grant program and the Middle Mile program.
The Workforce Planning Guide addresses lays out strategies and examples for meeting our funding’s requirements and ensuring a skilled, competitive, and diverse workforce.
- Components of a Workforce Plan: Highlights the requirements and guidance related to workforce development and fair labor standards in the BEAD NOFO.
- Developing a Workforce Plan: Provides suggested planning steps and pacing for completing grant submissions and key integration points with the Digital Equity Act programs.
- Strategies and Examples: Offers a range of approaches to meet the workforce needs and offers examples of existing programs at the Federal, state, or local level.
- Additional Resources: Provides additional resources, including a list of Federal and state agencies that can help answer questions, guiding questions and resources that help conduct a landscape analysis, and a checklist of best practices that eligible entities can use when evaluating different workforce programs.
In addition to the Workforce Planning Guide, NTIA is providing technical assistance to states and grantees on workforce requirements through public, open webinars and one-on-one meetings.