Digital startups are ten times easier to create than traditional brick-and-mortar startups. They are also significantly less expensive to start since the bulk of their infrastructure is in the cloud, and support staff is available as needed online. Consequently, the digital economy offers a unique opportunity to mass-produce jobs and startup businesses.
Affordable Jobenomics Digital Academy & Business Generator Centers can generate well-paying digital careers in every city, town, community, or neighborhood that wants to prioritize locally owned business creation. Since only one-third of the U.S. workforce has the digital skills to succeed in the digital domain, the need is great.
Part 2: Digital Literacy
The United States workforce is woefully ill-equipped to perform and compete effectively in the digital domain. Although most working-age adults use the internet every day, they lack the skills to meet today’s growing demand for trained digital professionals.
Even though so-called digital natives (born in the post-1980 digital era) and digital immigrants (born before the digital age and later adopted the new technology) use the internet daily, most of these digital users do not possess the skills necessary to meet today’s growing demand for trained digital professionals.
Future American prosperity depends on digital literacy (the ability to interpret and create solutions in the digital domain) and competitiveness in the global digital economy. Per numerous experts (quoted below), the United States workforce is woefully ill-equipped to perform effectively even in today’s digital ecosystem.
Although most working-age adults use the internet every day, they don’t necessarily have the skills needed to meet today’s growing demand for trained digital professionals. Most literature on the digital technology revolution concentrates on trendsetting advanced technology. While bleeding edge technologies are critically important, the Jobenomics Digital Academy emphasizes the digital skills required by the middle-skill job market.
Per the Harvard Business School, “The lack of a properly skilled workforce is hindering the ability of American businesses to compete globally. Similarly, a lack of relevant skills hurts the average American’s ability to be more productive, earn more, and improve living standards. Millions of job postings go unfilled even as millions of people remain unemployed or underemployed.” 
Per the Technology Policy Institute, “the overwhelming majority of middle-skill jobs, which are positions that require some college education (such as a certificate or two-year degree), will involve digital skills.” “Too many of those who could fill middle-skill jobs lack the digital skills needed for them.” “The traditional job-training system is, for the most part, not suited to bridge these gaps.” “By 2022, the economy is projected to demand 3.4 million more middle-skill workers than what the labor force can provide.”
Per a Capital One/Burning Glass Technologies study, “More than 8 in 10 middle-skill jobs (82%) require digital skills.” “Digital middle-skill jobs represent roughly 38% of overall job postings.” “The number of jobs with digital skill requirements is growing faster, and the jobs pay more and offer greater opportunity for career advancement than jobs without those requirements.”
Per the National Skills Coalition, “A majority of jobs (52%) require skills training beyond a high school, but not a four-year degree. But too few of America’s workers—just 43%—have had access to the skills training necessary to fill these in-demand careers. Without access to inclusive, high-quality skills training, workers are locked out of opportunities to succeed, and local businesses can’t expand.”
The 2020 National Skills Coalition’s sobering report on U.S. digital literacy presented the following statistics about the dismal state of the American workforce in the digital domain: 
- Across all industries, data show that 31% of workers have no or limited digital skills, 35% have achieved a baseline level of proficiency and struggle with new digital tasks. Only 33% of workers have advanced digital skills to effectively work in the digital domain.
- The American workforce has “fragmented knowledge” of the digital ecosystem. Most Americans are comfortable using a mobile phone to text a photo but are not familiar with operating a mouse or uploading a job application.
- Fragmentation is particularly acute for the 23% of U.S. households that do not own a desktop or laptop computer, people that rely on smartphone-only access, or homes without broadband access.
- While it might seem that younger workers would be uniformly digitally literate, 43% of U.S. workers aged 16 to 34 have no or limited digital skills (24% and 29%, respectively).
- 61% of workers who score at the lowest skill level are men. At the other end of the spectrum, 54% of workers with advanced digital literacy skills are male.
- The plurality of workers with digital skills gaps are white (44% of no and 50% of the limited skill population). On the other hand, people of color are disproportionally disadvantaged percentage-wise since they are more likely to lack broadband internet access, lack a desktop or laptop computer, and face difficulties obtaining technology or training to build digital literacy skills.
- Worker skill gaps are an invisible drag on productivity. People often spend considerable extra time and effort covering for their skill gaps, “muddle through” work tasks, rely on help from co-workers or family members, or delay/avoid tasks that require digital skills.
- Roughly half of the workers with limited or no digital skills have low earnings and are usually dependent on small businesses for jobs. Given that small businesses employ tens of millions of Americans and represent an essential engine for new job creation, these skill gaps are especially concerning.
- Data show that a surprising number of workers with digital skill gaps are supervising other employees. 53% of workers with limited digital skills are supervisors (20% with no and 30% with limited digital skills).
- An alarmingly high percentage of workers who lack digital literacy skills (38% with no and 43% with limited skills) work in jobs that require substantive computer skills. Much of America’s critical infrastructure, businesses, and government agencies depend on high digital literacy.
- Twice as many workers with advanced digital skills receive company-provided on-the-job upskilling (training) than workers with no digital skills (58% versus 30%). Consequently, entities like the Jobenomics Digital Academy must fill the gap.
The National Skills Coalition recommends that policymakers “prioritize digital skill-building strategies that incorporate employer input in their design.” This statement authenticates the Jobenomics lifelong applied learning and transformation mapping principles of the Digital Academy. On the other hand, employers hire workers to work instead of train. Today, large corporations do not recruit unskilled labor. Instead, they poach skilled labor from other companies or upskill their most talented employees to keep them from being hijacked by another company. Small businesses cannot afford such practices nor afford to upskill employees. Therefore, employer-based reskilling and upskilling programs are unavailable for those who need them the most.
Part 3. Digital USA. (Caption) The digital economy offers a unique opportunity for U.S. policymakers to mass-produce jobs and startup businesses. Per a 2021 Confidence in (U.S.) Institutions Gallop poll, Americans rate small business institutions highest of sixteen categories with an approval rating of 70%, slightly higher than the second-place finisher, the U.S. military, with 69%. The police and medical system came in third and fourth with 51% and 44% ratings. Television news and Congress secured the bottom two positions at 16% and 12%, respectively.
Jobenomics specializes in mass-producing local startup businesses and sustainable jobs in underserved and under-resourced communities. The Jobenomics International Grassroots Movement has reached over 30 million people via national media, Jobenomics TV, website, blog, and lectures. As a result of this exposure, Jobenomics’ unique economic, community, business, and workforce development activities gained international recognition. Over forty cities and regions on four continents implemented Jobenomics Chapters. To meet local citizens’ immediate needs, Jobenomics forms partnerships with leading companies and institutions to create a wide variety of highly scalable startup programs that could quickly mass-produce new locally-owned and operated startup businesses.
The Jobenomics website contains numerous documents on Jobenomics initiatives and turnkey startup business programs. For more information, see https://jobenomics.com/ and https://jobenomics.com/library/.
 Havard Business School, U.S. Competitiveness, Bridge the Gap: Rebuilding America’s Middle Skills, https://www.hbs.edu/competitiveness/research/Pages/middle-skills.aspx
 Technology Policy Institute, Senior Fellow John B. Horrigan, Adapting Jobs Programs for Today and Tomorrow, August 2020, https://www.benton.org/sites/default/files/AdaptingJobsPrograms.pdf
 Burning Glass Technologies, Digital Skills Gap: Research on Digital Skills, Digital Literacy, and the Future of Work. 2017, https://www.burning-glass.com/wp-content/uploads/Digital_Edge_report_2017_final.pdf
 National Skills Coalition, The Skills Mismatch, https://www.nationalskillscoalition.org/skills-mismatch/
 National Skills Coalition, The New Landscape of Digital Literacy, How workers’ uneven digital skills affect economic mobility and business competitiveness, and what policymakers can do about it, by Amanda Bergson-Shilcock, May 2020, https://www.nationalskillscoalition.org/blog/future-of-work/nearly-1-in-3-workers-lack-foundational-digital-skills-new-report-finds/ and https://www.nationalskillscoalition.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/05-20-2020-NSC-New-Landscape-of-Digital-Literacy.pdf
 Gallup, Americans’ Confidence in Major U.S. Institutions Dips, 14 July 2021, https://news.gallup.com/poll/352316/americans-confidence-major-institutions-dips.aspx