The people who work in the communications industries.

Looking ahead: Building up the fiber workforce

Fiber network deployments in the US, while hitting a bit of a slowdown, are proceeding apace and will ramp up significantly as grants start to roll out from the $42.45 billion Broadband Equity Access and Deployment (BEAD) program in 2025.

Remote Work Is Here to Stay

More than three years after pandemic shutdowns forced employers and employees to shift toward remote work if they could, it seems that for a portion of working Californians, remote and hybrid work is here to stay. According to the November 2023 Public Policy Institute of California Statewide Survey, 14 percent of Californians say they work remotely all of the time, 21 percent are working in a mix of some work from home and some outside the home at the workplace, and 61 percent say they are working exclusively in person at the workplace.

Here's how states are tackling the broadband workforce gap

What are states doing to mitigate the broadband worker shortage? In some cases, they’re looking at the prison system for prospective technician hires. Thomas Tyler, deputy director of Louisiana’s broadband office, mentioned how a community college in the northern part of Louisiana stood up a career development program for prisoners who were getting released. MJ Barton, Tribal and Programs Outreach Manager at the Oklahoma Broadband Office, said her state “has skill centers” in its prisons and is looking at programs “that will help lift someone else up and give them an opportunity.”

Lack of broadband, housing, challenge rural counties on workforce development

Although the lack of broadband, transit, childcare and housing are all stacked against rural counties as they develop the kind of robust workforce that can attract business, planning and relationships between state and local government can help alleviate some of those challenges. That’s the assessment various practitioners in the workforce development field offered during the Rural Action Caucus Symposium in Greenbrier County (WV). West Virginia faces steep challenges in delivering broadband connectivity to residents, given both the population distribution and the geography. Without housing

Justice Department Secures $25 Million Landmark Agreement with Apple to Resolve Employment Discrimination Allegations Based on Citizenship Status

The Justice Department secured a landmark agreement with Apple to resolve allegations that Apple illegally discriminated in hiring and recruitment against U.S. citizens and certain non-U.S. citizens whose permission to live in and work in the United States does not expire.



Thu, 11/16/2023 - 15:00

To design and build the networks necessary to meet the growing demand for fiber broadband, the industry estimates that more than 175,000 new jobs will be needed over the next three years. Without these specialized positions, growth could be stymied, especially in rural areas, which struggle to attract local skilled resources.

An informative panel discussion on the impact this labor shortage and costs have had on their efforts to connect rural North America. You’ll hear firsthand accounts of the challenges they’ve faced—and solutions they’ve implemented to deal with:

Lumen Technologies reports third quarter 2023 results

Lumen Technologies reported results for the third quarter ended September 30, 2023. The company reported a loss of $78 million on $578 million of net income. The company is laying off four percent of its employees. Lumen also struck a deal with a group of creditors holding more than $7 billion of company debt that will extend debt securities and commit $1.2 billion of financing through new long-term debt. Lumen also dialed back the pace of the ongoing fiber buildout at its Mass Markets unit.

Broadband Workforce Survey Shows Challenges Providers Expect During BEAD Rollout

recently released survey of fixed-broadband providers demonstrates their workforce expectations as the Broadband Equity, Access, and Deployment (BEAD) Program gains momentum across states. Representatives of 46 broadband providers—including electric cooperatives and fixed-wireless, telephone, and cable companies—completed the survey. These providers typically served between 5,000 and 50,000 customers.

President Biden Issues Executive Order on Safe, Secure, and Trustworthy Artificial Intelligence

President Biden issued a landmark Executive Order to ensure that America leads the way in seizing the promise and managing the risks of artificial intelligence (AI). The Executive Order establishes new standards for AI safety and security, protects Americans’ privacy, advances equity and civil rights, stands up for consumers and workers, promotes innovation and competition, advances American leadership around the world, and more. The Executive Order directs the following actions:

Verizon to hire 1,800 techs for East Coast broadband expansion

Verizon is hiring 1,800 additional technicians to support its East Coast broadband expansion efforts in New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Virginia, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware and Washington (DC). Many of the targeted markets are rural and traditionally underserved communities, and so they qualify for funding from the American Rescue Plan Act.