New Google feature to help bridge the skills gap

'Pathways' feature can link job seekers with local training programmes

Man searching Google on laptop

Google has created a new feature for its search engine to help job seekers find local training programmes and find the skills employers are looking for.

The feature is called 'Pathways' and aims to help people find useful information about the skills and training they need for a job and better connect them with local resources that can help them realise those opportunities.

"We want to help people everywhere and believe these opportunities should be more discoverable online," Nick Zakrasek, Google product manager wrote in a blog post. "That's why today we're announcing a new feature within job search called Pathways - part of our Grow with Google initiative to ensure economic opportunity for everyone.

"When someone searches for jobs on Google, we'll show not only jobs available right now in their area, but also information about effective local training and education programs."

Google has started a pilot of Pathways in Virginia, where it has partnered with leading organisations in the area, including the State of Virginia, the Virginia Community College System and many local employers to make programs more discoverable through search.

There is also a pilot with Goodwill, a nonprofit job training provider in America. As part of the Pathways initiative,  volunteer Google engineers will work with local Goodwill organisations to ensure their education and training programs are easily found on the open web.

Google believes that these pilots will help it to develop new features and ensure that program information is readily accessible to everyone, with the long-term aim to roll it out to more countries in the future.

It's all part of the tech giants 20-year anniversary which has seen it roll out a host of new features, such as including more visual results into search and an AI tool to help predict areas likely to flood.

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