Minnesota employers continue to face challenges filling key skilled positions as reports this week indicated the job market narrowed.

“There are many applicants but not exactly a good match with the skills required by the job.”

Alessia Leibert with the state Labor Market Information Office says businesses should be encouraged to provide on-the-job training, but that is a step many are not eager to take.

“They are afraid of poaching from competitors or they think that it’s going to be too costly, but in reality they might face more costs down the road if they don’t train now.”

Leibert says they are also hoping so-called “dual learning” programs expand statewide to give secondary and post-secondary students hands-on experience while still in the classroom.