Nearly 128 million U.S. workers — about 70% of the entire US workforce — could stand to benefit from apprenticeships and on-the-job learning opportunities, opening up a key cohort of trained workers for employers, according to a Nov. 13 report by Multiverse and the Burning Glass Institute.

Apprenticeships still remain outside the mainstream in the U.S., the report said, but a U.S. workforce that would follow the U.K.’s “mature apprenticeship” system could host over 830,000 new apprenticeship opportunities per year, leading to $28.5 billion in wage increases.

The four cohorts of workers that could benefit from such a system include:

  • 36 million high-churn, low-wage workers without bachelor’s degrees.
  • 10.6 million career starters without bachelor’s degrees.
  • 12.8 million underemployed college graduates.
  • 68 million mid-career workers who are seeking a chance for better pay.

Examples of high-churn, low-wage jobs include truck drivers, retail salespeople, janitors, cooks and wait staff, the report noted. These jobs are also prone to automation. And while obtaining a degree can open up pathways to new job opportunities, many with degrees remain underemployed in jobs that are not using their skills well, the report said.

Read the full article about apprenticeships in the U.S. by Kathryn Moody at HR Dive .