What’s the future of the Louisiana worker? What a loaded question. Sometimes we get so caught up asking about the future that we forget that it’s already here.
Chew on this: in 2020, mining for oil & gas accounted for around 1% of Louisiana’s GDP. That’s down from around 10% a decade ago.
Louisiana has been in a pivot for a long time. And while we often talk about this change in terms of economic output, the real question is what happens to our workforce?
Don’t count out innovation and manufacturing.
Missy Rogers and her husband Scott founded Noble Plastics, which manufactures all kinds of custom, plastic molded products for a range of industries. Visit their facility in Grand Coteau and you’ll find robots whirring and a few dozen highly specialized employees.
Noble’s edge is taking both design and manufacturing in-house. They don’t just make things, they make the things that make things. A part of the company’s line is designing robotic machines and processes for other manufacturers.
Here’s a blue ocean strategy for Louisiana: digital wallets.
Louisiana is a pioneer in allowing residents to digitize their IDs and drivers licenses. Today, more than 1 million people use LA Digital Wallet, and during the pandemic around half a million people opted into a feature that allows you to digitize your vaccine card.
Calvin Fabre is the man behind that innovation with his company Envoc.
Digital credentialing is a pretty big space. Outside of state IDs, Envoc has developed a line of commercial verification and logistics apps for cargo shipping, inspection services and grading bubble sheet tests. LA Wallet itself is a growing service, and Calvin is actively pursuing Louisiana grads to staff it up.
Out to Lunch Acadiana is recorded over lunch at Tula Tacos and Amigos in downtown Lafayette. Photos by Astor Morgan. Check out Calvin Fabre’s last visit to Out to Lunch here when he was just launching LA Wallet.