Time to Tackle the Skilled Worker Shortage

On Thursday the United States Commerce Department reported there was little to no change in their final estimate for growth during the January to March quarter. With the economy only having expanded at the annual rate of 1.9 percent, economists project a dim outlook for the remainder of the year. Most say the economy will either stay the same or weaken somewhat due to the slowing job market and the waning confidence of consumers and businesses alike.

With the economy slowly crawling towards recovery, the skilled labor shortage remains a pressing issue. Many analysts say in order to solve the problem manufacturers must change their hiring approach and how the value their production employees. A survey by Deloitte and The Manufacturing Institute, “Boiling Point?”, backs this idea up and suggests a couple next steps to take.

First, the survey defines the difference in unskilled production workers, skilled production workers and the two types of engineers. The survey also concluded the greatest shortage is found in the skilled production segment of the manufacturing workforce.

Another point made in the survey is the fact that manufacturing practices are constantly evolving. Perhaps greatly due to the advancement of technology, as a result many workers find it harder to keep up with today’s standards. On the other hand, plant owners and hiring managers are equally at fault as a lot of their approaches to seeking out and hiring the right people for open positions are outdated.

As we ready ourselves for the inevitable mass exodus of baby boomers as they reach retirement age, something must be done now. While many agencies have taken the opportunity to present the manufacturing industry in a more positive light to today’s youth in an effort to pique their interest and ultimately increase the pool of skilled production workers, more needs to be done immediately. Manufacturing training is becoming a popular option within plants as a means of developing the industrial skills of current employees and new hires. With multiple delivery options, such as online courseware, full motion video courseware and even traditional classroom learning, manufacturing training helps to enhance the skill sets of your skilled labor workforce. With industrial training you are not only investing in the future of your employees but also in your plant.