Skilled Mfg Worker Shortage Coming ... But Not Here Yet PDF Print E-mail
Written by Chelsey Drysdale   
Wednesday, 24 October 2012 17:31

BOSTON – A widespread shortage of high-skilled manufacturing workers in the US is overstated, but it will be an emerging problem by the end of the decade, says a new report from Boston Consulting Group.

The firm estimates US employers now lack 80,000 to 100,000 high-skilled manufacturing workers, which would represent about 7% of the nation’s total high-skilled manufacturing workforce of 1.4 million. The shortages, however, are only in certain areas and certain occupations. For example, welders, machinists and industrial machine mechanics are in short supply in the Southeast and Gulf Coast areas.

The firm is warning, however, of a looming shortage of 875,000 machinists, welders, industrial engineers and industrial machinery mechanics by 2020, as thousands of older workers retire. The average high-skilled US manufacturing worker is 56 years-old, the firm said.

For its study, Boston Consulting searched for jobs that had experienced wage growth of more than 3% annually during the past five years. Companies that train workers for a few months did not show a skills gap problem, according to the report.

 

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