Category: Workforce / Skills Gap

Manufacturing Skills Gap: The Problem and a Solution

  Manufacturing has been a stronghold in our society for generations, and the industry continues to play a significant role in today’s economy, contributing to financial growth, prosperity, national security and technological innovation. Not since the industrial revolution of the 1800s have we seen so much groundbreaking technology sweep the industry as we are today. Companies leading today’s rapid growth are investing heavily in mechanization and reaping generous rewards from their efforts. Smart manufacturing – including automation, robotics and the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) – is transforming the competitive landscape, allowing for increased flexibility in our factories and plants,...

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Community Colleges: Training the Next Generation of Manufacturers

Training skilled workers is critical to strengthening the U.S. manufacturing sector, especially at a time when about 2 million manufacturing jobs are projected to remain unfilled, due to the worsening skills gap that is taking place throughout the country. For several years, manufacturers and manufacturing benefactors have explored the cause, and the majority agreed that community colleges can increase their efforts to train the next generation of manufacturers. With globalization and manufacturing barely catching up with the rapid pace in new technologies, the industry is evolving and changing dramatically such that workers’ skill sets can’t keep step with these constant...

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Accelerating Innovation in Manufacturing: A Look Ahead

This month, MForesight took part in the annual conference of SSTI, a national nonprofit that works to strengthen initiatives to create a better future through science, technology, innovation and entrepreneurship. Approximately 40 participants joined MForesight at the event on September 14 in Washington, DC to explore a range of topics and initiatives: enhancing performance across the supply chain, improving cybersecurity for manufacturers, and developing an advanced manufacturing workforce. MForesight Managing Director Christine Andres provided an overview of MForesight’s recent work, including a new major report on supply chains. Phil Singerman, Associate Director for Innovation and Industry Services at the National Institute...

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Celebrate Manufacturing Day with a Virtual Day of Learning and Collaboration

Streaming LIVE from Discovery’s Global Headquarters in Silver Spring, MD |  11 AM, Noon, and 1 PM ET Looking for opportunities to introduce your students to diverse and innovative STEM careers? Join Discovery Education and Arconic Foundation on October 6th for a virtual Day of Learning on Manufacturing Day. Tune in at the top of each hour for 15 minutes of inspiration and activities that you can use to power your participation in MFG Day. 11:00am- 11:15am ET- Celebrating MFG Day Learn all about MFG Day, why it was started and how modern manufacturing is a force through which careers of...

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Top 5 Reasons You Should Consider a Career in Manufacturing

It’s no secret that the U.S. manufacturing industry is facing a skilled labor shortage. According to a study by Deloitte and The Manufacturing Institute, “The skills gap in U.S. manufacturing: 2015 and beyond”, over the next decade 3.5 million manufacturing jobs will likely be available, yet 2 million of those career positions will remain unfilled. The current talent shortage, also known as the “skills gap”, will continue. It will only get worse as retirement and technological advancements escalate the crisis. This gap is affecting businesses in the areas of productivity, customer service, expansion, and innovation, to name a few. So why should...

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The Myth of the Skills Gap

The idea that American workers are being left in the dust because they lack technological savvy does not stand up to scrutiny. Our focus should be on coordination and communication between workers and employers. by Andrew Weaver  August 25, 2017 The contention that America’s workers lack the skills employers demand is an article of faith among analysts, politicians, and pundits of every stripe, from conservative tax cutters to liberal advocates of job training. Technology enthusiasts and entrepreneurs are among the loudest voices declaiming this conventional wisdom (see “The Hunt for Qualified Workers”). Two recent developments have heightened debate over the...

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The Advantages of Creating a Flexible Workforce

The economic downturn in 2008, which began with the bursting of an 8 trillion dollar housing bubble, had a substantial impact on the job market. In 2008 and 2009, the U.S. labor market lost 8.4 million jobs, or 6.1% of all payroll employment, producing by far the largest labor contraction of any recession since the Great Depression. During this period, businesses from a variety of different industries recorded significant job losses: Hewlett-Packard – 47,540 jobs General Motors – 107,357 jobs Citigroup – 73,056 jobs Verizon Wireless – 39,000 jobs Pfizer – 31,771 jobs Dow Chemical – 17,530 jobs Although economic recovery from...

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Investing in the next generation: A bottom-up approach to creating better outcomes for children and youth

The American dream is built on the promise of upward social mobility. In the middle of the 20th century, rates of upward mobility improved across the socioeconomic spectrum. But over the course of the past 30 years, the vast majority of our population has seen mobility rates stagnate.[1] For too many, the American dream has stalled.    Restoring higher levels of social mobility will be among the most important political, social, and economic challenges of our time. Already, we’ve witnessed how frustration over this stagnation can destabilize our national institutions and divide our society. The longer we wait to address...

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Sensing a Disruption in the (Labor) Force

Normally, when you think of disruptions in the labor force, you’re thinking in traditional terms like those reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics: employment vs. unemployment, hires vs. separations in the form of layoffs or retirements, etc., and more recently “marginally attached” and “discouraged workers” who are not in the labor force. In the advanced manufacturing technology industry and other high-tech industries like healthcare and computer science, it’s been well documented that we’ve been challenged by the widening gap in our ability to attract skilled workers. The number of people seeking a post-secondary education or workforce training programs...

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Oh-Penn Network Boosts Apprenticeship Programs

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – The Greater Oh-Penn Manufacturing Apprentice Network, a collaboration of 14 counties in northeastern Ohio and northwestern Pennsylvania, is making headway in its efforts to boost apprenticeship training in the region’s manufacturing sector. According to the most recent Apprentice Network update from the Oh-Penn Manufacturing Collaborative, 20 manufacturers report they have benefited from a $2.9 million grant that the U.S. Department of Labor awarded the collaborative nearly two years ago. The grant provides reimbursements to employers willing to institute apprenticeship programs within their companies. The grant money is used to offset the costs of training new apprentices...

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Millennials Seek Job Stability, Flexibility

A new Deloitte Global survey concludes that many millennials are uneasy about the future and seek to combine the stability of a permanent job with the flexibility of freelancing. Conventional wisdom says millennials pose a flight risk to their employers, but that may be changing. Uncertainty over economic, political, and social conditions and anxiety about the future could make it easier for CIOs to recruit and retain millennial technology professionals, according to the 2017 Deloitte Millennial Survey. Based on the views of nearly 8,000 global participants born after 1982, the annual survey finds that many millennials—especially those in developed...

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Onboarding The Next Generation Workforce In Manufacturing

The new, totally-digital workforce generation won’t just want a streamlined and technologically sophisticated process — they’ll expect it. While the rate of digital transformation and technology adoption varies across manufacturing organizations, one thing is certain — organizations need to onboard their employees in a way that enables them to be productive at the onset. Onboarding new employees to their preferences remains a challenge for many organizations. The next generation of employees will be even more connected than today. With Generation Z — the first true digital natives — beginning to enter the workforce, manufacturers need a simple and effective...

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The Future of Jobs and Jobs Training

As robots, automation and artificial intelligence perform more tasks and there is massive disruption of jobs, experts say a wider array of education and skills-building programs will be created to meet new demands. There are two uncertainties: Will well-prepared workers be able to keep up in the race with AI tools? And will market capitalism survive? Machines are eating humans’ jobs talents. And it’s not just about jobs that are repetitive and low-skill. Automation, robotics, algorithms and artificial intelligence (AI) in recent times have shown they can do equal or sometimes even better work than humans who are dermatologists,...

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3 Workforce Initiatives with Promising and Proven Results

Workforce initiatives with promising and proven results Keeping up with training and finding the right workforce can be frustrating, especially when multiple areas of a company may need attention. Although it may not seem to be the most pressing matter, a solid workforce is the strongest foundational element to the rest of production. It cannot be pushed to the back burner. Taking strategic action will be a smart use of your extra resources. Do not exhaust yourself, choose wisely and look at programs which are either promising positive results or have already achieved them. These three states have initiatives...

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What Is An Apprenticeship And How Do I Get One?

Apprenticeships are very important to the future of the workforce, but what are the details? These answers will help you learn more about them. How does an apprenticeship typically work? An apprenticeship is a structured accreditation program that provides participants with the building blocks to master a specific occupational area and learn hands-on skills under the direct supervision of a skilled expert. It is important to note that because apprenticeships are a nascent industry in the United States, they are often confused with internships. In fact, at present, the line is very fine between the two. Briefly, internships are...

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Cars are Her Canvas: An Artist Builds a Career in Collision Repair

Elise Groenewold says she notices some people are quietly skeptical when she enters the shop with cars That is until they see her sanding, welding and painting. The artist-turned-auto body worker has been interested in cars since adolescence, but she didn’t really think about working on them until she was in college. Elise was earning her degree in fine arts, and she realized she was shifting gears when her artwork transitioned from still life drawings of flowers to sketches of cars and trucks. Elise’s interest turned into a passion, and she went on to complete a degree in collision...

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Manufacturing A Future For The Next Generation Workforce

As the manufacturing industry loses its experienced workforce to retirement, one would expect the next generation to be prepared to step in — but unfortunately, for many companies, that isn’t the case. To address these challenges — and tighten the growing skills gap — there are several practices manufacturers can implement to best position themselves for success. Today, the U.S. manufacturing industry faces many challenges, yet perhaps the most significant is the current — and growing — skills gap with six out of ten production positions going unfilled due to a talent shortage. Closing the gap is a priority, but...

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With Great Apprenticeships Comes a Strong Workforce

Apprenticeships are quite possibly the greatest asset to companies and the future of the workplace. Not only is the company with apprentices customizing its workers, the workforce is learning real-world knowledge.   President Trump has made a move advocating for apprenticeships. He believes that teenagers should have broad access to them. “We want a future where every high school in America offers apprenticeship,” said President Trump at a vocational program at a community college in Wisconsin on Tuesday.  The president intends to expand industry-certified programs. Directives aimed at emphasizing and reorganizing government job-training programs will be designed with the goal of streamlining...

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How Knowledge Transfer Positions Businesses for Success – #FutureofWork

Companies of all sizes are constantly looking for a competitive edge to when it comes to driving sales and increasing revenue. All too often their focus is on technology and tools, rather than the human resources and the vast wealth of knowledge these individuals possess. In fact, in far too many instances, there’s not only no consideration given to these human resources and their expertise, but also no plan in place to capture and transfer that knowledge to others within the organization. Technology is great, but it doesn’t replace experience and intimate, insider knowledge about a company’s history, products,...

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Green Bay Welding Classes Spark Interest for Girls

REEN BAY – Just 12 years old, Ivy Durant isn’t in a rush to make a decision on a career path to take when she gets older. The seventh-grader at Franklin Middle School has been tossing around a few ideas, however. “At first, I wanted to be a geologist,” she said. “Then, I wanted to be an astrophysicist, and then I wanted to be an astronomer, and then I wanted to be a geologist again.” Add welder to the list. Make that atop the list after Ivy participated with a few other adolescent girls — and their mothers —...

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A Signal In the Sky: Mobile Manufacturing Training Answers the Call

Manufacturing Training Where the Jobs Are, the Employers Are, and the People Are When there’s trouble in Gotham, a signal in the sky calls Batman to where he is needed. Much like the dark knight, Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C) is answering calls for help, but in manufacturing. Manufacturers are looking for ways to train and upscale their workforce. Sometimes, in-house training isn’t always easy to do. Additionally, manufacturers are seeking to inspire talent to enter into the manufacturing workforce. Tri-C has come up with a brilliant solution to this problem. Tri-C’s mobile training unit is a 53-foot long truck. The mobility option allows...

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Pulse Check: Workforce Insights Revealed

This week, Tooling-U SME had an extraordinary opportunity to gather manufacturers together from across the country at their annual tuX event – and get a read on how things are going in the industry related to training and development. Some feedback was not surprising. For instance, a poll of attendees found that nearly everyone (98%) said production is impacted by lack of skilled workers. We all know the skills gap is very real. If companies aren’t building a pipeline of workers and addressing the situation now, they will be in trouble. Fortunately, Tooling-U heard from a number of manufacturers that are...

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Meet the Winners of the This Old House Generation NEXT Casting Call

After launching a nationwide search for three apprentices to work alongside their expert This Old House crew, This Old House has found their winners! Get to know them before they make their TOH TV debut next season as they work on a home in Newton, MA. Bailey Beers, 18 | Hermon, ME PHOTO BY ERIN LITTLE   Bailey Beers will complete her first year of college as a building construction student before she heads from Hermon, Maine to Newton for her apprenticeship with TOH. The 18-year-old keeps a busy schedule: her day begins with a job at Home Depot in the mornings...

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Three Reasons Why Manufacturing Jobs are Suited to Millennials

The manufacturing industry has a considerable employment hole to fill due to a looming skills gap. This is a daily fact we are coping with and are well aware of. One of the best ways to combat this issue is by putting more emphasis on what a great industry it is for young people to enter. Since the younger generation loves lists, here is a top three list of reasons to give millennials on why manufacturing is a great career choice. Reason 1 – Well paying positions. According to the NTMA (National Tooling & Machining Association), those in a...

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Get Involved With Apprenticeship Forward

Apprenticeship Forward, May 4th-5th, 2017 Conference program now available! Apprenticeship Forward is a national conference that will help chart a path toward a future where millions more American workers and businesses reap the benefits of a high performing apprenticeship system built through the collaboration of the public, private, and philanthropic sectors.  Date: May 4th-5th, 2017 Location: Washington Hilton, 1919 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, DC 20009 Sponsoring Partners:  National Skills Coalition, New America, AFL-CIO Working for America Institute, Advance CTE, Jobs for the Future, National Association of Workforce Boards, National Fund for Workforce Solutions, National Governors Association, and Urban Institute (list in formation).  With the support of Annie E. Casey Foundation, Joyce Foundation, The JPB...

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You’re Dependable, Loyal, Driven and Ready For Your Next Mission in Manufacturing

YOU’VE SERVED YOUR COUNTRY—NOW SERVE YOUR CAREER Manufacturing companies are looking for talent like you. To be on the front lines of innovation. Making a better future. Literally. Do you have what it takes? Operation Next is a hybrid virtual and lab-based learning program that will give you the skills and credentials you need.     Manufacturing Is a Career. Not Just a Job. Operation Next gives you foundational training to prepare you for one of the two most in-demand jobs in the country: CNC machining and Industrial Technology Maintenance. From here, you can advance within these jobs or...

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OJT (On the Job Training) Best Practices: Part II

Last week, Tooling-U started looking at best practices for on-the-job training (OJT). With an incoming pipeline of unskilled workers, OJT is more important than ever. Manufacturers that are out in front of the skills gap are formalizing — and validating — the transfer of knowledge from seasoned employees to younger members of the workforce. Scenarios differ – some companies are fending off the “silver tsunami” of retirements. Others are opening new facilities and need additional workers to support their growth. Last week, we talked about three best practices: Standardized Tools, Train the Trainer, and Clear Progression Models. Here are three...

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Associations Work to Tackle Industry Workforce Shortages Head-On

The following article is by Emily Bratcher, an Associate Editor for Associations Now. Over here at Associations Now, we hear from a lot of associations about how their industries are facing workforce shortages. The scarcity of workers is sometimes because the current pool is preparing to retire; sometimes it’s because there’s a stigma surrounding a certain industry; and sometimes it’s simply because youngsters don’t know about certain careers. Take landscape architecture, for instance. “Most people still don’t really know what landscape architecture is,” said Shawn Balon, career discovery and diversity manager at the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA). To be...

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Millennials More Upbeat On Manufacturing’s Future

A more optimistic outlook among millennials about the future of manufacturing could bode well for an industry that is contending with an ongoing skills shortage. Nearly half of U.S. millennials (47 percent) think there will be enough qualified professionals to fill manufacturing job demands in the next 10 years, according to a survey by digital manufacturer Proto Labs. That’s a marked increase from the only 35 percent of Generation Xers and baby boomers who think the jobs demand will be met. The rosier outlook may be linked to millennials’ changing perceptions of manufacturing. According to the survey, 37 percent of...

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The Nuts and Bolts of Newton’s LigerBots

The workshop at Newton South resembles a true inventor’s studio brimming with springs, gears, and metal parts — even a sewing machine. Here, teens from across the city tinker with parts, aspiring to make the best high school robot in the country, maybe even the world.   The LigerBots robotics team first started in 2008 and combines students from Newton North and South. Students work six days a week creating a robot. “I joined because I was interested in robotics and was interested in engineering,” said Arushi Singh, a junior. “I didn’t not think I would be as committed...

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Ready For Takeoff: Apprenticeship Program Is Launching Jet Engine Factory Jobs For Small-Town Kids

Chip Singleton has lived his whole life in Canton, North Carolina, a small town tucked in a narrow valley in the state’s mountainous western corner. He met his wife, Patty, at the Pisgah High School — the only high school in town — and 25 years later, they both teach there; she drafting and he metal shop. But Singleton’s Great Smoky Mountains roots didn’t stop him from seeking inspiration in faraway places. He specifically zeroed in on Germany, Europe’s economic dynamo famous for its rigorous apprenticeship programs that prepare teenagers for manufacturing jobs. Students in these programs split their time...

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It’s Time to Educate the Next Generation– Manufacturing Competitions Receive Support from Companies at SkillsUSA

Written by Max Egan, a junior at Turpin High School in Cincinnati, Ohio this fall.   Without the chance to see for themselves what a job in the manufacturing sector could hold, many young people like myself (I’m 16 and completing an internship at Gardner Business Media this summer) are said to be turning their heads away from the industry entirely. According to the 2015 Skills Gap survey conducted by The Manufacturing Institute and Deloitte, “only 37 percent of respondents in the 2015 study indicated they would encourage their children to pursue a manufacturing career,” even though most respondents agreed that manufacturing is essential to our national...

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Community Colleges Changing Career Training for Future Jobs

Gov. Jerry Brown and legislative leaders recently approved a plan to repair our state’s aging roads and bridges bringing economic and workforce issues to the forefront of the conversation. Modernizing infrastructure deserves to be a top public priority, but for workers to benefit and prosper in our economy, they must have access to necessary skills. A generation ago, high school graduates could aspire to apply for jobs at local manufacturing or warehouse facilities, work there for their entire careers, and earn wages that would allow them and their families to maintain a middle-class lifestyle. This is no longer the...

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IMPO Onsite: Workshops For Warriors Facility Fills Needs Of Veterans, American Advanced Mfg

There is a lot of talk going around about the skills gap — the more than 2 million advanced manufacturing jobs that will go unfilled due to a lack of skilled labor and an aging workforce. In an effort to fill those jobs, some companies are investing in apprenticeship programs or paying headhunters to find skilled workers. However, one training facility in California may have found a better solution. Take 2.3 million advanced manufacturing jobs that are expected to go unfilled over the next decade, add the more than 1 million veterans transitioning out of the military over the...

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LIFT Joins Youngstown State University Research Foundation in Developing Advanced Manufacturing “Teaching Factory”

Development of the Mahoning Valley Innovation & Commercialization Center (MVICC) Will Help Prepare Workers to Use Evolving State-of-the-Art Manufacturing Technologies.   YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – As manufacturing becomes increasingly advanced, the industry will need workers with more technical skills to work on and operate the high-tech equipment the manufacturing industry is using today and that will be developed in the future. For Ohio manufacturers to meet this growing need, LIFT – Lightweight Innovations For Tomorrow – has joined a partnership among Mahoning Valley manufacturers, educators at all levels, and workforce developers, led by Youngstown State University Research Foundation (YSURF), to...

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Tri-C Moves the Mountain: See Their New Mobile Training Truck at the IW M&T Conference & Expo

The most innovative way to make sure everyone can access training? Bring the training to them…without the need to build on-site training facilities.  Cleveland’s own Cuyahoga Community College, or Tri-C, has done just that with its new mobile training unit, available to tour on-site at the IndustryWeek Manufacturing & Technology Conference & Expo in Cleveland, May 8-10. The 53-foot long truck offers a 10-person training lab and a 10-person classroom. The lab can be modified to offer many different types of trainings, and has already conducted sessions on CNC machining, welding techniques, 3D printing, and programmable logic control.  The truck travels to...

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Study: Millennials in the Workplace – Which Stereotypes are True?

There are tons of stereotypes surrounding how millennials compare to non-millennials, especially in the workplace. With millennials now taking up 35% of the workforce (Pew Research Center), it’s important to know which stereotypes stem from truth and which are completely false. This will help HR managers and small business owners understand what this age group really wants from their jobs and lead to better relationships between employers and employees. We conducted a survey in March, 2017 of 600 individuals between the ages of 18-65+ to get a handle on not only what millennials want but how this compares to other...

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STEP Ahead 2017 – Women in Manufacturing

  Manufacturing faces a serious skills gap. Part of this gap is the underrepresentation of women in the industry.Women make up about 47 percent of the labor force, but only 27 percent of the manufacturing workforce. To help improve upon this, The Manufacturing Institute is promoting the role of women in manufacturing through the STEP (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Production) Ahead initiative, which serves to mentor and recognize women while also leading research efforts tackling this important topic. The Manufacturing Institute launched the STEP Ahead initiative in 2012 to celebrate women in the manufacturing industry that are making a...

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Is It Just A Job Or Is It A Career? How To Address The Employment Gap

In this competitive talent marketplace, one of the biggest worries for employers this year is retaining skilled workers, while industries like manufacturing become more technical and require advanced skills. Many current employees struggle to identify their future within the company and some, not finding a good answer or the tech training to advance, may jump to a different employer for only a few cents more an hour. One solution for employers is developing clear career paths for all employees. This means when new workers are hired, they receive information on these career paths, providing motivation for them to grow within the company and...

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Consider These Options for Workforce Training

The future of the manufacturing and industrial workforce is important and we enjoy learning about some of the best practices happening nationally. Below you’ll find what is currently happening in workforce training in various sections of the country as well as trends, and practices worth considering. Take a look! Consider These… Corporate Training Saving college and the workforce through corporate training. Re-engineering institutions according to a placement paradigm. This paradigm is a hybrid borrowing aspects of postsecondary institutions and workforce investment boards. The education is put together based upon the potential job openings. Its goal is getting students well-prepared and ready for these positions. This requires examining what...

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Cuyahoga Community College Mobile Training Center Brings Manufacturing Education to Students and Companies

The skills gap is an ongoing issue and community colleges are working to educate those who need it. Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C) is one of the colleges working to bridge the gap and encourage a career in manufacturing.  In a state that has long driven manufacturing, Tri-C is steeped in a region rich in manufacturing. The community college opened in 1963 as Ohio’s first community college. Tri-C’s Manufacturing Technology Center of Excellence in Northeast Ohio has long recognized the need for trained professionals in the region. As a result, it is working to expand its customized training solutions. With the release of its new mobile training...

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8 Quick & Simple Tips for Companies and Students on Getting The Most Value Out of Career Fairs

Attending career fairs are not just chances to hand out resumes, they’re opportunities to prepare for future advancements. Come prepared to a career fair to get value. Whether you’re a company or a student, there are a few tips to keep in mind before attending career fairs or similar events. After speaking to several attendees at the Youngstown State University STEM Career Fair about their best practices and helpful tips, here’s what we learned:    For the Companies  Be diverse, bringing in all kinds of representatives to show the difference facets of your company. However, make sure to bring...

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Millennials: The Rise of the Everyday Changemaker

Nearly a decade ago, the Case Foundation declared that the millennial generation (born 1980 to 1999) would fundamentally “change how change is made.” And, indeed they have. Whether it was breaking down traditional organizational structures; leveraging technology to disrupt fundraising, volunteerism and activism; modernizing social networks; or demanding new norms for transparency and impact from organizations; this generation has reshaped the social sector in ways that we could not have anticipated. Now, having disrupted the social sector, millennials no longer fit the traditional definition of a changemaker. Today, the Foundation in partnership with Achieve, released the final installment of the 2016 Millennial...

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Training Students to Outpace Automation

DETROIT—Three young men in the back of a classroom at Henry Ford College stare intently at a machine that helps move panels along a conveyor belt. To the untrained eye, there doesn’t appear to be much going on, at least initially. But after several moments of careful inspection, the students exchange a few ideas, make a couple of swift adjustments to the machine, and earn a nod of approval from an instructor standing nearby. The group has correctly identified an issue with a sensor that the teacher intentionally created to test the students’ problem-solving prowess. Click Here to Read...

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Manufacturing CEOs to Trump: It’s Not Jobs We Need, It’s Skills

White House officials said Trump heard the CEOs’ concerns about a shortage of qualified workers and said he supports efforts to increase training for factory jobs. But they didn’t provide details.   WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump brought two dozen manufacturing CEOs to the White House on Thursday and declared their collective commitment to restoring factory jobs lost to foreign competition. Yet some of the CEOs suggested that there were still plenty of openings for U.S. factory jobs but too few qualified people to fill them. They urged the White House to support vocational training for the high-tech...

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Manufacturers Prep to Replace Retiring Workforce

As most manufacturing businesses know, a high level of knowledge and skill will e exiting the workforce as Baby Boomers retire. Companies are working to adapt to this shift by recruiting younger members of the workforce. This recruitment includes partnering with local educational institutions for students graduating high school as well as adding in flexibility for appeal. Additionally, companies, whether facing the Baby Boomer retirement or not, are working to innovate and prepare for the years ahead.    LIMA — For some companies, an aging workforce is a concern, especially when it means years of experience and skills could...

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The 2017 Work Ethic Scholarship Program launches Monday, March 20, 2017

For the fourth year in a row, the time has come to announce another pile of free money available for the Work Ethic Scholarship Program, a program that gives scholarships to people getting trained for skilled jobs that are in demand. The 2017 Work Ethic Scholarship Program launches Monday, March 20, 2017. Anyone with a pulse, and a desire to learn a trade, is invited to apply at that time. If you think you’ve got what it takes, there are some hoops to jump through. Here are a few of them that set us apart from other programs: The S.W.E.A.T....

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Hiring for the Factory Floor — Are Hard Skills or Soft Skills More Important?

“We don’t just pay a person for their skills. We also pay for their attitudes and their behaviors.” — Larry E. Fast It’s true that there are a lot of factors influencing the manufacturing workforce of today. Whether it’s the new technologies and or a perception of the industry, manufacturing’s workforce is falling behind. Yet, when hiring the question still remains as to whether hard skills or soft skills matter more. Manufacturers have discussed the issue and many say both.   As is often the case, it depends. Larry Fast, founder and president of Pathways to Manufacturing Excellence and a veteran of 35 years...

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The Truth About Jobs in America … And What It Means for You

The genuine desire to increase the number of middle class jobs may be one of the only pieces of common ground on the American political landscape. The actual definition of “middle class” varies based on where you live, but the desire is universal. The most commonly accepted formula for determining “middle class” is two thirds to double the median household income. A salary between $48,300 and $144,966 qualifies you if you live in Maryland. The range is $25,309 to $75,926 in Mississippi. Click Here to Read the Full...

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Apprenticeships Help Fill Manufacturing Jobs

Learn while you earn, manufacturing needs apprenticeships to build its workforce.    “We need skilled workers, we need to develop a credentialed workforce. They need to be trained, and there’s no better place to train them than inside our own plants right here.” – Diane Karlin, Erie Regional Manufacturer Partnership project manager At just 23, Mike Field has a life many of his high school classmates who went on to college can’t even dream of yet. He has bought a house. He’s engaged to be married. He even has a new puppy, named Ryder. “I know college gives you...

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America Makes Developed the Additive Manufacturing Workforce and Educational Outreach Roadmap

America Makes has developed the Additive Manufacturing Workforce and Educational Outreach Roadmap to identify measurable and meaningful challenges that, when met,  promote inquiry, knowledge-sharing, and technical advancements across the industry. To create this Roadmap, America Makes first held in-person workshops and activities where members engaged in a series of methodologies to generate and categorize education and training needs. Working in teams, they documented hundreds of need statements and identified affinities, which ultimately converged on a curated set of concepts. The outcome resulted in America Makes successfully identifiying those concepts that are most suitable for public-private partnership projects, versus those...

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Welding Technology Marches into the Future

The skilled labor shortage has welding manufacturers moving toward enhancements in safety and efficiency.   The art and skill of attempting to join two pieces of metal together has been part of construction since the Bronze Age when workers used heat and pressure to weld metal. Blacksmiths in the Middle Ages added forges and hammering to the welding process, but it took the Industrial Revolution in the late 1800s and World War I to spur the art of welding to the processes seen today. Welding trends today are less about hammering and more about increased capabilities, better safety, cost...

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Automation is Both a Threat and a Huge Opportunity

What’s that hiding under your bed and in your closet? It’s the monster known as automation and it’s taking away jobs. Or, if you take time to look, you’ll see there’s nothing to fear. Although change can be scary, it is necessary and unavoidable. Embracing this shift can benefit your company as it has many others. Automation will leave have an undeniable impact on existing practices, but it will also create jobs.   Maxi Cifarelli, 25, of Baltimore, peers through safety goggles at a flat screen, her left knee bent and heel resting on her chair. She is en employee...

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CLA Joins Women in Manufacturing (WiM) to Advance Industry Careers

The manufacturing industry is economic lifeblood. It fosters boundless innovation, generates jobs and wealth, and makes things we need and enjoy across the whole spectrum of markets and industries. It is vital to our world. CLA couldn’t be prouder of [its] service to this vibrant sector. [Their] manufacturing and distribution practitioners are deeply invested in the success of [their]clients and the industry as a whole. And as an employer who knows the limitless potential of entrepreneurial-minded people, [they’re] also deeply invested in developing talent, fostering diversity, and growing careers. CLA has joined forces with WiM as a corporate member to help it further its mission of...

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The Next Big Blue-Collar Job Is Coding

Picture a coder…   Usually when people are asked to do so, they imagine someone like Mark Zuckerberg: a hoodied college dropout who builds an app in a feverish 72-hour programming jag—with the goal of getting insanely rich and, as they say, “changing the world.” But this Silicon Valley stereotype isn’t even geographically accurate. The Valley employs only 8 percent of the nation’s coders. All the other millions? They’re more like Devon, a programmer I met who helps maintain a ­security-software service in Portland, Oregon. He isn’t going to get fabulously rich, but his job is stable and rewarding:...

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Manufacturing Sets Sights on Traditional High Schoolers for Its Workforce

“There is a huge misconception that manufacturing is like what it was when I was growing up – old dirty plants, and long work hours, like during the Industrial Revolution.” -Paul Lynskey, executive director of the Blackstone Valley Education Foundation   The Blackstone Valley has a rich history in American manufacturing, being the birthplace of the American Industrial Revolution.  Today there are a slew of manufacturing companies in need of qualified employees for its workforce. The state’s vocational schools help to funnel people through the workforce pipeline. Many of these educational institutions have long wait lists and an increasing number of students heading off to...

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Siemens Energy Struggled to Find Qualified Workers for New Gas Turbine Plant

Siemens Energy opened a new gas turbine production plant in Charlotte, N.C. About 10,000 applicants came to the job fair, but less than 15% were qualified. When the German engineering company Siemens Energy opened a gas turbine production plant in Charlotte, N.C., some 10,000 people showed up at a job fair for 800 positions. But fewer than 15 percent of the applicants were able to pass a reading, writing and math screening test geared toward a ninth-grade education. “In our factories, there’s a computer about every 20 or 30 feet,” said Eric Spiegel, who recently retired as president and chief...

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The Skills Revolution: Why People Matter

Rarely a day goes by without news of digitization, artificial intelligence and virtual reality having an influence on the workforce. A variety of predictions, both good and bad, have come with the tech talk: more jobs, different jobs, less jobs, even no jobs. Despite the mix of feedback, there’s no doubt that a skill revolution is under way. This revolution calls for upskilling and workforce adaptation to a fast-changing world where digitization are further  integrated into everyday tasks.  Organizations need to work hard in reskilling workers to ensure they are better prepared for the technology of the future. While technology cannot be...

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Leave the Loafers Behind: Trade Jobs Offer a Bright Future for Students

The job wave of the future is almost here and it doesn’t require a traditional four-year college degree. In manufacturing and trade, the jobs for highly skilled workers with training in technology are on the rise, and they pay pretty well.  Labor economists say the U.S.-based manufacturing sector still offers plenty of jobs. There have been advancements in assembly jobs, so smaller line jobs have less value than they once did. Grunt work such as lifting boxes and sorting parts are plentiful and easy for employers to fill, but they don’t pay much and don’t hold out much promise for future growth. Laciny Brothers, a St....

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Young People Need Pathways to High-Quality Training and Skills

“Economic opportunity is increasingly out of reach for millions of young people. Without the right skills or education, they find themselves stuck in low-skill, low-wage jobs or unemployed. We are investing in high-quality career-focused education programs so that more young people have a shot at real economic opportunity.” -Jamie Dimon, Chairman and CEO, JPMorgan Chase & Co. Younger generations deserve a chance at economic success. Failing to give younger people the right skills and education is not only a setback for them, it’s also a missed opportunity for businesses to advance with  talent to help them grow and compete. To...

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This Old House Generation NEXT

Along with their charter partners, This Old House proudly supports the mikeroweWORKS Foundation through their Generation Next campaign. Together, they are working hard to close the skills gap through encouraging younger generations to master the vocational trades that built this country.   Building Skills With “Generation Next” When Norm Abram, master carpenter for This Old House TV, started his career as a builder, working alongside his father, the work covered all aspects of construction. His skilled hands had touched every inch of the structure by the time a house was complete—framing the structure, making roofs and walls weather tight, setting windows and doors, hanging kitchen cabinets,...

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Solving the Workforce Struggle

The manufacturing workforce has long been the linchpin for the prosperity of our industry and the economic value created for communities, professionals and their families. However, those critical benefits are at risk due to the growing gap between industry’s needs and the available skills of the manufacturing workforce. This is why SME places a major emphasis on training the current workforce, along with inspiring and engaging with future makers. In 2016, we reached 500,000+ professionals and students, and have initiatives planned in 2017 to further our commitment to training for the skills and knowledge needed to help the industry—and...

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Reinventing the Workplace for Greater Gender Diversity

The case for gender diversity is compelling, but McKinsey research—including a new report, Women Matter 2016: Reinventing the workplace to unlock the potential of gender diversity—shows many companies are struggling to ensure women are represented fairly in top management. Progress toward parity remains slow. In Western Europe, only 17 percent of executive-committee members are women, and women comprise just 32 percent of members of corporate boards for companies listed in Western Europe’s major market indexes (exhibit). In the United States, the figures are 17 percent for executive committees and just under 19 percent for boards.   Click Here to Read the Full...

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Why So Many U.S. Manufacturers are Putting up ‘Help Wanted’ Signs

Susan Murray Carlock says her Indiana company is providing something popular opinion has deemed nearly extinct: well-paying manufacturing jobs. Over the past four years, Mursix Corp., a creator of seat belt buckles and bed frames, has sought to fill a variety of production positions. The average wages exceed $20 an hour — a ladder to the middle class. Trouble is, she can’t find workers.  “We’ve been on a growth trajectory that is crazy,” said Carlock, whose family bought the firm for roughly $5 million in 1990 and has watched it grow into a $42 million business. “But we face serious...

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MCC Young Adult Student Success Program Helps Youths Find Work

When Jonathan Sandoval was looking to get real-world experience in the manufacturing field, the 23-year-old from Carpentersville heard about McHenry County College’s Young Adult Success Program. “This program helps people who have trouble looking for jobs,” Sandoval said. “It’s a good social experience to help people and have them learn more about jobs they are interested in and how to look for those jobs.” After graduating from the manufacturing program in the fall, Sandoval has the necessary certifications, connections and experience to help him secure employment. “Now I’m trained in several areas that can help me get a better job for...

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Getting Innovative for a New Innovative Manufacturing

As of right now, 322,000 manufacturing vacancies exist. Manufacturing jobs are around and employers are ready to hire. How could there be a disconnect in hiring? In the late 1970s, manufacturing was booming with over 19 million jobs. Since then, industry jobs have been on the decline. Although a few peaks were optimistic flickers of hope, fewer than 13 million workers are employed in factory jobs. Technological and global shifts are affecting those with the lesser levels of skill, unfortunately. Despite the deals and policies that can be made to bring back a few thousand jobs, it just won’t be enough. The only solution?...

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New Legislation Encourages Universities to Invest in Manufacturing

Both the House of Representatives and the Senate have passed legislation that encourages U.S. universities and qualifying organizations to give a boost to manufacturing education programs. With this legislation, organizations will help students to be better prepared to enter into the world of modern manufacturing. The act is known as the 2017 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). Based on the Manufacturing Universities legislation, it is led by U.S. Senators Chris Coons (D-Del.), Kelly Ayotte (R-NH), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), and Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), the NDAA is expected to be signed into law by President Obama. Many U.S. universities and manufacturing associations are already onboard....

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ToolingU-SME Report Reveals Manufacturers Are Not Addressing Skills Gap

Interesting findings from a ToolingU-SME report show that manufacturers are facing an extreme gap in talent, and yet many of them have done little to boost their workforce. There is a false sense of security among many manufacturers who are not recognizing these future challenges or investing in the development of their workforce today.” —ToolingU-SME Vice President Jeannine Kunz On September 8, 2016, ToolingU-SME, released a report that showed the progress towards achieving the goal of the Mission Critical: Workforce 2021. Based on five years of insights from the Workforce 2021 Assessment tool, the report states, “The results are not encouraging. Responses...

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The Age of Analytics: Competing in a Data-Driven World

Is big data all hype? To the contrary: earlier research may have given only a partial view of the ultimate impact. A new report from the McKinsey Global Institute (MGI), The age of analytics: Competing in a data-driven world, suggests that the range of applications and opportunities has grown and will continue to expand. Given rapid technological advances, the question for companies now is how to integrate new capabilities into their operations and strategies—and position themselves in a world where analytics can upend entire industries. A 2011 MGI report highlighted the transformational potential of big data. Five years later, we remain convinced...

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Workforce & Skills Gap: Are We Ready?

“Manufacturers can’t find workers!” “The labor shortage is looming. 2 million job vacancies approaching!” “Skilled labor is difficult to find!” “Send help!” While these exclamations might seem as if they are exaggerations, they also ring true to one of the most important and impending issues within the future manufacturing sector: the skills gap. Reports on both sides have statistics to back up their claims. Some say there is an issue, while others assert the skills gap is blown out of proportion. Does it really exist? With conflicting data, what could it mean? Perhaps there are unexplored factors for each employer and...

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There’s an Antidote to America’s Long Economic Malaise: College Towns

OPELIKA, Ala.—Lee County, Ala., lost 7,000 jobs in industries from textiles to tires to fitness equipment when Chinese competition invaded America. Vacant storefronts dotted downtown Opelika, the county seat, and disability claims soared as older workers with limited skills struggled to find new jobs. Instead of merely surviving, though, Lee County is now thriving. Its unemployment rate of 4.7% in October was slightly lower than for the U.S. as a whole. Since 2001, the east-central Alabama county has added 14,000 jobs, five times the growth rate in the rest of the country. Why has Lee County been so resilient?...

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How a Small Company, in the Middle of Nowhere, Struck Workforce Gold

How a relatively unknown company in rural Ohio has been able to solve workforce issues with in-house training, tuition reimbursement and local university partnerships. Using these methods, Bullen, a 45-year-old ultrasonic machining company  has been able to make a smooth transition into advanced manufacturing.   On paper, Bullen Ultrasonics in Eaton, Ohio, has the trifecta of workforce challenges: It’s located in a rural area, about a 45-minute drive from Dayton. It’s a small company, lacking name recognition. And to keep up with changing demand, in the past couple of years it’s been through a dramatic shift from manually operated equipment and “pen...

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Frontline: Women Will Help Fill the Manufacturing Skills Gap

According to a Deloitte analysis of U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and Gallup Survey data, over the next decade, nearly 3.5 million manufacturing jobs will likely need to be filled and that the skills gap is expected to result in two million of those jobs going unfilled. The Manufacturing Institute attributes two major contributing factors to this: baby-boomer retirements and economic expansion. “In addition, the younger generations have little awareness of the career opportunities available in modern manufacturing and often their parents, if they have any perception, have one that is very outdated,” comments Jennifer McNelly, Manufacturing Institute executive director....

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Millennial Recruiting Magic: Solutions from Manufacturers Large and Small

Manufacturers who’ve put some serious thought into attracting better candidates share their best practices for recruiting millennial generation. Five years ago, Willington Nameplate, a Connecticut manufacturer of product labels and plates, did next to nothing to recommend itself to younger workers. The 50-year-old company’s workforce was on a slow march to retirement, with the average employee tenure at 17 years. “Historically we would bring people in and put them in certain functions, and they would stay there until they screamed that they wanted out,” says Brett Greene, Willington’s general manager. But as the family-owned company acquired three other players...

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How to Take Charge of Solving Your Manufacturing Skills Gap

While reports are showing a large skills gap resulting in millions of unfilled manufacturing jobs, some manufacturers are taking action. By promoting STEM careers early on or providing opportunities for training, companies are working to close this gap and gain a competitive advantage.  Like most manufacturers, Max Daetwyler Corp. requires highly skilled employees to produce and service its products. But unlike most other manufacturers that struggle to find good workers, the Huntsville, N.C., maker of printing press machinery has a private pipeline of qualified recruits to keep its production running smoothly. Daetwyler is one of six North Carolina manufacturers...

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Michelin’s David Stafford: Every Conversation Begins with People

Some might say that David Stafford has taken an unusual path to his current position at Michelin North America, where he holds a leadership position in human resources. The so-called “unusual” component is that Stafford’s background is engineering, not R&D, and the majority of his 30-plus year tenure with the tire manufacturer has been in engineering and research and development. But while “unusual” may hold true among many companies, Stafford suggests the descriptive doesn’t quite fit Michelin. “We encourage cross-discipline learning and cross-discipline career paths, and it’s been very fruitful for us,” he says. Click Here to Read the...

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Are Skilled Trades Doomed to Decline?

According to conventional wisdom, future employment prospects are dismal for the 21 skilled trades — electricians, electronic and medical techs, mechanics, machinists, welders, pipe fitters, and other similar trades — and for those workers uninterested in or unmotivated by a college education. The challenges, the argument goes, emerge from a trifecta of forces: automation as robots invade the trades; deindustrialization as America becomes more service-sector-dominated; and globalization as industrial jobs move offshore. While these forces are real, the dismal conclusion is neither inevitable nor supported by the facts.   Click Here to Read the Full...

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4 Ways to Attract Millennials to Manufacturing Jobs

With an estimated 2 million manufacturing jobs to go unfilled by the year 2025, manufacturers will need to work harder than ever to recruit talent. As the largest generation, millennials offer the best hope to close the talent gap. While their numbers and educational levels offer big prospects, their motivations, culture and standards for employment can be a big shift from other generations. Here are 4 ways manufacturers can attract millennials to their workforce. Click Here to Read the Full...

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It’s Time for Vocational Schools to Get Some Respect

Despite that interest, vocational schools have a long history of disfavor to overcome. This national notion that vocational education tracked students toward dead-end professions is absolutely untrue.  On a Monday morning in late spring, city buses arrive like clockwork on Malcolm X Boulevard, disgorging students hunched over cellphones, earbud wires trailing down the fronts of hoodies. They file toward Madison Park Technical Vocational High School, where executive director Kevin McCaskill, in a suit and pin-striped shirt with matching pocket square, and two other administrators greet them as if part of a receiving line. “Good morning! Good morning! Good morning!” McCaskill booms...

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2016 Machine Design Salary & Career Report: Five Years of Engineering Thoughts and Opinions

Since 2012, when Machine Design published its first salary and career report, we have seen an increase of salary growth for engineers: From 2012 to 2014, the average salary was around $90,000 a year. In 2015, the salary jumped to $98,000 a year. This is promising for the engineering community as 56.6% of engineers responded that they expect their salary to increase in 2016. Over the last five years, engineers have been satisfied to extremely satisfied with their work, averaging a satisfaction rate of 90%. They also feel challenged at work over the last five years with 56% answering they are sufficiently...

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Ohio to Offer Workforce Training Vouchers

Ohio is offering what it calls the Incumbent Workforce Training Voucher Program.  Thousands of Ohio employees have received training to advance their career through the Ohio Incumbent Workforce Training Voucher Program, and now that number will increase because round five is rapidly approaching. “It’s important that Ohio’s workforce keeps current,” said David Goodman, director of the Ohio Development Services Agency. “This training ensures employees stay ahead of the game, keeping Ohio competitive.” Click Here to Read the Full Article   Read more on the Ohio Incumbent Workforce Training Voucher...

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Creative Workspace Solutions that Make Employees Happy

If you want to keep your employees on their toes and your environment effective, you may need to consider a revamp of your creative workspace. Hopefully, when the creative firm or department you oversee took occupancy of your current space, someone put a lot of effort into deciding how it should look and feel. But whether that was five, 10 or 20 years ago, it’s possible that nobody has thought much about the layout since. If you’re an agency owner or in-house manager, maybe it’s time to give office design some attention. Even if you’ve been mindful of the work...

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Data Shows Manufacturing Day’s Strong Impact

Oct. 7 marks the fifth annual Manufacturing DaySM when thousands of manufacturers will again host students, teachers, parents, job seekers and community leaders at open houses, plant tours and educational sessions to showcase modern manufacturing technology and the cool jobs available. It is a chance for students to see the diverse career options that are innovative, impactful and durable. As the old idiom goes, “Seeing is believing,’ and that is the guiding principle behind Manufacturing Day. It was created in response to a dire need in America: The industry today faces a major shortage of skilled workers. An estimated two...

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The New Realities of Talent Attraction

Some U.S. counties are performing better than others at attracting and retaining high-quality talent. Economists have long documented the role of talent, or educated and skilled “human capital,” in driving urban growth. A wide range of studies have found that metros with large shares of college grads, such as San Francisco, Washington, D.C., Boston, and Seattle, have higher wages and incomes than others. Over the past decade or so, cities and mayors across the U.S. and the world have developed strategies to attract, retain, and harness talent. Most previous research has focused on talent at the metro level, documenting the...

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How to Attract Millennials to Advanced Manufacturing Jobs

In an age where popular technology careers are only seen as attractive if they are based in Silicon Valley or offered by the latest and greatest startup companies, the manufacturing industry must make changes to attract bright and talented Millennials. The numbers clearly illustrate this need. Baby Boomers currently make up a large part of the manufacturing workforce. With many workers expected to retire in the coming decade, there will be nearly 3.5 million jobs to fill, according to Deloitte and the Manufacturing Institute. Millennials have now overtaken Baby Boomers as the most populous generation, making them one of...

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House Approves Changes in Workforce Education Funding

A bill intended to streamline and add flexibility to the way federal funds for apprenticeships and other workforce training programs are distributed passed the U.S. House of Representatives on Tuesday. If the bill succeeds, the amount of federal workforce funding under the Perkins Career and Technical Education Act would not significantly change: $1.13 billion in 2017, increasing incrementally to $1.21 billion by 2022. But the Perkins funding formula will.   Click Here to Read the Full...

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Top 20 Facts About Manufacturing

In the most recent data, manufacturers contributed $2.17 trillion to the U.S. economy. This figure has risen since the second quarter of 2009, when manufacturers contributed $1.70 trillion. Over that same time frame, value-added output from durable goods manufacturing grew from $0.86 trillion to $1.17 trillion, with nondurable goods output up from $0.84 trillion to $0.99 trillion. – See more at: http://www.nam.org/Newsroom/Top-20-Facts-About-Manufacturing/#sthash.ARM3fMG2.dpuf

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What is the Skills Gap and The Impact on Manufacturing and the Economy

What really is the skills gap and who is it effecting? No matter the number of jobs available, it is certain that we need to focus just as much on encouraging students to make with their hands as we encourage them to make using their minds.  Although the Manufacturing Report on Business, compiled by the Institute for Supply Management, showed a modest improvement in manufacturing conditions in the United States in August, the highly watched employment component declined by 1.1 points to 53.3 in August, still indicating growth but at a slower rate than before. Some economists and thought leaders in...

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Building the Next-Generation Manufacturing Workforce

There’s no doubt: Manufacturers today are stuck between a rock and hard place. On the one hand, many face an aging workforce that may retire without sharing key knowledge. In fact, the Pew Research Center predicts that 10,000 baby boomers will retire each day over the next 19 years. On the other, some 80% of businesses are struggling to bring new talent into the door and up through the ranks. Unless things change, 2 million jobs will go unfilled even as manufacturers face a growing skills gap on their teams.   Click Here to Read the Full...

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Why Manufacturing Education Needs to Advance, Just Like You Have

If you’ve read the Manufacturing Institute report, you’ve heard the statistics: 84% of manufacturing executives believe there is a talent shortage in the U.S. and worry that they won’t find the workforce they need to keep up with the increasingly more advanced and sophisticated demands of the industry. And talent is the number one driver of global manufacturing competitiveness. So why can’t manufacturers find and attract skilled talent?   Click Here to Read the Full...

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What ‘back to school’ means for manufacturers looking for skilled employees

Currier Plastics has received numerous commendations from local education groups and was recognized earlier this year as the driving force behind the development of the plastics degree program at Cayuga Community College.  This past June, Partners for Education and Business presented the Sector Strategy Award to Currier Plastics during its annual luncheon at Le Moyne College in Syracuse, NY. The award was presented as a follow up to the Manufacturing Career Day held in October of last year, which was co-hosted by Currier Plastics and Lockheed Martin. Nearly 70% of the 359 students that were surveyed said they would...

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Rock Valley College to establish a manufacturing training center to replace retiring Baby Boomers at Rockford area factories

As Baby Boomers retire, there is a need for manufacturing training and education. Now, an empty building will become a cold forging manufacturing training academy. ROCKFORD — Rockford may no longer be the screw capital of the world, but it still ranks as the 10th largest U.S. metropolitan area for fastener production, and Rock Valley College is forging plans to help the region maintain its standing. College trustees meet Tuesday to consider approval of a lease with the city for an empty Buckbee Street factory where Rock Valley intends to establish a cold forging manufacturing training center before the end of...

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Transition Time for Boomer Businesses

As a massive wave of Baby Boomers enters retirement age, the landscape for privately-held businesses may be poised for a seismic shift. Recent research has shown that more than $10 trillion in boomer-owned business assets will be passed down or sold by 2025. However, according to the 2015 US Family Business Survey conducted by PricewaterhouseCoopers, only about 27% of private businesses have done any exit planning whatsoever. Even fewer have a documented hand-off plan in place, which may leave them vulnerable to events which could force a hurried sale. Click Here to Read the Full...

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The Advanced Manufacturing Landscape: How Veterans are Saving the Day

Veterans, and service men and women are the key to resolving the workforce shortage in advanced manufacturing. Learn more in this infographic.    Advanced manufacturing is already one of the most in-demand industries in America due to workforce retirements and natural business growth, but it’s also an industry with a severe shortage of skilled workers. When you pair that with the population of Veterans, Wounded Warriors, and Transitioning Service Members looking for meaningful careers after exiting the Service, you create a perfect storm. Here at Workshops for Warriors we are dedicated to providing our Nation’s Veterans with training and Nationally recognized credentials...

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The Keys to Working Well With Millennials

  Millennials get a bad rap, but they’re different like other generations before them. Here are some points to understand that could benefit you (and them) in order to make the most out of your millennial workforce. Dealing with millennials at work can be a challenge. You have to learn how to motivate them, explain why showing up in wrinkled clothes for an important meeting isn’t appropriate, and you can’t for the life of you figure out how can they be both lazy and ambitious at the same time. This enigmatic generation has us all confused. But Bruce Tulgan, author of Not Everyone Gets a Trophy: How to Manage...

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Student-paced learning key to success at Ivy Tech

  Students from Ivy Tech used their college experience to accomplish their personal goals and are seeking opportunities to transform their lives, strengthen the community and grow economy. Ivy Tech Community College Northeast’s student body represents a tapestry of diverse individuals. Regardless of their age, race or socioeconomic differences, each has a desire for a better future. And such a journey often begins with attending college. Brock McPeek, Andrew Smittie and Joe Wood did just that at Ivy Tech Northeast. And while their desires were similar, the roads they chose to attain their goals could not have been more different.  ...

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Stratasys and SME Help Students Prepare for STEM Careers at Skills USA

Stratasys and SME work together in order to give students the experience they need to succeed in the future at Skills USA. Skills USA is a partnership between students, teachers and industry; they work together to ensure that America maintains a skilled, STEM-educated workforce. The 52nd annual SkillsUSA 2016 National Leadership and Skills Conference was held at the Kentucky Exposition Center in Louisville, Kentucky, where over 6,000 Career and Technical Education (CTE) students competed in hands-on trade, technical and leadership contests. Stratasys and SME were honored to play leading roles in the Skills USA Additive Manufacturing competition for the second year in a row....

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