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March 15, 2015

New Report Confirms U.S. Manufacturers Face Significant Worker Shortage

According to a new report from Deloitte and The Manufacturing Institute, about 57 percent of the 3.5 million manufacturing jobs that will come online in the United States over the next 10 years will go unfilled. The report also found that the vast majority of manufacturing executives blame the skills gap for this impending shortage. Indeed, the report found:

  • It takes more than 90 days to recruit high-skilled employees and about 70 days to recruit skilled production workers;
  • 82 percent of manufacturing executives said skills deficiencies “have a significant impact on their ability to meet customer demand”;
  • 78 percent of executives said the skills gap “impacts their ability to implement new technologies and increase productivity”; and
  • As many as 60 percent of skilled production openings go unfilled today because of the skills gap.

The report found manufacturers are willing to meet the salary requirements of a more skilled workforce. Eighty percent of executives told Deloitte they would be willing to pay higher salaries to workers who are qualified for the positions they have open. 

In addition to the Deloitte study, the National Association of Manufacturers’ first quarter survey of manufacturing executives found 56.2 percent of those polled said attracting and retaining a qualified workforce is a top business concern. 

According to the British research firm the Centre for Economic Research, the skills gap costs the U.S. economy $13 billion every month, or about $160 billion a year. 

 MSCI will continue to address the skills gap by arguing to U.S. lawmakers that they must invest in a competitive work force so North America can continue as the world’s largest manufacturing economy and globally attract the most motivated and innovative workers, investors and entrepreneurs.