A new survey from Advanced Technology Services suggests that American manufacturers face a dire need for skilled workers and expect to absorb major costs as baby boomers retire.
Lists of the most appealing careers in the U.S. often emphasize traditionally prestigious fields like law or up-and-coming sectors like technology, but many forget that the country remains one of the top manufacturing centers in the world. All of the companies included in the ATS survey boasted annual revenue of at least $10 million with 26 percent making more than $1 billion.
Of these companies, half said they had at least 11 openings for skilled workers with nearly one-third requiring more than 20 workers. Nearly half of all respondents – 45 percent – have had to encourage older workers to continue working past retirement age.
As skilled labor becomes difficult to find and these workers ultimately leave, the businesses with more than $1 billion in revenue expressed expectations of losing more than $100 million each.
“This is an essential time to be in manufacturing considering other sectors are seeing hiring slow down,” Jeff Owens, president of Advanced Technology Services, said in a statement. “Many young people overlook the opportunity and high wages that careers in manufacturing afford.”