Skilled Worker Shortage

Skilled Labor Shortage Will Cost Manufacturers An Average $50 Million

Manufacturers will face a shortage of skilled labor in as little as five years, and the costs will be quite high. According to a study of 94 senior manufacturing executives, conducted by Advanced Technology Services, Inc. (ATS) and Nielsen Entertainment's Consumer Products Group, the looming shortfall of skilled labor in the U.S. will cost manufacturers an average $50 million.

When asked what the retirement of 40% of skilled labor force over the next five years will cost the companies a majority of those surveyed -- approximately two-thirds -- say the crisis will cost them, on average, $50 million. Yet 46% of the respondents with more than $1 billion in revenue predict their costs will be much deeper -- more than $100 million in the next five years. The five-year timeframe prediction is based on sources including the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the National Association of Manufacturers and others.

"The looming skilled worker shortage is an unwelcome threat to the nation's manufacturing base that needs to be addressed at multiple levels, from better educating the next generation of factory workers to improving the public's image of plant work," said ATS President Jeffrey Owens. "Our most modern and cutting edge plants can be more productive and profitable by deploying highly skilled employees that make their production machinery run better."

Among discrete manufacturers, automotive manufacturers will be impacted the most, followed by ball and roller bearing makers, metal valve manufacturers and engine and transmission manufacturers.

Advanced Tech Services

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