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 it’s challenging given the magnitude of the problem — according to research from Deloitte, nearly 3.5 million manufacturing jobs will need to be filled in the next decade, and two million of those jobs are likely to go unfilled.
What is causing this gap? The primary factor is the significant increase in baby boomer retirements, as an estimated 2.7 million jobs will open as boomers continue to exit the workplace. Economic expansion will also play a role as 700,000 jobs will be created due to natural business growth.