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The Manufacturing Industry is Looking to Mend the Skills Gap


skills gap

While the manufacturing industry is looking to mend the skills gap, there is another more pressing issue that holds the potential to further complicate employment matters. Enter the Millennials, the generation born between 1980-2000, poised to quickly become the largest segment of the workforce. By 2025, Millennials will make up 44% of the workforce, according to a report from Deloitte.

The Power of Now

Because of the ongoing skills gap resulting in millions of unfilled jobs within the industry, manufacturing is turning its hopes to younger generations. While on the surface this appears to be simple, the Millennial generation is known for complications and the prerogative to do things their way. Since their entry into the workplace, there have been numerous examples of how Millennials are turning the traditional workplace on its ear, ushering in changes such as flextime and frequent job changes.

One of the biggest calling cards of the Millennial generation may be a lack of loyalty to employers. Deloitte’s fifth annual Millennial Survey found two-thirds of Millennials expect to leave their current job by 2020. Reasons for departure include a perceived a lack of leadership/skill development, feelings of being overlooked, and a desire to have significant work/life balance. These desires do not appear to change as jobs or careers progress.

Building Purpose

One of the most critical work issues to Millennials is achieving a sense of purpose and feeling aligned with a business and its farther-reaching ethics. Not content with a business having an official mouthpiece, Millennials look for a company’s actions to match their words. Another part of finding purpose in a work role is the ongoing availability of professional on-the-job development.

A current opportunity offered through the Greater Oh-Penn Apprenticeship Network could offer Millennials in Pennsylvania and Ohio a reason to explore employment in manufacturing. With almost 3,000 openings in the 14 counties straddling the Ohio-Pennsylvania boarder, the time is ripe to introduce a new generation to manufacturing through an apprenticeship program.

Benefits of Apprenticeship

Employer involvement

Job-related education


National occupational credentialing

Skill-building rewards

Seeking Loyalty

In the very near future, Millennials will make up a large portion of the workplace. Success for the industry moving forward will depend on enticing this new generation and showing them the benefits of working in the manufacturing industry.

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