We were recently featured in an Industry Week article that aimed to explain the lack of available workers to fill manufacturing positions and what companies can do to tackle the skills gap.

In the article, reporter Adrienne Selko talked to a number of industry leaders, including Simutech Multimedia CEO Samer Forzley, as well as associations and analysts to understand why there aren’t more people going into manufacturing.

As the sources explained, US manufacturing has experienced a rough couple of decades with many factories closing in the early 2000s in favor of competing Chinese operations. This trend was followed by the Great Recession starting in 2009 and continuing into the teens, when many manufacturers had to make cut backs to their labor force. However, when demand rebounded and manufacturers were ramping back up, many factories turned to automation instead of hiring back their full staff.

For the last 20 years, manufacturing wasn’t seen as a viable career choice to many younger generation workers. But with estimates of over two million manufacturing jobs not being filled in the next decade because of the lack of skilled workers available, the industry is realizing it will have to train a lot of people and fast.

There are a few solutions, but as our Samer Forzley says in the article, teaching skills that are often hard to learn, such as troubleshooting electrical and advanced automation controls, can be difficult to do in traditional classroom-type settings. However, by simulating scenarios in realistic representations of actual industrial environments, employees can develop more problem-solving skills that are increasingly needed in complex manufacturing facilities.

To read the article in its entirety, please click here.

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