What is the State of the Manufacturing Economy?

By Miles Free of PMPA. This post originally appears on pmpaspeakingofprecision.com and is reposted with permission.

Today our growth is limited by our inability to acquire skilled workers. In the last recession, we were held back by lack of demand for our customer’s end products. Today, we cannot find the skilled people that we require to operate new high tech equipment that is needed to make the high precision parts we produce. 

Our shops are tackling this issue in a number of ways. Some are setting up internal training programs, some apprenticeships.  Several of our member companies are creating on-site schools to teach skills needed. As an industry we helped to create, and are supporting initiatives like Right Skills Now. Right Skills Now uses National Institute for Metalworking Skills (NIMS) credentials to create the skilled workforce that manufacturers require to remain competitive in today’s global markets.

Claim: The President had this to say about employment and manufacturing:

More than 14 million new jobs; the strongest two years of job growth since the ’90s; an unemployment rate cut in half. Our auto industry just had its best year ever. Manufacturing has created nearly 900,000 new jobs in the past six years. And we’ve done all this while cutting our deficits by almost three-quarters. We’ve launched next-generation manufacturing hubs, and online tools that give an entrepreneur everything he or she needs to start a business in a single day.”

Response: We haven’t won this one yet.

“…there has been a gain of 878,000 jobs since February 2010. But Bureau of Labor Statistics data show that the number of manufacturing jobs is still 230,000 fewer than…in the depths of the recession — and 1.4 million fewer than when the recession began in December 2007. Indeed, the United States only gained 30,000 manufacturing jobs in all of 2015.” – Washington Post

Question: Why do we have a skilled workforce shortage when we are at the lowest labor participation rate in ten years?

Work yet to be done on unemployment

Regulatory Hostility (more…)

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Top Posts of 2015

By Rachel Kerstetter, PR Architect

545_3132154We’ve closed the books on 2015 and 2016 is already off to a great start. If you haven’t already, now is a great time to evaluate what worked well and what didn’t work for you in 2015 to calibrate your 2016 efforts.

The most popular Tradesmen Insights posts of 2015 give us an idea of what content proved valuable enough to you to keep coming back and to share. Our top posts from last year represent many trends and challenges that aren’t going away.

Here were our top 10 posts published in 2015:

  1. Are you a strategic or tactical thinker?
  2. For Your Lead Nurturing Programs – Where do you Find Good Content?
  3. Why Forecasting and Budgeting are Vital to Success
  4. What is a creative brief?
  5. Did Your Website Survive Mobilegeddon?
  6. B2B Social Media Marketing: 5 Reasons Companies Skip Social Media And Why They’re Wrong
  7. What Will our B-to-B Marketing Responsibilities Look Like in 2 Years?
  8. What’s the Future of Small Independent Industrial Distributors?
  9. New Content Marketing Research for Manufacturing
  10. Listen…Please

Planning, strategy, content marketing, listening and adapting with the ever-changing algorithms that rule the web remain important issues into this year.

Since we started Tradesmen Insights many years ago, it’s undergone some changes, but the goal is still the same: to provide valuable B2T marketing communications information, advice and guidance.

What do you expect to be the top issues you’ll face in this year?

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