The Aging Workforce
As we said earlier, it is no secret that the manufacturing workforce is getting older by the day. In 2000 the median age of a manufacturing worker was 39, now over 35% of the workforce is age 55 or older. It can be very challenging for SMB manufacturers to plan for the future when you add these retirements with the low unemployment rate!
Retirement of Baby Boomers
More than 76 million Baby Boomers are set to retire in the next few years, and the percentage they make of the workforce will drop from 80% to below 40% by 2022. This drop is a concern for every industry, but nowhere is it felt more than in manufacturing.
10,000 Baby Boomers are hitting retirement age every day
This Baby boomer exodus will leave the U.S. with about 7 million unfilled jobs every month. It is estimated that Baby Boomers make up about 22%-27% of the manufacturing workforce, causing 2 million vacant manufacturing jobs by 2025
Bridging the gap between Boomers and Millennials
There are 83 million Millennials in the United States, and they are the largest living generation per the U.S Census Bureau. As Baby Boomers retire, their jobs must be filled by this new Millennial generation.
It is well known that Millennials currently have an overall negative attitude toward manufacturing, and this is a challenge that many SMB manufacturers are not addressing. They think the status-quo of increasing wages, extra benefits, or adding worker perks is the answer. It isn't!
It's all in how you handle this technology transformation, and how you build a technology culture in your company!