American Factories Don’t Have Enough Workers?

American factories are struggling to fill open positions and there are 800,000 job openings for workers across the country.

By Tiffany Velasquez | Published

As more companies have and are switching back to American Made, American factories are experiencing an alarmingly low number of qualified candidates applying to fill positions. Factories are fired up and ready to roll out product as America begins to lessen its dependence on overseas manufacturing. With over 800,000 job openings across the manufacturing sector, employers are looking to fill those spots in a bad way. 

Since the start of the pandemic, with supply chain issues impacting the way that American factories have been doing business for some time now, factories have made a decision to focus back on American made. Companies are now beginning to source parts and fill positions right here in the United States. This has not been an easy transition as companies are finding it extremely difficult to fill open positions with qualified candidates.

American factories make up one of the largest employment sectors in the country with over 13 million employees. The industry has been on the incline for over a year as more and more positions are available to be filled. Since the start of the coronavirus pandemic, hiring employees has been a major issue. 

While American factories are looking to hire candidates who have some understanding of the industry and a basic understanding of the line of work they would be doing, employers are finding that this task turning out to be next to impossible.

Jay Timmons, the CEO of the National Association of Manufactories, was heard saying that only 60 people are looking for jobs for every 100 positions that are open and available. With skilled workers are an all-time low and even fewer people who are actually looking for work, factories are left with too many open positions and no way to fill them. 

Currently, the pay for most positions in American factories is around $20-$30 an hour, up around 5% from the previous year. Industry experts say that the pay will continue to increase as more and more factories are desperate to hire the right candidates. This is still not enough to entice some people to even apply for the record-high number of open positions available.

Experts in the American factory industry are wondering if a misconception of the reality of the job is deterring people from applying for open positions. Today the industry is more advanced and tech-focused than it ever has been and while the industry is male-dominated, women are more than capable of filling open positions in the industry. Additionally, there are training opportunities and programs available to educate interested individuals to fill the positions that are available. 

The Manufacturing Institute has educational programs available just for women. These programs are designed with the specific goal of raising the number of women employees in American factories. Specifically, the institute hopes to raise the number of positions filled by women to 35% by the year 2020.

With open positions, education available, increasing pay, and clarity on the modern industry, American factory owners are hoping for an increase in the number of candidates they see applying for jobs. Americans have been voicing a desire for American-made products for a number of years and that calls for American workers. Now is the time for a call to action.