- At the Washington state Boeing facility, the company is working hard to fill assembly positions being vacated by an aging workforce at a rapid pace, the Daily Herald reports. The company is prepping to ramp up assembly of a new jet, but half their employees will be eligible to retire in the next two years.
- With hundreds of openings to fill next year, and thousands in the coming years, Boeing hosted five job fairs this fall alone, the Herald says. It hopes to create a steady talent pipeline by teaming up with 29 high schools and 24 community and technical colleges in the state.
- The shortages may be eased by a partnership with the local Sno-Isle Tech Skills Center, in particular. The center has one only aerospace program, but several others in precision manufacturing programs that translate to Boeing’s needs, the paper reports.
With up to 3.5 million manufacturing jobs predicted to become available in the next 10 years, about 2 million could go unfilled because of the skills gap.
Manufacturing also must deal with the fact that, because it largely skipped a generation, it will face an uphill battle to get the next generation interested in what it has to offer. In more creative efforts, stakeholders also are looking at ways to change their workplace cultures and considering how to rebrand manufacturing as a viable career option.