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Women Are Critical to Manufacturing's Future

April 11, 2019 / Carolyn Lee

Women are underrepresented and underutilized in the manufacturing workforce. Despite making up about half of all workers overall, they account for less than one-third of manufacturing workers. Compounding this problem and creating an urgency around getting more women into manufacturing is the fact that plenty of jobs are out there ready to be filled, as manufacturers currently face a workforce crisis.
According to the National Association of Manufacturers quarterly outlook survey, for the past six consecutive quarters, manufacturers top concern has been the inability to attract and retain a quality workforce. In fact, there are about half a million jobs open in manufacturing right now, and we expect to need to fill about 4.6 million manufacturing jobs over the next decade. A study by Deloitte and The Manufacturing Institute-the education and workforce partner of NAM and the organization I lead-finds that more than half of those job openings could go unfilled unless we attract, e...