Industrial Insight

advanced manufacturing… | September 14, 2012

http://american.com/archive/2012/september/u-s-manufacturings-brave-new-world

U.S. Manufacturing’s Brave New World

By Thomas A. Hemphill Friday, September 14, 2012

After losing 6 million manufacturing jobs between 2001 and 2009, the American manufacturing sector has reemerged as a beacon in an otherwise lackluster economic recovery. While many Americans believe that U.S. manufacturing is dying, unbeknownst to most of them, U.S. factories today produce about 75 percent of what they consume. The future growth, however, of American manufacturing—for both domestic and export consumption—will be predicated on what is touted as “advanced manufacturing.”

These advanced manufacturing opportunities are available now and will be in the future, if industry leaders and government policymakers are able to capitalize on them. For instance, while total manufacturing employment has declined in recent years, high-skilled manufacturing employment opportunities have increased by upwards of 40 percent since 1980. Yet, according to an October 2011 survey of American manufacturers conducted by Deloitte Consulting, respondents reported that 5 percent of their jobs—or 600,000 jobs—remained unfilled simply because they could not find workers with the right skills for the positions, and that this employee deficiency was having a negative impact on their ability to expand operations or improve company productivity.

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I'm the executive vice president for a steel casting trade association, the Steel Founders' Society of America. I've got a crazy wife, five crazy children, three crazy people that married into the family, and two crazy fun little grandsons.

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