Using Automation To Attract Millennials To Your Workforce
Looking for ways to appeal to the next generation of workers as Baby Boomers Retire?
Here’s how an investment in automation technology can help.
The mass exit of Baby Boomers from the workforce — including their long-held jobs in manufacturing and warehousing—has been well documented in both business and mainstream media. Both Pew Research and The Washington Post estimate that 10,000 Americans born between 1946 and 1964 retire every day. Yet, at the same time, the number of supply chain and manufacturing jobs is steadily increasing, even as overall U.S. job growth has slowed.
Enter the Millennials, which Pew recently
defined as those persons born between 1980 and 19964. By 2019, bolstered by an influx of immigrants, they’ll be 73 million strong and will overtake Baby Boomers in population as the more mature generation shrinks to 72 million. (They already surpassed Generation X—persons
born between 1965 and 1980—as the largest
portion of the workforce back in 2015.) Clearly
there are loads of Millennials around—40% of
them with bachelor’s degrees7 (and around 15% of them saddled with student loan debt and still living with mom and dad8)—so surely manufacturers and distribution center operators won’t have any problem finding skilled workers to replace those retiring Baby Boomers, right?
In the National Association of Manufacturers’ Fourth Quarter 2017 Manufacturers’ Outlook Survey, 72.9% of
respondents said that their top business challenge is the “inability to attract and retain a quality workforce,” and
“79.8% of respondents said they have unfilled positions within their company that they are struggling to fill with
qualified applicants.”9 Likewise, the 2017 Annual Industry Report produced by MHI (the supply chain and material
handling association) found that 63% of supply chain professionals responding to its survey stated that “hiring and
retaining a skilled workforce continues to be the biggest obstacle” faced by their businesses.10
So, why aren’t Millennials rushing to fill all the job openings in supply chain and manufacturing?
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