Expert Manufacturing Advice tailored for step-by-step implementation in the workplace. Small Manufacturers, Machine Shops and CAD Engineers improve and thrive with our hands-on help. The Skills Shortage is Critical! Find out how you and your business can proactively combat the skills shortage holding back so many small manufacturing firms Skills Shortage Solutions for SMEs

The Skills Shortage is Critical!

Find out how you and your business can proactively combat the skills shortage holding back so many small manufacturing firms

Skills Shortage
Solutions for SMEs


Skills Shortage Solutions

Is your manufacturing company carrying vacancies which require specialist skills? Probably. The acute skills shortage is one of the biggest issues facing firms in just about every sector. As industry has evolved and changed, people with the right skills simply don’t seem to be available in the numbers manufacturers need. Ask individuals, companies and industry organisations and the story’s the same. Skills Shortages are making a difficult situation worse – all at a time of relatively high unemployment!


So what can you do about it? How can you ensure your business has the skills it needs to thrive and grow? Well the good news is there are specific things you can do. You can improve skills by taking action internally within your company (with little disruption and quite quickly). In addition there are partner organisations willing to help. Finally there are wider government-backed initiatives. What’s more you can make improvements personally, to increase your own employability and future job options.

This section shows you how you can combat the skills shortage. How you can put yourself and your company in a great position to grow by getting the skills you need to thrive.

Here’s a selection of skills shortage solutions available to you and your business...



Along with these potential solutions, this section covers training budgets, overcoming barriers to training, as well as skills manufacturers actually need. Finally we include 7 further options for solving skills problems for small manufacturers.


Closing the Manufacturing Skills Gap from PolymerOhio, Inc.


The Detrimental Impact of Skills Shortages on Manufacturing Businesses - big and small...

So, we know skills shortages are a problem. But with so many competing priorities why should you proactively do more than you are doing at the moment? The answer becomes clear when the true extent of the damage this can do your business is revealed.

Research by the Sector Skills Council for Science, Engineering and Manufacturing Technology (Semta) showed three quarters of employers who have hard-to-fill vacancies said this had a negative impact, because of the increased workload for existing staff. More worryingly, nearly half (48%) said it delayed them developing new products or services, while 41% said it increased operating costs. 39% of employers with hard-to-fill vacancies also reported they had lost orders as a result. These results show that hard-to-fill vacancies have a real and significant impact on the profitability and success of engineering businesses.

To add to this a report commissioned by the Institute of Directors concluded 61% of the directors surveyed thought that not being able to hire the right people had impeded the growth of their business, and 80% thought that skills weaknesses in current staff could mean that their organization would not be able to capitalize on economic recovery. When you look at the skills that are lacking it’s not hard to understand why. The most difficult skills to obtain in new staff were technical or practical skills, while in existing employees, management and leadership skills were identified as those most often missing.

So it seems there is plenty of evidence to confirm what manufacturers already suspect – the skills shortage is really bad for business in a number of ways.

No doubt it’s having an impact on you and your company...


OK, so what are you going to do about it?


This section includes some great ideas to combat the skills shortage. Click on the links above to discover how you can make a real difference and get the skills to benefit you and your business…

Skills Shortage Solutions


If there is such a shortage of engineers, why aren’t engineering salaries shooting through the roof? What do you think?

We constantly hear about the skills shortage in engineering and high-end manufacturing? Well according to the laws of supply and demand, a shortage of anything should increase its value. So why aren’t engineering salaries sky rocketing as a result? Or are they? What do you think?

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