The skills shortage in US manufacturing is well-known. Has been for years. Everyone writes about it, including me. And most people say that education is the key. The line goes that if we beef up more education programs for STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics), revive shop & manufacturing-focused programs in our high schools, and recommit to apprenticeship programs, we’ll overcome the shortage and get back on track.
Well, it’s not that simple. In fact, focusing on education as the tonic for our woes will amount to using a squirt gun on a forest fire.
By now, if you haven’t heard about reshoring – the repatriation of manufacturing to the US from offshore – you’ve been living under a rock. The trend has been growing for about 2 years now, and much of manufacturing in the US has been buzzing since.
And since President Obama held a meeting specifically to understand reshoring’s intricacies and used his ’12 State of the Union address to promote it, reshoring has hit the mainstream media like a Kardashian marriage.
(Well, maybe not THAT strong, but gimme a break – I’m on a roll …)
Now, you may be thinking to yourself the game’s well on it’s way. Nothing more to see here. Be on your way – the cavalry’s coming, and our work here is done.
If you are, you’re dead wrong. Now is the most important time to turn up the heat. Let every one – your representatives, your customers, your vendors, your markets – know that reshoring & manufacturing in markets of consumption bring real benefits to ALL stakeholders.
Below are a list of recent, awfully useful videos and links you can use to inform those in your spheres of influence about reshoring, and why it makes sense – FOR THEM. Post them (and others you can find) on your blogs and Web sites. Add them to your email signatures (both professional and personal). Forward them to anyone and everyone with a dog in this fight.
The game’s just beginning.